Critical issues in social marketing

A review and research agenda

Authored by: Ross Gordon , Laura McDermott , Gerard Hastings

The Routledge Companion to Nonprofit Marketing

Print publication date:  November  2007
Online publication date:  November  2007

Print ISBN: 9780415417273
eBook ISBN: 9780203936023
Adobe ISBN: 9781134114917


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Social marketing has enjoyed a period of evolution and growth in recent years. It has matured as a discipline and is currently a key contributor to social and health behaviour change efforts globally (Andreasen 2003). Now is an opportune time to take stock of social marketing’s progress and review its current challenges. This chapter provides a review of social marketing and offers a research agenda for the future. It begins by examining the evolution and growth of social marketing before addressing key contemporary issues and challenges within the social marketing field. These include:

defining and conceptualizing social marketing;

building an evidence base and creating a research agenda;

identifying new areas in which social marketing can be applied;

considering how to market social marketing; and

ensuring the sustainability and durability of social marketing.

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