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Spring 2021
Jul 29, 2021
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MARK 606 - Social Marktng for Global Good
Social marketing involves the application of marketing approaches developed in the commercial sector to solve societal problems. Recognized as a distinct marketing discipline since the early 1970s, social marketing has been employed to influence behaviors designed to improve individual health, prevent injuries, protect the environment, and promote other socially beneficial actions. For instance, successful social marketing campaigns have helped reduce and prevent smoking, decrease infant mortality, stop the spread of HIV/AIDs, decrease littering, increase recycling, and drive myriad other societal shifts in the U.S. and across the globe (Andreasen). While the fundamental principles at the core of social marketing are similar to the main tenets of commercial marketing, important distinctions exist in the application of marketing approaches to solving social and environmental problems. Commercial marketing primarily revolves around selling goods and services, with market share and profit being drivers of strategy, while social marketing is used to sell a desired behavior. Social marketing techniques are used to influence target audience behaviors that will benefit society as well as the targeted individuals, but without any financial profit accruing to the marketer. (Kotler and Lee). Social marketing is also different than other marketing disciplines, such as nonprofit marketing (i.e. marketing one NGO); cause marketing (i.e. linking a commercial product’s promotion with a cause to boost sales and burnish corporate reputation); and social media marketing (i.e. using social media channels to market a product or cause). This course will equip you with an understanding of how to apply social marketing techniques to solve social and environmental challenges, with a particular focus on the priority issues identified in United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs are a set of 17 goals agreed upon by 193 countries to improve health, educational outcomes, environmental protection, poverty, and social justice worldwide. In a world increasingly threatened by climate change, conflict, poverty, pandemics and other threats, new and integrated approaches are needed to foster large-scale change. In order to achieve the SDGs, corporate, NGO and government leaders will need to employ social marketing approaches, and this course will identify when such tools are likely to be effective. This course will discuss how to integrate actions across a diverse set of actors, and combine individual behavioral change strategies with more systemic approaches, such as policy advocacy and grassroots coalition building, to create lasting social change at scale. This course references concepts covered in other MSB courses such as Strategic Marketing Communications, Consumer Behavior, and Corporate Social Responsibility; however, the unique value add of this course is teaching students how to apply comprehensive planning frameworks and marketing concepts to solve global development challenges through the discipline of social marketing. The main textbooks will be Social Marketing: Changing Behaviors for Good by Nancy R. Lee and Philip Kotler (Fifth Edition), Social Marketing in the 21st Century by Alan R. Andreasen, and Social Marketing and Social Change: Strategies and Tools for Improving Health, Well-Being and the Environment by R. Craig Lefebvre. Readings and class discussion will be complemented by small group work, where students will tackle one of the SDG goals using social marketing methods and tools.
1.500 Credit hours
1.500 Lecture hours
0.000 Lab hours

Levels: MN or MC Graduate, Juris Doctor, Undergraduate
Schedule Types: Lecture

Marketing Department


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