Social Marketing Assignment

Social Marketing Assignment


This work presents a social marketing campaign plan to address mental health in young men. It starts defining the problem to solve and justification of the severity. Most Men do not report or share stressing issues which later turns into deep mental problems. This report will focus or provide a detailed plan which contains the best interventions, resources, and timeframe to help such men deal with stress and also avoid the negative behaviours when stressed.

Stage1: Scoping

Problem Statement

Mental health in men is increasing and leading to more problems like self-harm, Alcohol, and other drug abuse. Most men do not report cases of depression, stress among other mental difficulties leading to too much accumulation. They only available choice to relieve the stress is self-harm or taking drugs to forget about it. According to Marsh (2017, par. 2); Kaess, Brunner & Chanen (2014, 7), some of the men are going to the extent of harming their bodies in the process of trying to attain size and shape which the society described as excellent.  The reason why they keep silent on the problem is partly because of cultural teachings on masculinity and somewhat because they do not get access to mental health services (Wang et al., 2013, 42; Seidler, 2016, 107). There is, therefore, need to have a campaign that helps the men to understand where they can get mental health services, change their behaviours of keeping silent when they are depressed, and change the act of self-harm.

The seriousness of the Problem

The rate of mental disorder in the United Kingdom is high standing at 16 million people. About 25 percent of all citizens in the UK experiences mental illness in their life (McManus et al., 2016, 4). Out of the whole population with mental illness, the largest share affects young people. In the UK, suicide is among the leading causes of death in people below 35 years (Marsh, 2017, par 3). An approximate 1660 people below 35 years committed suicide in 2015, which was an increase from 1557 in 2014. According to the Office National Health Statistics England (2018, par. 5), 12 percent of all young people between the age of 5 and 19 years were depressed in 2017. Also, the number of males who commit suicide is three times more than that of women.  Blumberg, Clarke & Blackwell (2016, 7), notes men between the age of 18 and 35 years are facing more life challenges and therefore likely to develop stress. In 2013, there was 78 percent of men committing suicide while that of women was 22 percent (Marsh, 2017, par 3).

Specific Mental Health Problem and the Desired Change Behavior  

The mental disorder which the campaign will address is anxiety. It is defined as a constant overwhelming feeling of fear and worry resulting from different situations. The campaign will focus on the tension that develops due to normal life challenges in young men including rejection from peers, relationship partners, lack of employment, poor performance in school among others.

The campaign will aim at changing the thinking of the target group on the impossibility of issues in life and therefore take issues from the positive direction. Worry comes when the young men think that there is no breakthrough in their challenges like getting a job. The group has not learned the art of patience. The campaign will, therefore, be targeting to change their thinking which will, in turn, help them avoid anxiety.

Also, the campaign will focus on behaviour change which results from anxiety. Sometimes it may be hard to control worries even when a person has a positive mindset. Most men will self-harm themselves due to heightened anxiety as a way of solving the problems. The campaign will be looking at how to help them adopt better behaviours when faced with such a situation. The aim in self-harm behaviour change is to make young people assume the behaviour of talking their issue out with other peers, parents or metal counsellors.

Target Audience Profile

The problem statement guides the section on selecting the target audience because it provides general information about mental health on where, how and to whom it is occurring. Below is the profile for the chosen target audience.

Men– The problem statement states that the problem is more in men. According to Morriss, Kapur, & Byng (2013, 4573), young men face a lot of challenges because of the role the society expects them to play. The community places men in a situation to think that they are the future of their families and therefore they have to work hard. With the minimal jobs in the community, men have to struggle, and in the process, they meet with many challenges which lead to stress and other mental disorders. Also, self-harm cases are more in men and therefore employing a social campaign on the group will benefit society more.

Age, between 18 and 24 years- the reason for selecting men at this age is because first, the studies have shown that self-harm behaviours are occurring more at this stage. It, therefore, follows that having a campaign specifically for the age group will solve a substantial problem form society. Another justification for the age group is that men at the stage are discovering themselves and have a lot of needs from physical to emotional. This means that they have an area in which the social marketing campaign can concentrate on to attract them (Corcoran, 2015, 975). The men at the age are looking for relationships, jobs, advancement in academics among others. Most of the needs are based on social status which means that a social campaign can attract them and make an impact. Also, it is at this age when the mental disorders at birth like Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) start to manifest.

Educational level: Post-secondary– those men beyond secondary school level have an idea of mental disorders, how they occur and the effects. The School has exposed them through social group discussions, workshops in colleague among others. However, most of the young men want to have a sober mind, but they are unable to succeed using the available strategies. A social campaign will be useful for them since they are willing to change their behaviours which lead to stress and they already understand some of the processes towards change.

Economic status-medium to very rich– rich people had a lot to think and decided because there is many to do all they may wish. Also, they interact with may subject from alcohol, relationships which may lead to stress and other mental disorders leading to self-harm. Targeting this group provides the campaign with enough audience. Psychiatric disorders in humble people are not high since they tend to be contented and with minimal engagements.


Literature review and Field Experience on Interventions (Theory)

The Fogg Behavior Model (FBM)

This campaign bases its ability to change behaviour and offer a solution to the target group anxiety under the FBM. The model provides for behaviour to succeed, there has to be a motivator, the person must have the ability to perform the behaviour and that the act needs a trigger to occur (Mogles et al., 2018, 5). The three factors to a behaviour guide the social campaign whose aim is to replace the negative behaviours of the young people including self-harm, lack of patience and negative thinking with positive ones. The theory, therefore, creates a framework which the team will use to ensure effective behaviour change. It informs the team first to motivate the target audience, position them present enablers to change behaviour and use a trigger to achieve the desired character.


the model offers three categories of motivation which includes pleasure/pain, hope/fear and social acceptance/ rejection (Mogles et al., 2018, 5). The three categories will inform the form of interventions to use in the marketing stage mix. They have a set of reward and penalties of a different kind depending on the type of behaviour that a person targets to change. Hope will work for the young men to give an assurance that there is hope in life and therefore they should take it positively. Also, social acceptance motivation will work by prescribing behaviour that will increase the social acceptance of the target group.


In the ability factor, the theory provides that for a behaviour to occur, the subject must have the ability to perform that behaviour. One assumption of the theory under capacity is that people are generally lazy and therefore, behaviour change can only be possible when a person promotes the strength of the target (Mogles et al., 2018, 5). The theory outlines the following factors that can lead to the high ability of the target to change behavior; time, money, physical effort, brain cycle, social deviance and non-routine.  The factor guides the social campaign by providing an insight into the tools which the team will have to carry. In the case of this campaign on mental health and related behaviors, the important enablers include time, money and not-routine. This stage of the model informs that the campaign will succeed because most of the young people have time and the selected group has money. However, the team will create more time for the target and provide financial support to increase the ability of young men to change behavior.


Triggers according to the model are those elements which remind a person about a behaviour. They help to create a routine and therefore, the person forms a character of a long-lasting behaviour from regular reminders (Mogles et al., 2018, 5). The factor informs the social marketing campaign to have reminders of behaviour change. These triggers are addressed in the marketing mix stage although it’s worth to mention some of them including media messages to remind the young on the importance of taking life positively.

Marketing Intervention Mix Strategies


The campaign will educate the target group about anxiety to enable them to realize when they are anxious or evaluate whether they have ever been anxious. Definition of the mental disorder is essential to the target audience to help them understand in details about the topic and bridge any communication barrier between them and the team. There are several other mental disorders which may be affecting the target audience, and it would be better for them to know the specific problem the team will be addressing. The team will also be educated on the results of anxiety and the dangers it presents. This is the first stage in motivation as described in the FBM. Learning that their condition is known and has a solution will give them hope and therefore motivate to change.

Price- the audience will pay a price of time to go through the education program. The team will require them to assemble for workshops on exposure to the topic which is the identified social problem to solve. The team will also incur the cost of engaging educators on the topic.

Product- the products to use here will be fliers with details description of the disorder, how it occurs, factors that lead to anxiety, effects as well as how people can avoid or control it. Also, the education will involve exposition on the dangers of the self-harm behaviours which results from anxiety like smoking and drug abuse.

Place- the team will organize the education programs in shopping centers where the target audience converge in the evenings. Also, there will be forums in institutions of higher learning including colleges, poly-techniques and universities.


Support represents the enablers in the FBM model. Behaviour change as described in the theory section requires that the target can accommodate the desired behaviour (Mogles et al., 2018, 5). The team will offer support to the target audience in different forms. The support will include helping the young people create social networks within themselves and with other people outside the group like investors who can help them in different situations like when they need employment, finances for school fees or services of a friend to talk to and relieve anxiety.

  • Product- One of the product is psychologist and psychotherapist’s services and process to the target. When people do everything they wish, their lives get out of hands, and they can do anything including harming their bodies (Mens, 2016, 3). The counselling is a reliable product that will attract the target young people to the program (Edgar et al., 2017, 94). Advice acts as a brain cycle enabler as stated in the ability level of the FBM (Mogles et al., 2018, 5). Those who are addicts of the drugs like cigarettes will get the support of replacement therapy like the use of bupropion and Varenicline for those who are smoking (Walker et al., 2018, 2). Another product is the direction and contacts for counsellor whom the target can contact when they have anxiety and share or any other problem that may lead to stress. This supportive product is the most important towards behaviour It will make the target group adopt a strategy of talking when they have a problem and therefore avoid worry or fear. Although the community might not like the idea of men sharing their problems, the outcomes will be encouraging to create a positive attitude on the program and therefore save the participants (Gordon, 2013, 1528).
  • Price- the price to pay for the support includes small little money to get the therapeutic product. The team will pay other expenses for support which includes fliers with contact of counsellors and other materials to read on what to do when in fear or worry among different life-challenging
  • Place- the support services and products will take place in an institution of higher learning, shopping centers as well as individual homes of the affected subjects. The support more so the one offering to counsel will also take place through the media, television and radio programs as well as messages through social media.


The team will also control the current behaviours of the subjects towards the desired ones. This stage involves triggers as described in the theory stage to remind the audience on the prescribed correct behaviors in the education and support stage.

  • Product- the product for control will be media messages including text messages, radio and television, social media and direct calls for those who are more affected. There will also be posters and billboards carrying messages on the importance of sharing to avoid stress and the dangers of self-harm behaviours when stresses.
  • Price- the subjects will require time to read the messages
  • Place- the platform for triggers will include different forms of public media, social media as well as mobile phones.


Promotion mix will apply for all the three marketing interventions since it will be advertising the whole campaign giving venues, dates, main activities as well as those required to attend (Tapp, & Spotswood, 2013, 207). It will be carried out through the media, posters as well as text messages.

Hug and Smack Intervention Mix

The campaign will use form combination of Hug to reward those who are not sharing their personal life that may lead to anxiety, those who are talking out their stress instead of self-harming and those who stop smoking, taking alcohol and drugs. Also, the team will use smack to prosecute those taking illegal drugs or harming themselves.

Stage 2: Testing Stage and Report

The whole plan will undergo a pilot test to find out the areas which need adjustments. The pilot study will take two months and carried out on a population of not more than 20 subjects. The results from the survey will be used to make adjustments on the marketing mix, prepare a time frame as well as the budget for the primary campaign.

Stage 3: Enact- Plan for the Implementation of the Program

Program time frame and critical milestones

The program will take 16 months. In the first four months, the team will carry out piloting and adjustment of the interventions. The remaining time will be the actual launch of the interventions. Other stages of the programs include:

Activity Time Description of the goal
Piloting  8 weeks By the end of the 8 weeks, the team should be ready with adjustments on the plan collected from the pilot
Education 5th month The team should be through with education program for the whole targeted population.
Support including therapy 10th month The team to be through with offering significant support apart from the ones which require regular basis like counselling
Counselling 14th month The team to have been reached almost every targeted person through one on one counselling
Feedback and report 16th month The team to have a readily analyzed report about the campaign and present it to significant stakeholders.


Resource allocation to elements of the intervention and marketing mix


Element Resource
Product Psychotherapist, counsellors
Price Time 16 months, commitment
Place Halls and transport vehicles
Promotion Roadshow vehicles, posters
Information Counsellors and finances
Support Psychotherapist counsellors and financial resources


Evaluation and monitoring plan

The department heads will monitor the activities of their team to compare with the initial plan. Also, they will evaluate the ability of the program to meet the objectives and make necessary changes.

Stage 4: Learn and Act

Evaluate and report

Reporting to the sponsors, stakeholders, partners, and audiences

All the stakeholders will get a regular update of the plan through emails. Audiences will get reports through meetings and follow up workshops. The final report will be availed to all participants and supporters.

Review and build of learning to the next wave of implementation

The team will analyze the whole project at the end to find out areas where they can make adjustments. The report will include areas of change in the marketing mix as well as the concentration of the target audience. The report will also provide adjustments on time frame and budget to ensure that the next campaign is more effective.


This work aimed at coming up with a plan of a social marketing campaign to address the issue of mental health and related behaviours. It started by identifying the target as young men between the age of 18 and 24.  The approach to address mental health in young men will impact because of its persuasive element. The plan constitutes a therapy counselling, education, and intervention for the target audience. The primary objective of the campaign is to change the behaviour of failure to seek mental health services and self-harm in young men.


Reference List

Blumberg, S.J., Clarke, T.C. and Blackwell, D.L., 2016. Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Men’s Use of Mental Health Treatments. NCHS Data Brief. Number 206. National Center for Health Statistics.

Corcoran, P., Griffin, E., Arensman, E., Fitzgerald, A.P. and Perry, I.J., 2015. Impact of the economic recession and subsequent austerity on suicide and self-harm in Ireland: an interrupted time series analysis. International journal of epidemiology44(3), pp.969-977.

Edgar, T., Huhman, M. and Miller, G.A., 2017. Where is the toothpaste? A systematic review of the use of the product strategy in social marketing. Social Marketing Quarterly, 23(1), pp.80-98.

Gordon, R., 2013. Unlocking the potential of upstream social marketing. European Journal of Marketing47(9), pp.1525-1547.

Kaess, M., Brunner, R. and Chanen, A., 2014. Borderline personality disorder in adolescence. Pediatrics134(4), pp.782-793.

Marsh, Sara. 2017.  A quarter of Young Men Self-Harm to Cope with Depression, says Survey. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 3 Mar. 2019]

McManus, S., Bebbington, P., Jenkins, R. and Brugha, T., 2016. Mental Health and Wellbeing in England: Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey 2014: a Survey Carried Out for NHS Digital by NatCen Social Research and the Department of Health Sciences, University of Leicester. NHS Digital.

Mens, T., 2016. Synchronic Self-Control and the Nature of Willpower (Master’s thesis).

Mogles, N. et al. (2018) ‘A computational model for designing energy behavior change interventions,’ User Modeling & User-Adapted Interaction, 28(1), pp. 1–34.

Morriss, R., Kapur, N., and Byng, R., 2013. Assessing the risk of suicide or self-harm in adults. Bmj347, p.f4572.

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Seidler, Z.E., Dawes, A.J., Rice, S.M., Oliffe, J.L. and Dhillon, H.M., 2016. The role of masculinity in men’s help-seeking for depression: a systematic review. Clinical Psychology Review49, pp.106-118.

Tapp, A. and Spotswood, F., 2013. From the 4Ps to COM-SM: reconfiguring the social marketing mix. Journal of Social Marketing, 3(3), pp.206-222.

Walker, N. et al. (2018) ‘Factors moderating the relative effectiveness of varenicline and nicotine replacement therapy in clients using smoking cessation services,’ Addiction, 113(2), pp. 313–324.

Wang, Y., Hunt, K., Nazareth, I., Freemantle, N. and Petersen, I., 2013. Do men consult less than women? An analysis of routinely collected UK general practice data. BMJ Open3(8), p.e003320.