Marketing has revolutionized over the years to become something more than just selling a product or building a brand. As there is need to market products to consumers, there is also a need to market ideas and actions to a selected audience or the population at large — ideas which serve to benefit the society even more than any tangible product would. Such ideas and actions are marketed through the act of social marketing.
So what is social marketing?
Social marketing is a marketing strategy which employs the techniques of commercial marketing to reach the audience, encouraging them to change or maintain their behavior and actions for their own good. Social marketing, in simple terms, is done to inform people why they should change their behavior or maintain it. A TV commercial which depict the harmful effects of drugs and tell the viewers to stop or avoid the use of harmful drugs is a clear example of social marketing. The aim is to make the audience do or avoid something for their own good, and this must be done in a way that catches the attention of the audience.
Who is social marketing for?
Social marketing is often employed by governmental and non-governmental bodies who are associated with protecting lives or maintaining an efficient standard of living. These include but are not limited to:
- Fire-fighting services
- Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs)
- World Health Organization
- Medical personnel
- Fitness experts
- Charity foundations
- And so many others.
Why is social marketing important?
To get humans to do something, it is never sufficient to just tell them “do this” or “don’t do this”. Recall how you scroll past the stereotypical paid ads at the top of your search results in search of something more appealing — something more captivating. This is how humans are. To get people to stop destroying the earth through climate change, it is never enough to just tell them “stop destroying the earth”. Such instructions must be presented to the audience in a way that appeals to their senses, draws their emotions and see the depth of their actions: how it can harm or benefit them. Some people may not understand why they should avoid drugs because all they understand is the good feeling. But when they are educated — in a less than 30-second compelling TV broadcast — about the harmful effects of their actions, they may get to understand better why they need to change.
Things you shouldn’t confuse with social marketing
What marks social marketing out is its goal: to benefit the audience. Any marketing campaign whose ultimate goal is not to effect a change or sustain the behavior of the audience for their own good is not social marketing. Social media marketing (where a brand markets its product or service through social media platforms) should not be confused with social marketing. Public announcement made by a charity organization regarding their own donations is not social marketing (even when a donation itself is an act for social good). So long they are not soliciting for the public to contribute to the donations; all they are doing is building their reputation and not helping the audience.
Effective social marketing tips
To carry out an effective social marketing campaign, you must do the following:
- Mitigate barriers: To every change, there are barriers or oppositions. You therefore need to carry out in depth research on your audience to know what the things are that may likely hinder them from doing what would benefit them. The barriers hindering drug addicts from changing differs from those affecting reckless drivers. You must understand your audience and then look for ways to minimize the barriers so that they can readily accept the change.
- Create a catchy phrase: “Help an orphan.” “Say no to drugs.” “An apple a day keeps the doctor at bay.” All of these slogans are catchy, concise and easily understandable.
Slogans are pivotal to the success of every social marketing campaign. The slogan you create must be simple and concise such that the audience can easily understand, memorize and recall it daily.
- Interesting visuals: To capture the interest of your audience, intriguing visuals should be used. The visuals should resonate with the audience and draw their emotions. Picture a child hawking food for daily survival. This immediately tells the audience to help the needy kids.
Social marketing lawyers NJ are here to help you
Social marketing lawyers in New Jersey can help you devise an effective social marketing plan that resonates with the audience, appeal to their emotions, and achieve the desired effect. Our marketing team of specialists is reputable for carrying out in depth research on the audience in question, finding out the barriers, and determining the most appropriate approach to facilitate the desired change.