Developing a marketing plan explicitly, and implicitly, captures many of the core assumptions and understandings of social marketing. In its essence, a social marketing plan is a translation document that distills...
1. Understanding of the epidemiology of the disease
2. The context in which the intervention is being planned
3. Organizational strengths and competencies
4. Partners' capabilities
5. Behavioral determinants
6. And audience insights
...into strategies and tactics that lead to positive impacts in health behaviors among priority audiences. What is included and excluded in it, how terms are defined, its implications for research and evaluation, how interventions are designed and resourced, and what it says as a statement for 'what is social marketing' are taken quite seriously, and literally, by many (and I have been in more than several impassioned debates and discussions over the years on all of the above).
Phil Kotler and Nancy Lee have taken the lead on developing a model outline of a social marketing plan that they will present at the World Social Marketing Conference later this month. The outline builds on the one presented in their book along with their principles of success for social marketing programs that I have talked about before. This latest version was reviewed, and contributions to it made, by a larger group of social marketers including Alan Andreasen, Carol Bryant, Mike Newton-Ward, Michael Rothschild, Bill Smith and myself. This, I am told by Nancy, is the final version, and with her permission I am posting it below for you to review, comment on and hopefully adopt in your practice of social marketing.
Brief summary highlighting plan stakeholders, background, purpose, target audience, major marketing objectives and goals, desired positioning, marketing mix strategies (4Ps), and evaluation, budget, and implementation plans.
1.0 Background, Purpose and Focus
Who’s the sponsor? Why are they doing this? What social issue and population will the plan focus on and why?
2.0 Situation Analysis
2.1 SWOT: Organizational Strengths & Weaknesses and Environmental Opportunities & Threats
2.2 Literature review and environmental scan of programs focusing on similar efforts: activities & lessons learned
3.0 Target Audience Profile (See Note #1 below regarding alternative terminology.)
3.1 Demographics, geographics, relevant behaviors (including risk), psychographics, social networks, community assets and stage of change (readiness to buy)
3.2 Size of target audience
4.0 Marketing Objectives and Goals
4.1 Campaign Objectives: specifying targeted behaviors and attitudes (knowledge and beliefs)
4.2 SMART Goals: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time bound changes in behaviors and attitudes
5.0 Factors Influencing Adoption of the Behavior (See Note #2 below regarding the iterative process.)
5.1 Perceived barriers to targeted behavior
5.2 Potential benefits for targeted behavior
5.3 Competing behaviors/forces
5.4 Influence of important others
6.0 Positioning Statement
How do we want the target audience to see the targeted behavior and its benefits relative to alternative/preferred ones?
7.0 Marketing Mix Strategies (Using the 4Ps to Create, Communicate and Deliver Value for the Behavior.)
7.1 Product: Benefits from performing behaviors and any objects or services offered to assist adoption
Core Product: Desired audience benefits promised in exchange for performing the targeted behavior
Actual Product: Features of basic product (e.g., HIV/AIDS test, exercise, # daily fruits & vegetables)
Augmented Product: Additional objects & services to help perform the behavior or increase appeal
7.2 Price: Costs that will be associated with adopting the behavior
- Costs: money, time, physical effort, psychological
- Price-Related Tactics to Reduce Costs: Monetary & Nonmonetary Incentives and Disincentives
7.3 Place: Making access convenient
Creating convenient opportunities to engage in the targeted behaviors and/or access products and services
7.4 Promotion: Persuasive communications highlighting product benefits, features, fair price and ease of access
- Creative/Executional Strategy
- Media Channels & Promotional Items
8.0 Plan for Monitoring & Evaluation
8.1 Purpose and audience for monitoring and evaluation
8.2 What will be measured: inputs, outputs, outcomes (from Steps 4 & 6) and impact
8.3 How and when measures will be taken
9.1 Costs for implementing marketing plan, including additional research and monitoring/evaluation plan
9.2 Any anticipated incremental revenues, cost savings or partner contributions
10.0 Plan for Implementation and Campaign Management
Who will do what, when – including partners and their roles?
OF SPECIAL NOTE: (1) Alternative terms include: Target Market (the traditional term), Priority Market, Priority Audience. (2) The process is an iterative one. For example, you may need to revise objectives and goals after hearing of barriers and benefits in Step 5, or promotional ideas based on final budget realities in Step 9. (3) A separate plan will be needed for each target audience, even though part of one campaign. (4) Research will be needed to develop most steps, especially formative research for Steps 2-6 and pretesting for finalizing Step 7.