Elements of Social Marketing:

The following elements are central to social marketing:

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1. Customer Orientation:

Just like any marketing, ‘Consumer orientation’ is central in social marketing as well. However, people prefer to call ‘target adopters’ instead of consumers, because it is seeing things through their eyes. It is finding about their lives, needs, fears, aspirations and concerns.

2. Behavioural Focus:

In Social Marketing the focus is not just on changing behaviour, but being able to influence and sustain positive behaviours over time. A successful social marketing programme starts with very clear, realistic and measurable behavioural goal.

3. The Notion of Exchange:

In social marketing, exchange implies that the marketer has to understand and offer benefits that the target adopter values. This means the ‘change agent’ (the organisation involved into social marketing) must create an offer that would be attractive to target adopters. The offer may be either tangible or intangible.

4. Competition:

The offer of the change agent must be more competitive from that of its competitors (not necessarily products or companies but may include commercial marketing).

5. Long-term Planning:

Since it takes long time to change and needs commitment and close co-operation between an organisation and the target audience, the long-term planning is required. In social marketing competition comes mainly from external and internal competition. External competition comes from the influence of those people, environments, systems, social norms or organisations that directly or indirectly promote a counter behaviour (like Khanp Panchayats). Interval competition comes from feelings, attitudes, addiction, etc.

6. Marketing Mix:

Gone are the days when social marketing was restricted to only promotion. In fact, it has to be an integrated market mix and a conscious marketing orientation on the part of change agent. The change in behaviour or promotion of idea is the product. Price is the costs to the individual to change the behaviour. Place refers to where physical goods shall be distributed or service rendered. For blood donation camps the location has to be convenient. But the promotion has to be similar to commercial marketing.

The difference between social and societal marketing concepts is that social marketing is application of marketing by different groups (NGOs) to change the behaviour of target group, where as societal marketing is concerned about the companies which include social interests in their marketing decisions.