Spare Change

making a difference with social marketing
by Nedra Kline Weinreich
9.30.2006

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When people want to bring about health change on a broad scale, most think about communications campaigns.  While these can be very effective, don't forget about the P in the social marketing mix that stands for policy.  Governmental or organizational policies can create an environment that supports individual behavior change or that does not even require the individuals themselves to be the ones that do the changing.

A study by the American Heart Association found this to be the case:
A Colorado city ban on smoking at workplaces and in public buildings may have sparked a steep decline in heart attacks, researchers reported on Monday.

In the 18 months after a no-smoking ordinance took effect in Pueblo in 2003, hospital admissions for heart attacks for city residents dropped 27 percent, according to the study led by Dr. Carl Bartecchi, a clinical professor of medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine in Denver.

"Heart attack hospitalizations did not change significantly for residents of surrounding Pueblo County or in the comparison city of Colorado Springs, neither of which have non-smoking ordinances," said the American Heart Association, which published the study in its journal Circulation.

The association said this was further evidence of the damage wrought by secondhand smoke.

This policy led to 108 fewer heart attacks in Pueblo in an 18-month period, likely as a result of a decrease in the effect of secondhand smoke as a triggering factor for heart attacks, according to the AHA.

This result actually ties in nicely with part of Craig Lefebvre's recent post on critiques of social marketing, where he says:
Bottom line: Your theoretical or philosophical model for how behavior comes to be, is maintained and can be most effectively modified or changed determines how you use the principles and tools that social marketing provides.  This was always the central point of people like Larry Wallack and other proponents of a social determinants point-of-view who criticized social marketing for ‘blaming the victim.’  Individual theories of behavior change will lead you down that path, whether you utilize a social marketing approach or some other model. The rise of social ecological models, policy interventions and environmental change approaches to public health are all attempts to reorient how ‘we’ view the world and interact with it in our professional capacities. In the way I think about social marketing, it provides a systematic and strategic way to think about issues of being audience-centric, aware of and responsive to larger trends and competition in the environment, using research to guide and inform program development, and applying the 4Ps. The more theoretical models we have in our toolboxes to bring to the task, the more successful, I believe, we will be.
Before you invest lots of money in a media campaign or other communications (i.e., Craig's 4 Ps of communication - posters, pamphlets, PSAs and publicity events), think about how you can change the environment rather than just how you can change behavior.


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Wasn't this a skit on Saturday Night Live? (Actually, yes - video here.)


It's never too long before the latest craze to sweep America makes its way to the UK but most would wish this one really hadn't.

Celebrity wigs designed for babies up to nine months old and are set to hit the market, to the outrage of children's charities.

There's a Bob Marley style dreadlock wig, a Samuel L Jackson afro as seen in movie Pulp Fiction and a Donald Trump comb-over - perhaps for that mature look.

For the girls there's flowing pink locks based on singer Lil' Kim.

I hope this "US baby wig craze" is just a hoax that a British paper took a little too seriously. Has anyone seen a baby with a wig anywhere in the US? Seems like a choking/strangling hazard to me.


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links for 2006-09-29
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Yesterday I wrote about what branding is and how it is used in social marketing. Today, I'll share with you the article that got me started thinking about branding and the unique aspects of social marketing that need to be considered for your brand.

William Arruda wrote an excellent article on MarketingProfs.com called The 10 Cs of Branding. These are the attributes that contribute to a successful brand (though #7 seems to have gone missing when the article was posted - I will update if I get it) (see inserted #7 below).

The brand must be:
  1. Competent - the product or service must fulfill its promise
  2. Credible - the brand needs to be believable in delivering on the product or service
  3. Clear - the brand sets itself apart from its competitors in an easy to understand way
  4. Compelling - the brand is appropriate for and interesting to its target audience
  5. Consistent - everything the brand does supports the brand image and attributes
  6. Constant - the brand remains constantly visible to the target audience
  7. Confident - the brand stands behind its decisions and appears strong
  8. Connected - the brand is part of appropriate communities, affiliations and partnerships
  9. Committed - the brand is built over time and not just a fad or one-time event
  10. Current - the brand remains relevant to the target audience as it changes
I highly encourage you to read the original article, which goes into details about the meaning of each C.

Just as I added more Ps to the marketing mix for social marketing, I think we need to add at least five more Cs to the attributes for a successful social marketing brand when addressing health or social issues. Here is what I think is missing:
11. Change-oriented - The brand must support your program's overall behavior change goal. A cool brand that has nothing to do with the health or social change you are promoting is useless. The Back to Sleep campaign has been so successful in preventing SIDS because the name and logo tell you exactly what to do.

12. Competitive - There are a lot of brands out there - belonging to both for-profit businesses and nonprofit organizations. Your brand needs to be perceived as being of sufficient quality to compete against the others in your category. Guidestar lists about 850,000 nonprofits, many of which are competing for your audience's attention. And depending upon the issue you are addressing, you may also be competing against big-name brands like McDonalds, Budweiser or Marlboro. Make sure your brand is at least as appealing as the competition's.

13. Compatible - Your brand image must be compatible with the cause it is promoting. The truth campaign's gritty cynicism would probably not be appropriate for a campaign on dental health or arthritis. Consider the characteristics of the issue, the target audience(s) and the context in which the brand will be operating.

14. Caring - Give your target audience reasons to care about your brand. How does using it benefit them or others? Building an emotional connection to the brand comes from the words, images, fonts, channels, and music you use in the campaign. It comes from the interactions your audience has with your organization and its staff members, from its perceptions of your chosen spokesperson to the things that their friends and family have to say about your brand. Do they feel like your brand cares about them?

15. Culturally Appropriate - Some brands cut across cultures with no problem -- Coke is an excellent example of this. But when you're dealing with an issue like domestic violence or family planning that has a strong cultural component to it, creating the brand can be tricky. How you frame the issue, how you depict the product users/nonusers, and even the shape and color of the logo can either enhance the brand or make it less desirable, depending upon the cultural lens of the viewer. Testing the key pieces of the campaign with the intended audience can help to take this into account.
Would you add anything more to the Cs of branding for social marketing? Have I or William Arruda missed any key pieces by limiting ourselves to words that start with the letter C? Let me know what you think.

flickr photo credit: adri

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I'm having a problem with my Blogger feed, which is cutting out most of the text from my posts. For those of you who subscribe to my feed, please click through to read the full post on the website. Still waiting for Blogger to respond. Sorry about the inconvenience!
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Nonprofits and government agencies are generally several steps behind the commercial sector in applying marketing concepts to their health and social issues.  Branding is a word that is thrown around a lot by marketers of all stripes without a complete understanding of what it actually means.  We know we want to have a strong brand, but to some that just means creating a logo and tagline.  A brand is much more than just the product itself, or the visuals you create to promote it.

Your brand is how your audience thinks about your product and connects with it emotionally.  It's the combination of how you market your product and how the audience experiences it.  It's the feeling that by using the product someone becomes part of an elite group, and membership in that group reflects the image of who that person aspires to be. 

Think about the most successful brands and the emotions they evoke among their fans -- Harley-Davidson, In-n-Out Burger, Starbucks, Apple Computer...  They inspire loyalty and positive feelings toward the products created by that brand.  You'd have to pry my Mac from my cold, dead fingers before I'd ever consider using another type of computer; when I was discussing branding in my training last week another participant said that as soon as she saw that I was using a Mac for my presentation, she felt an instant kinship with me as a fellow Mac user.  That to me was a perfect illustration of my point.

No amount of amazing advertising is going to create an effective brand for you if the product stinks.  In the case of social marketing, the product is the health or social behavior you are promoting -- if the audience tries doing what you want them to do but has an awful experience, the brand image suffers.  Or the brand may be your organization, with various products that you offer falling within that brand (e.g., if you are at a local health department with initiatives addressing different health topics).  So branding involves strategically crafting all the elements of your audience's interactions with your organization and its products so that they support the right image and evoke the right emotions.  Your product or organization may already have a brand image -- but is it the one you want?

Some social marketing campaigns have been quite successful at building an effective brand.  The truth campaign is the archetypical example.  By looking at what emotions/values are important to youth, they were quite successful at redirecting the instinct to rebel against authority from "smoking to rebel against their parents" to "not smoking to rebel against the tobacco industry."  The truth brand stands for being savvy to the deceptive tactics used by tobacco companies, being part of a youth movement to take on the industry, and being hip to youth culture.  The Verb campaign is another example of a social marketing brand. 

The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation's pink ribbon campaign is a cause marketing brand that is instantly recognizable.  They've created a visual - the pink ribbon - that is applied in many different ways, such as pink Yoplait lids, pink bats at major league baseball games, pink vacuum cleaners, Ford's sale of scarves, the Race for the Cure and other products.  Every partnership they build and event they hold contributes to the image of the brand -- health, women, and wholesome American icons.  I don't think you would see the Komen Foundation partnering with Hooters or Absolut Vodka, for example (though in Hooters' defense, they have just donated $1 million to another foundation for breast cancer research).

So how can you develop your social marketing brand?  Tune in for Part 2 tomorrow.


flickr photo credit purplelime

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links for 2006-09-27
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This summer I was on the selection committee for a youth screenwriting contest sponsored by an organization called Scenarios USA.

Scenarios USA teamed up with the RAP-IT-UP Campaign, a partnership of BET and The Kaiser Family Foundation, to launch the national "What's the REAL DEAL on Growing Up in the Age of AIDS?" Story and Scriptwriting Contest for youth, ages 13-18. They asked youth to write a story or script about how HIV/AIDS has affected them, their friends, school and community.

Scenarios USA will work collaboratively with the winners and professional Hollywood directors in developing the stories into scripts. Scenarios will also work with the winners’ schools and communities to pick locations in which to shoot the films and to recruit local youth to intern on the film sets. Once the films are completed, the writers and directors will be the featured guests at the films’ premiere in the spring of 2007. The films will then be distributed to high schools and community groups nationwide, streamed online, and premiered on Showtime Networks. The 2006 winners will also have the opportunity to continue working with Scenarios USA as spokespeople and advocates on the issues that their stories address.

Scenarios USA's short films from past contest winners have been selected to be the first featured videos in YouAre.TV's new initiative Content for a Cause. YouAreTV is similar to YouTube but seems to put a premium on independent filmmaking that is of higher quality than the random chaos found on YouTube. Unlike DoGooder.TV, which is a similar concept that I wrote about last week, this is not a nonprofit-only site, but they will be highlighting the work of a different nonprofit each month. This approach encourages nonprofits to create and submit the highest quality video, rather than whatever they happen to have in video format.



Ten short films from past Scenarios USA contest winners are posted on the YouAre.TV site. These mini-movies that are conceived and co-directed by youth are of high professional quality and seem like they would make a strong impact on their peers. The movie embedded above -- Choices: the Good, the Bad, the Ugly -- is a good example, with engaging characters, realistic situations and a plotline that shows the consequences of unprotected sex (teen parenthood, contracting herpes) without preaching.

On a side note, as I was looking at the YouAreTV site, I came across this video, which offers a humorous look at the effects of depression in young adulthood. Depression here is depicted as a surly slacker who is almost driven away by drill sergeant Motivation and corporate pep-talker Confidence. But in my opinion the mumbling pajama-clad Sloth steals the show. Some profanity, so perhaps not entirely safe for work, but it's an interesting take on talking about an issue that is often ignored. There's even a "The More You Know"-style piece at the end where the actors talk briefly about the issue. It's not necessarily effective social marketing, but it's not meant as such, and is an interesting example of how you could open the conversation.

UPDATE (9/26/06): The embedded video is working now, thanks to quick action by David at YouAreTV.

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links for 2006-09-26
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9.23.2006

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9.22.2006

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I have been meaning for a while to write about DoGooderTV after receiving an e-mail from someone affiliated with the project, and now that things have calmed down a bit I have a chance to catch up with the topics I had put off for lack of time. DoGooder.TV is a site that seems to be a combination of YouTube and MySpace for nonprofit organizations (still in alpha version according to the logo).

Registered nonprofits can upload up to 100MB of streaming video to their page for site visitors to view. When individuals see the videos and are moved to take action, the site provides ways to donate, volunteer, and create a community around those organizations.

Is it effective? Too soon to tell. Just like on YouTube, there are videos that are interesting and well-made, and there are videos that are of no interest to anyone except the director of the nonprofit that made it. Certainly, the video medium has the potential to evoke a strong emotional reaction when done well. But are the kinds of videos that nonprofits typically make compelling enough for an average person to seek them out?

You can't expect to just load your video onto YouTube and see the
number of views take off. To get viewers and generate buzz, the video
needs to be unusual in some way -- whether it's a humorous angle, a new
way of looking at an old issue, something that hits close to home,
something unexpected... The standard 5-minute organizational promo
video is not going to do it. If DGTV is just more of the same old approach, it will be DOA. If, however, the nonprofits post content that is fresh and exciting, it has a much better chance of breaking out.

Another question is whether it's a good thing or a bad thing for nonprofits to segregate themselves away from where the action is. If a nonprofit already has video(s) created, or has decided to create something new specifically to distribute via social media, should they choose to upload it to DoGooderTV or to YouTube? The answer is yes. Right now the audience is at YouTube but perhaps eventually DGTV will be known as the place to go if you want more information on a particular nonprofit or a specific health/social issue.

I think the best direction that DoGooderTV could take would be to become a showcase for PSAs and television ads created on various health and social issues. Posting ads on YouTube has been a strategic decision by many brands/agencies to reach more viewers than they could reach on television, but not all agencies are as forward-looking. According to FutureLab's blog, when marketing blogger Coolz0r posted an anti-drunk driving spot on YouTube and referred to it in his blog, the Irish agency LyleBalie served him with a DCMA take-down notice for the ad and YouTube suspended his account. Perhaps DoGooder.TV would be considered to be a more appropriate venue for that sort of ad (though for those who are stuck in Command and Control marketing, any use beyond the actual medium for which the ad was created may be too threatening).

On a side note, one not so minor annoyance when I go on the DoGooderTV website is that their featured video automatically starts playing with the sound on, which I find very annoying. They should either have the video wait to start until someone clicks it or start the video with the sound off and let people increase the volume if they want to hear it. A pet peeve of mine is when websites load and play sound files without my permission. Of course I would never do this, but what if I were web surfing while talking on the phone or on a conference call? It's a good way to guarantee someone will never come back to your site.

I'll be keeping an eye on DGTV. It will be interesting to see how it develops.



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I'm back from leading the inaugural class of Social Marketing University, which was an amazing two days. The participants at the training were enthusiastic and knowledgeable about their fields, and we learned as much from each other as they did from me. I'm looking forward to offering SMU again, perhaps in the Spring or Summer, and I'll be looking at other locations for next time as well (especially my favorite city of Washington DC). If you are interested in receiving announcements of future trainings, please send me an e-mail at training@social-marketing.com.

One of the topics that was received with the most enthusiasm at SMU was the discussion of how new social media and Web 2.0 applications are leading to the next generation of social marketing (or NextGen social marketing, to coin a phrase). If you are in the Washington DC area, you have an opportunity next week to catch one of the social marketing social media pioneers talking on this topic.

Craig Lefebvre, whose blog On Social Marketing and Social Change was the first on the topic of social marketing as far as I know, will be the featured speaker at the Public Health Communication & Marketing Program (pdf) at George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services on September 27th at noon. Here are the details as announced by e-mail:
The Public Health Communication & Marketing Program at The George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services is delighted to announce the launch of a quarterly lecture series focused on cutting-edge issues at the intersection between theory and practice. Each seminar will be a one hour lecture and discussion with a provocative speaker whose work is helping to refine the practice of public health communication and marketing.

The seminars will be scheduled for the second Wednesday of every quarter during the noon hour (except in the case of holidays or other special circumstances). They will be held on the GWU medical campus in Ross Hall, and webcast live.

Our inaugural speaker – September 27 at noon – will be Dr. Craig Lefebvre, an internationally renown expert in social marketing. Craig will address the implication of "social media" (e.g., MySpace) for social marketing and public health. An overview of his topic is below. Future seminar topics and lecturers will be identified on the basis of nomination.

To nominate topics or speakers for future seminars, and for additional information about the seminar series, please contact Dr. Ed Maibach (emaibach@gwu.edu).

The Implications of "Social Media" for Social Marketing and Public Health
Craig Lefebvre, PhD


"Social media" is the use of media to facilitate collaboration and interaction among people. These media can be seen as mere digital extensions of older forms of communication ( e.g. promotional campaigns based on word-of-mouth, viral marketing, "narrowcasting," or "slivercasting"). However, thinking about these new media as just new promotion channels misses the essence of what the new media revolution is all about...using media to do new things, not using new media to do old things differently. These new technologies have implications for how we think about the public health behaviors, products and services we market; the incentives and costs we focus on; and the opportunities we present and places where we interact with our audience and allow them to try new things. The implications of social media are not confined to how we should think about our target audiences, but also includes how we should think about our colleagues, our information and inspiration sources, and the resources we attempt to cultivate to do our jobs bigger and better.

Dr. Lefebvre is one of the nation's leading experts in social marketing and public health communication. For over a dozen years, he directed the Social Marketing and Health Communication group at Prospect Associates and American Institutes of Research, and before that he was Director of Interventions for the groundbreaking Pawtucket Heart Health Program. Craig is particularly known for his innovative and insightful thinking about how to enhance the impact of investments in public health.
It sounds like a worthwhile way to spend your lunch hour!

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Social marketers often have to walk a thin line between making an unhealthy behavior seem unappealing and stigmatizing those who engage in that behavior. The Kaiser Family Foundation recently released a Public Opinion Spotlight on the topic of Attitudes About Stigma and Discrimination Related to HIV/AIDS that includes the fact that
Fear of being stigmatized by one's HIV status (or perceived HIV status) also appears to have at least some relationship to people's decisions about whether or not to get tested for HIV. About one in five say that if they were to be tested for HIV, people they know would think less of them.
In this way, a social marketing campaign promoting HIV testing could backfire by increasing the perception of stigma and thus reducing the number of people who get tested.

Liz Losh of Virtualpolitik let me know about an upcoming forum that's going to be happening in New York later this month that touches on this issue:
Selling Us to Ourselves:
Is Social Marketing Effective HIV Prevention?

Tuesday, September 26th
6:30 - 8:00PM

LGBT Community Center
208 West 13th Street (btwn 7th/8th aves.)
New York City
Free and open to the public

From bus shelter ads to give-aways in our communities, social marketing is becoming a larger part of community HIV prevention efforts. But is marketing an effective public health tool, or is it just another facet of consumer culture that sells our lives back to ourselves? Is it a vital means for reaching those who are not in the loop of community organizations, a way of refreshing the messages on AIDS after decades of efforts? Do some social marketing efforts have unintended consequences of stigmatizing community members?

Presenters will show recent social marketing campaigns that they have
produced or critiqued, and participate in a vibrant discussion with the audience on the pros and cons of these approaches.

Refreshments will be provided.

Speakers include:
Liz Losh, University of California, Irvine
Anthony Morgan, New York State Black Gay Network
Les Pappas, Better World Advertising, San Francisco
Kevin Trimell Jones, Black Gay Men’s Leadership Council, Philadelphia
Moderated by: Julie Davids, CHAMP

Co-sponsored by:
Black Gay Men’s Leadership Council, Community HIV/AIDS Mobilization Project (CHAMP), Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC), LGBT Community Center, New York State Black Gay Network (list in formation)

For more information or to be added as a co-sponsor, contact
sonny@champnetwork.org.
I suspect that this forum is a response to this HIV campaign that was pulled in Philadelphia after concerns arose among the target audience that the campaign stigmatized black men. A similar forum was held in West Hollywood, Calif. recently when a backlash by HIV-positive men arose against the HIV (not fabulous) campaign because they felt it stigmatized them.

If any of my New York area readers attend, I hope you will report back on it. I missed the West Hollywood event because it was on the eve of the first day of school for my kids. I look forward to seeing what Liz will have to say about her appearance at the forum.

****
On a different note, I am busy preparing for the Social Marketing University training that is starting on Monday, so I will be incommunicado until the middle of next week. We have attendees coming from around the world, and from a wide range of organizations. It should be an exciting event! I'm hoping to offer another training within the coming year and will keep you posted.


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They dropped the ball on this one. Nancy Schwartz of Getting Attention reports that the CDC's successful Verb campaign will become a past participle after a successful five-year run. This multifaceted social marketing campaign encouraged 9 to 13 year olds to get active and made exercise fun, creative and attractive. According to the Wall Street Journal, Congress failed to renew funding for the CDC to continue the program, which will run out of money this month. To date, the government has put $339 million into advertising and marketing for the Verb campaign, which urges kids to find their own action word and do it.

In addition to the ad campaign, the cornerstone of the program were the yellow balls that they handed out -- about 500,000 of them. Each ball has a number, and kids were encouraged to blog about what they did with their ball on the VerbNow.com website and then pass the ball along to a friend. About 12,600 kids have "blogged" their ball.

The campaign evaluations have been quite successful (from the WSJ):
The end of the Verb campaign comes just as data are trickling in showing that it was surprisingly effective at boosting physical activity among school children. A recent study of more than 2,700 school kids published in the medical journal Pediatrics showed that 9- and 10-year-old kids who had seen the Verb campaign reported one-third more physical activity during their free time than kids who hadn't seen Verb. Among girls ages 9-13, the ad campaign boosted free-time physical activity by nearly 27%.
Awareness of the Verb campaign was extensive, with 70-80% of school kids knowing about the program. Apparently awareness among adults was much lower, resulting in the decision by Congress to take away funding. And this at a time when obesity, which starts in childhood, has reached epidemic proportions. I guess we'll just go back to having the health teachers droning "Exercise is good for you. You should do it."


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In the past week, my post on the Social Marketing vs. Social Marketing Showdown has  been included on several blog carnivals (compilations of posts on related subjects).  Yes, I am a shameless self-promoter, but I think it's important that all marketers understand the difference between social marketing and social media marketing.  Take a look at these Carnivals for the best of the blogosphere from the past week:

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Each September 11th, I force myself to pick away the scabs that formed on my psyche on 9/11/01. It's painful. It hurts. But reliving the emotions and experiences I felt on that day is the best reminder of why we must fight and win against the people who hate us simply because we love freedom. Thank God I did not lose anyone I know that day. And though I was scheduled to be on a plane to Chicago on 9/12/01, I was lucky not to have decided to start on my journey a day earlier.

The thing I find that helps me best connect back is putting myself in the shoes of the people who found themselves in the Twin Towers that day. Or in the Pentagon. Or on one of the hijacked airplanes. What did they experience? What must have gone through their minds as they realized what was happening to them? What would I have done if it were me? These are impossible questions to answer, yet through this storytelling in my head, I am able to change the abstract numbers 9/11 into its meaning on a human level.

This is why, when I found out about the 2,996 Project last week from Carol of planningblog, I knew I had to participate. The project consists of tributes to honor each victim of 9/11, each created by a different blogger and posted on September 11th. I was randomly assigned to write about Amy O'Doherty, who lost her life in the World Trade Center. When I first clicked on the site to get more information about her, I gasped because in the picture above, she looks almost like me. Another "there but for the grace of God go I" moment.

I had to do a lot of searching to find information about Amy, but here is her story:

Amy O'Doherty grew up in Pelham, NY, and attended St. Bonaventure University in upstate New York, graduating in 2000. A professor there who had her in four classes said of her:
She was a true pleasure to have in class: always doing every homework, carrying class discussions (especially in Money and Banking!), and such a hard worker.
After graduating, she moved to New York City into her first apartment and worked for Cantor Fitzgerald, an international securities firm with offices on floors 101-105 of the north tower of the World Trade Center.

A profile in the New York Times read:
To Amy O'Doherty, in her first job and apartment, Manhattan's streets emanated excitement and its air, promise — of new friends and smart conversations over steaks at Morton's, and of unlimited success. Of what Geraldine Davie, her mother, called "the largeness of life."

Ms. O'Doherty, 23, loved her job as a broker's assistant at Cantor Fitzgerald. "Financing, trading, bonds," said Liz Gallello, a childhood friend. "She wanted to take it – the career, the city woman lifestyle – as far as far it could go."

She was delighted with her five-story walk-up — so small, said Ms. Davie, that "Lilliputians should live in it." She filled it with dozens of framed photos of friends from Pelham, N.Y., where she grew up, and from camp, college and work.

"She was soaking up that great New York style," said Ms. Davie. "Picking up that New York language. She didn't know it but she was living her bliss."

On September 11, 2001, Amy managed to place a call to her mother in the moments after the crash. But she and a thousand more of her colleagues were never heard from again.


This picture of a friend or family member searching for Amy in the days after breaks my heart. When we remember the people who were killed on 9/11, we also have to think about the thousands of mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, children, other family members and friends whose lives were forever shattered that day. The victims number many more than 2,996.

Amy was clearly loved by many. I will leave you with this heartfelt poem written in her memory by her friend Diane Huggins:
Just as the sunflowers you loved you were bright and cheery in every way,
You loved your colleges and your job that was well displayed.
You had a kind, generous heart that never strayed.
You felt life should be savored not just lived from day to day.
A master disciplinarian with both gentleness and firmness conveyed.
You were always smiling and laughing just a beautiful person surveyed.
You had a great sense of humor, upbeat so full of fun and play.
You implanted heart prints on many hearts that love will never stray.
Shopping for yourself and your mother was always a great thrill and okay.
If mom Geraldine wanted something you indulged her without delay.
You were happy when mom accepted your gifts, they were like beautiful bouquets.
You were and forever are her precious daughter, a true gift of love so to say.
Beloved sister to Maura you shared a close friendship so fine,
you continue to guide her with your spirit of love that is very well defined.
Loving daughter to James he misses the times you intertwined,
He sees your love living on in each twinkling star that brightly shines.
There is a beautiful star in Heaven that to him alone has been assigned.
You live on in your family forever dwelling in their hearts and minds.
you're their guardian angel and their greatest hero and gift divine.

We must never forget. I rented United 93 to watch tonight. Let the hurt begin.


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Fard Johnmar of Envision Solutions and HealthCareVox has created a fantastic e-book called "From Command & Control To Engage & Encourage: a new healthcare communications strategy for a social media world." It's available as a free download from his site.

This clear, prescriptive e-book lays out a strategy for healthcare-based organizations (though it's applicable to all companies) to move from the traditional marketing activities of "Command and Control" -- developing content and retaining careful control over how the messages are presented -- towards "Engage and Encourage" in bringing social media into an effective marketing program. Since users of social media are likely to get involved at some point in the marketing process with or without your consent, you are much better off starting with the assumption that it's going to happen and figuring out how to use social media in a way that encourages accuracy and positive dialogue.

This e-book is a must-read for marketers trying to figure out how to blend a social media approach with their more traditional marketing program. This aspect of marketing is not something that can be ignored, and when done well, can enhance your current efforts.
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The social marketing vs. social marketing story has received coverage from across the blogosphere, with most bloggers who have commented firmly on our side. Here are a few excerpts:

From Alison Byrne Fields of We'll Know When We Get There:
I'm a solid column one person: social marketing is using commercial marketing strategies to promote positive behavior or attitudinal change.

To be honest, I can't believe this is even a topic of debate -- it makes the social media folks who are pushing the issue look a little idiotic. You're capable enough to respond effectively to a revolution in what it means to be a customer and you can't come up with your own name? It's like picking a URL for your new site, kids. This one's already registered.
Francois Gossieaux of Emergence Marketing does not like the new usage of the term social marketing, and he's concerned that these new "social marketers" are going to focus on the hype without including the critical ethical considerations and understanding of the fundamentals:

Using "social marketing" as a catch-all category for the (not-so-new) marketing techniques which include viral marketing, word-of-mouth marketing, community marketing, consumer-generated-content-based marketing, and other social media-based marketing "techniques," not only "hypes up" the value of those methods unnecessarily - it also engenders the danger for misuse, abuse and the ultimate destruction of those marketing techniques for everyone.

Many clueless and panicky marketers, who have witnessed the decline of marketing programs like email marketing and other interrupt-based marketing methods - which incidentally they destroyed in the first place - will now jump on this latest craze and screw it all up! As usual, they will throw dollars and especially technology at the issue without understanding the underlying fundamentals and ethical considerations that allow those methods work in the first place.
And Tara Hunt of HorsePigCow gets it and has an interesting idea for our social marketing community to consider.
On first glance, you may say, what's the big deal? Well...

It's almost an issue of trademarking (which she may consider doing...maybe a community mark?). If someone came along tomorrow and said that Pinko Marketing was the practice of painting everything pink or creating viral campaigns, I would take issue, too. Especially if it was someone with a far reach like Jupiter Research.

I looked into this idea of Community Marks, which is a concept Chris Messina came up with to protect the integrity of a non-commercial brand that is created collaboratively by a loose volunteer community, such as Bar Camp or Spread Firefox. It's not quite a trademark, but more formal than doing nothing. The community itself is responsible for enforcement of the mark. An interesting idea for the social marketing community to consider -- we are not as a whole technically savvy enough to enforce this as a community but ideally members of our community will speak out when they see the term being misused.

UPDATE (9/8/06): Carol at Driving in Traffic adds her two cents to the discussion:

Some have argued that the traditional notion of Social Marketing has lost its umph because the emergence of social media has muddied the semantic waters. To a certain extent, I agree. Others trivialize Social Marketing because, to date, its successes have come in under the radar when compared with the long touted product campaigns of Nike and Apple. With the emergence of the CDC’s National Center for Health Marketing and the organized push they are about to embark upon to meet the goals of HealthyPeople 2010, things are about to change for the better.

However, if my thoughts are right– which they may not be and everyone is welcome to help me refine them through civil discussion— all marketers are going to be utilizing the new technologies and social media platforms. Perhaps it is then wise if we all work diligently to be more clear about what we say we do.



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At the suggestion of Carol Kirshner of the blog Driving in Traffic, I have created a chart to help elucidate the differences between authentic social marketing and the new use of the term to mean "social media marketing." As organizations like Jupiter Research continue to knowingly or unknowingly use the term incorrectly (see backstory here), confusion will reign as people try to figure out what each other is talking about. This chart, which I hope will be a collaborative work-in-progress, can serve as a touchstone for continuing the conversation among marketers of all kinds.

Social Marketing vs. "Social Marketing"

Social Marketing "Social Marketing"
AKA Social Marketing Social Media Marketing
Usage Started 1971 Approx. 2005
Definition The use of marketing techniques to promote the adoption of healthy or pro-social behaviors Marketing via online tools and platforms that people use to share information with each other, such as blogs, social networking sites, wikis, podcasts and shared media sites
Purpose Changing individual behaviors to improve their own health or well-being, or to help society for the greater good
Involving consumers in marketing efforts designed to generate positive word of mouth or personal investment in the brand
Who Uses It Nonprofit organizations, government agencies, other organizations working toward health or social change Companies or other organizations that want to add an online peer-to-peer or participative component to their marketing
Who "Profits" Individuals or society The organization doing the marketing
Target Audiences Individuals at risk for a particular health or social problem, those who are likely to adopt positive behaviors to help society Tech-savvy consumers who are already using social media tools, whether as a creator or consumer of content
Related Fields/Terms Nonprofit marketing, cause marketing, health marketing Social media optimization, social network marketing, word of mouth marketing, viral or buzz marketing, citizen marketing, community marketing
Examples Verb Campaign, truth Campaign Snakes on a Plane, Chevy Tahoe
For More Info Wikipedia, Squidoo, Social Marketing Wiki Wikipedia, SEOMoz blog, Marketing with Social Media

Whether you are a social marketer or a social media marketer, I invite you to add your comments and modifications to this chart to make it helpful to everyone in the marketing field. I will post updates as the chart evolves by blogsourcing a la David Armano.

UPDATE (9/6/06): I added the year the usage of each term first appeared. Kotler and Zaltman coined the phrase in an article in 1971. I don't have a historical source for the "other" social marketing appearing in 2005, but that's when I remember first seeing it.

UPDATE (2/21/07): Added "community marketing" to the "related fields" list.


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David Schatsky of Jupiter Research has posted a response to the concerns of the social marketing community about the use of the term "social marketing" that shows that Jupiter doesn't quite understand the issue:
If we find over time that the term loses its relevance in our industry we'll revisit it. We have renamed coverage areas in the past. But for now, and with no disrepect to those who have worked at the other social marketing for years, whose efforts I applaud, I think the name for our coverage area is appropriate in our context and will stick with it.
Perhaps they already ordered the letterhead and don't want to have to change it.  Perhaps they don't want to appear to be backing down to bloggers again after an earlier controversy.  I'm afraid they see this as just an issue of us trying to defend our turf, when it should be about helping their customers find them and avoiding confusion when faced with pages of completely irrelevant (to them) search results for social marketing.

We lost this battle.  Can we win the war of words over time?  If you agree that this is an important issue for our profession, what do you think we can do to keep the semantic waters from becoming muddied?


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Clara Jacob asks at the Post Haste blog why advertising alone can't change behavior:

Is this true? With advertising we can get people to eat candy bars. But we can’t get them to drive the speed limit. Neuter their pets. Stop using meth.

Why is this? We did a direct mail piece recently, which included a coupon for a dollar off a gallon of milk and 5 cents off each gallon of gas. It got a 60 percent response. That’s phenomenal. It changed the behavior of hundreds of people. They went to stores and purchased milk and gas.

Couldn’t “social marketing,” as it’s called in the nonprofit world, change behavior equally well?

Or, as Wiebe asked about 50 years ago, "why can't you sell brotherhood like you sell soap?" Yes, we can use the same tools, but people do not change their complex health and social behaviors as easily as buying a $3 carton of milk. Advertising is only one piece of what needs to be considered in a social marketing program, and if the other necessary components are not there to back up the advertising, the campaign will not be successful.

Quoting myself from the comments:
The important role that advertising can play is in raising awareness that there is a problem that needs to be addressed, or in helping an individual realize that they are personally at risk if they do not adopt the behavior being promoted. Advertising can create an environment in which the target audience develops a favorable impression of the “product” (ie the behavior) and begins to see it as socially acceptable and desirable.

But for an everyday lifestyle change (e.g., eating in a healthy way) or even an occasional but emotionally difficult behavior (e.g., getting an HIV test), advertising does not always offer enough personal support to lead someone to take action. That usually takes interpersonal communication from an influential person like a doctor, friend, family member or even a knowledgeable and caring person on the other side of a telephone hotline.

Advertising can lead the horse to water, but whether the horse drinks 8 glasses a day is another question.


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