Social Marketing: Theoretical and Practical Perspectives

By Marvin E. Goldberg; Martin Fishbein et al. | Go to book overview

Chapter 20
Effective Health Promotion
Among Communities of Color:
The Potential of Social Marketing

June A. Flora
Caroline Schooler
Stanford University School of Medicine

Rosalind M. Pierson
The California Wellness Foundation


ABSTRACT

There is a general assumption on the part of many health communication planners that culture matters. This chapter identifies and articulates how social marketing principles can effectively guide the development, implementation, and evaluation of culturally appropriate and relevant health promotion programs. The emphasis on audience in social marketing provides a conceptual framework for incorporating culture in health promotion programs. It discusses how to incorporate issues of cultural appropriateness and relevance to three essential social marketing principles: audience orientation, tailoring, and exchange theory. Identifying and understanding how racial and ethnic cultures differ and how this variance affects the health behavior change process can lead to more effective health promotion campaigns.1

The health status of African Americans, Latino Americans, Asian Americans, and other people of color in this country remains unconscionably low when contrasted with that of many Anglo Americans. This disparity is not new, reflecting a historical trend that is evident across the leading causes of death and disease ( Braithwaite & Lythcott, 1989). The dispro-

____________________
1
Various terms are used to refer to members of underrepresented ethnic and racial groups. The term people of color is used to describe persons who do not belong to the Anglo majority. A variety of words are used to denote persons who belong to diverse cultural, ethnic, and racial groups.

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