Impact Statement

The social marketing plan is a challenge to behaviors that are rooted in a target population. As a result, there can be resistance to change. The social marketing must outline the benefits and the impacts of the social marketing interventions on the lives of people in the target community or society. The benefits and impacts must be expressed in concrete and measurable ways that outweigh the benefits of the status quo. In other words, an impact statement must put the benefits or impacts of existing behaviors of the target population side by side with the benefits of behavior change that can result from a social marketing campaign. The impact statement should define the benefits of the promoted behavior with the consequences of the competing behavior for the target population. In other words, the impact statement must explain the benefits of the promoted behavior for the target population while emphasizing the consequences of the competing behavior. See Box 22.6 for a sample impact statement.

Strategic Marketing Mix

As suggested in the beginning of the chapter, social marketing is based on commercial marketing principles and techniques. Consequently, a social marketing plan should include the Four Ps of commercial marketing: Product, Price, Place, and Promotion.


In commercial marketing, the product refers to the good or service that will be at the center of a transaction between a provider and a client or customer. The purpose of the marketing endeavor is to have as many transactions as possible. In social marketing, the product

Box 22.6 Sample Impact Statement

We want high school teenagers (target population) to see planned parenthood (promoted behavior) as a more responsible decision for their future and as more important and beneficial than unprotected sexual intercourse (competition), which can lead to unwanted pregnancy (consequences).

is the specific, concrete outcome that will result from a campaign. Depending on the purpose of a social marketing campaign, product can be very easy or very difficult to define. For example, in a social marketing campaign about driving under the influence, it is easy for people to understand what it means to have fewer deadly car accidents on a particular highway. A social marketing campaign that involves discouraging youth to use illegal drugs might pose more challenges in defining the outcomes. There may be a need to develop an augmented product, such as guaranteeing anonymity to participants or people who want to assist.


In commercial marketing, there is an explicit expectation of monetary return on investment. In social marketing, the price involves the monetary and nonmonetary costs that the target population will pay. On the other hand, the price can include the monetary and nonmonetary benefits that the target population will receive as a result of a social marketing campaign.


Place refers to the location where the behavior of the target population can be observed. The place is linked to the delivery system of a social marketing campaign.


Promotion is about communication strategies and messages that will be used to influence the behavior of the target population. See Box 22.7 for sample strategic marketing mix strategies.

Implementation Plan

The implementation plan is the translation of the goals and objectives of a social marketing plan into who will do what, how, and when. In fact, the achievement of the goals depends in large part on an effective, efficient implementation plan and its execution (Box 22.8).

Evaluation Plan

The evaluation plan aims to assess whether the goals and objectives were achieved. Assessment and documentation of outcomes of behavior change will result from the evaluation plan (Box 22.9).

Box 22.7 Sample Strategic Marketing Mix Strategies


Cost: Free digital rectal examination and PSA blood test.


Community clinics: Participate in screening tests in an atmosphere that is convenient and safe that guarantees your privacy!


Key message:

- You can win the fight against prostate cancer!

Key messengers:

- Lay health agents

- Community leaders

- Religious leaders

Key media channels:

- Print materials: Brochures, fact sheets, posters

- Videos: Videos on prostate cancer

- Advocacy: Local groups targeting families

- Special events: Cancer fair


A social marketing plan requires some expenses. These expenses must be explained and justified in a budget.


Social marketing campaigns provide nonprofit organizations with a unique opportunity to use an inside-out technique that allows the target audience to be directly involved in programs, projects, and activities that aim to further their vision and mission. This approach increases the level of involvement of the target population and allows for a sense of ownership in the programs of a nonprofit organization. Social marketing has a built-in mechanism for assessment of the wants and needs of the target population because of its goal to influence behavior change. Continuing evaluation processes help a nonprofit organization understand its target audience's cultural norms and local knowledge. Through social marketing, organizations develop unique abilities to identify the

Box 22.8 Sample Implementation Plan

Activity Person Responsible Outcomes Period

Assign a social marketing Executive director coordinator

Assignment letter January 15

Conduct asset mapping

Social marketing coordinator

Asset mapping report

March 30

Develop formative research proposal

Social marketing Formative research coordinator proposal

April 15

Conduct formative research

Social marketing coordinator

Research report

July 30

Organize special events

Social marketing coordinator

Special event committee

September 1 to December 31

Evaluation of social marketing activities


Evaluation report

May 15

popular and accepted behaviors that may be competing for those promoted by a campaign. Consequently, a nonprofit organization can foster a space of awareness within the community, and in turn allow clients to re-evaluate their current behaviors against the benefits and repercussions of those being promoted. The integration of a nonprofit program into the lives and culture of a community to the point of a sense of ownership is a key for program sustainability. Effective integration means that members of the target population receive training that enables them to take over partly aspects of programs that used to be managed by a nonprofit organization. A sense of ownership not only increases the level of community participation, but also constitutes evidence of success that can attract new donors to contribute to support the activities of nonprofit organizations that show evidence of efficiency and effectiveness through social marketing. Further, social marketing can provide opportunities for a nonprofit organization to develop fee-based services and position itself for contracts and other unrestricted or restricted monetary contributions that can help diversify its revenue stream, and consequently contribute to its financial sustainability.

Box 22.9 Sample Evaluation Plan

The evaluation will measure outcomes related to the community leaders and participants in our social marketing campaign. A post campaign survey will be used to measure community leaders' change in knowledge about risk factors of prostate cancer, change in their health beliefs about screening for early detection and treatment for prostate cancer, and change in their motivation to educate people in their local community about prostate cancer. Further, the evaluation will measure whether there were increases in requests for prostate cancer screening, number of PSAs completed by program participants, and number of prostate cancer treatments completed by participants in our outreach activities.

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