Social, Societal, and Socially Responsible Marketing

Nowadays companies are required to take care of long term and overall interests of customers. As a number of social issues like the global environmental issues, the exhaustion of natural resources, and the infinitely increasing numbers of population have appeared companies’ effort for long-term interests of customer increases demands for social benefits. A number of health and social issues are concerned with behavior causes that are the result of voluntary behavior. The production and operation should take the long-term benefits of society into account as a whole as well as the interest of consumers which is the common ground of the social marketing concept. The corporations have to find out what target groups want and need and derive maximum satisfaction from customers while they enhance and maintain welfares in the community. The main concept of social marketing is providing a way of dealing with such problems by changing the behavior of people for a healthier lifestyle.

Social Marketing

With the appearance of social marketing, a number of questions have come up. The questions are social marketing means using the mass media, and hard-sell approach, social marketing is a ‘downstream’ approach about individual behavior change, and social marketing is nothing new.

Social Societal and Socially Responsible Marketing

Social marketing sometimes uses mass media but not all the time. Many people are confused between the two concepts: social marketing and social advertising. Social marketing is a mixture of other concepts of marketing such as product, place, price, and promotion. These 4 concepts are called the “4 Ps” of social marketing. With this marketing mix, the enterprises can derive the best benefits to the target group. Voluntary behavior change is the concept of social marketing. If enterprises want consumers to change their behavior, they would also offer something that corresponds to their giving up in return. The enterprises are required to understand how to offer equally appealing interests when they ask people to change their behavior such as increasing satisfaction with life for giving up something, feeling comfort, happiness, and relaxation, and high achievement. Social marketing can affect individual behavior, called downstream, but it can also influence upstream such as the whole community. The basic idea of social marketing is nothing new like offering consumers benefits in return. However, the concept making it different is its effort to enhance and change the quality of society. What makes social marketing is something new is that corporation puts essential implements for people’s demand in a system into the target group.

Societal Marketing

Societal marketing is any form of corporation that is concerned with a benefit-oriented marketing strategy considering corporate social responsibility. The concept of societal marketing can be articulated when societal marketers combine all plans and activities in the company to serve consumers after identifying what consumers are looking for and need while they also contribute to improving social well-fare. Priority of societal marketing is a direct profit for the organization and then marketers desire the benefits for the society. Societal marketing considers what consumers want and need and the well-being of communities. Societal marketing aims at the benefits of an organization based on social responsibility.

Socially Responsible Marketing

Socially responsible marketing is one that accomplishes the ideal goal in social community in areas of economic, discretionary expectation, behavioral, and legal. Socially responsible marketing is the concept that enterprises should consider how to derive the best benefit for society in the long term. Socially responsible enterprises desire to produce valuable products. Whenever companies produce desirable products, satisfaction and interests in the long-term are immediately provided. By appealing to consumers by showing and proving their responsibility, the companies can differentiate themselves from other companies.

Comparison of Above Three Types of Marketing

Different from societal marketing, social marketing tries to bring more social benefits to the broader community, not to corporate organizations. Social marketing puts more value on social gain, target group’s gain, and benefits that are not shown visibly than on those of organizations. Social marketing uses commercial techniques and strategies to acquire the goal of a better society. Social marketing encourages society members to consume merit goods such as fundraising for non-profit organizations and to discourage consumers from buying demerit goods through such as non-smoking campaigns. Societal marketing is distinctively different from social marketing. Admissible marketing in combining issues of social responsibility into commercial marketing strategies is a concept of societal marketing. On the contrary, social marketing uses commercial marketing strategies as tools and techniques to achieve goals for great social goods. Social marketing is more fastened with customer-orientated while societal marketing is more concerned with benefit orientation.

Socially responsible marketing is to make products but to be responsible at the same time while social marketing use strategy that provides a way of solving such social problem by encouraging people to change their behavior. If socially responsible marketing is used by any form of business, social marketing is only used by such as charities, health services, and etc. As similar to societal marketing, socially responsible marketing’s priority purpose is making money by selling products then companies try to be responsible for their product.

Examples of Social, Societal, and Socially Responsible Marketing

The societal marketing concept has arisen with relationships between any other relative partnerships that help them respond to customer wants such as environmentalists and businesses. There is definitely a distinguishable change from not only previous charities such as donations or support to the environmental cause but also normal environmental commercials like making T-shirts or posters to alert people about environmental crises. What makes them distinguishable is that environmentalist groups are engaged with business partners when they try to solve the problem of making decisions on what strategies they use. There are a couple of examples where enterprises are involved with environmental groups for deriving more benefits for business including environmental and social benefits. Proctor & Gamble uses the strategy of the good image by introducing fat-free oil, which contributes to reducing the ratio of heart disease. Any car company producing CNG cars can be a good example. CNG car means compressed natural gas car. It is a cleaner and safer alternative resource to fuels like gasoline, diesel, LPG. This environmentally friendly car has become successful in both economical and environmental benefits. Also, McDonald’s is one of the best examples to show most materials of societal marketing. They contributed to not only social benefits but also environmental benefits. In the 1980s, McDonald instituted a lot of environmentally positive processes such as reducing consumption of paper bags and straws by reducing the weight and using recycled paper and cardboard packaging. They stopped using polystyrene, which is used for the clamshells, for hydrocarbon, which is used for plastic foam. In the 1990s, McDonald put 100 million dollars on remodeling and reconstructing restaurants by buying recycled materials. Its project is called McRecyle. Their effort on environmental improvement through marketing has become their strategy and it causes massive amounts of benefits on their business too. Their promoting environmental friendliness strongly attracted customers. As the importance of societal marketing is increasing, companies have to have more research on how to change and influence consumer attitudes. In traditional marketing practice, companies do not use the strategy of environmental friendliness to influence customers. They would like to attract people with commercial marketing, analysis, planning, implementation, and programs. Those strategies bring about desired exchanges between companies and target groups for mutual gain. Strengthening the positive image of the brand through environmental and social friendliness of products and strategies is what makes societal marketing represent a departure from traditional marketing practice.

Social marketing is reasonably distinct from traditional business marketing practice. While traditional marketing is more concerned with consumer’s preferences and opinions without depth, social marketing mainly focuses on full values of belief in the market. Social marketing has to have more research on ‘what for what?’ to gain affirmation on the product. If the marketing is concerned with only consumer-orientated, social marketing focuses on not only traditional marketing’s consumer-orientated but also on a key mechanism, exchange. In social marketing, consumers are deserved to be active participants in communication between companies and target groups. In social marketing, there are typically four types that are changing current behavior, restricting on an old behavior, adopting a new behavior, and rejecting a potential behavior. A number of instances that the example of social marketing of changing a current behavior is pregnant women taking folic acid supplements, which helps to reduce the scene of birth defect. Another example is that parents should wear life vests, as a model to their children and it will reduce the rate of drowning victims. Some examples of abandoning an old behavior are campaigns of quitting smoking, which reduces the rate of disturbance of lung cancer and birth defect, and not watering your lawn if it rains which enhances the water supply. No drinking alcohol when women are pregnant, not letting children swim alone, leaving a baby alone in the bathtub which also reduces drowning victims, and stopping using toxic fertilizer to improve water supply and quality are good examples of rejecting a potential behavior. Campaigning of taking a folic acid supplement that decreases occurrences of birth defects, wearing a life vest on the boat, and changing lawn to plants to raise the quality of water are examples that show social marketing of changing behavior.

One well-represented example of socially responsible marketing is the Coca-Cola Company. The Coca-Cola Company is a company that is globally engaged with socially responsible marketing because this company has become one of the most successful corporations that markets all over the world. According to Coca-Cola Company’s online website, they deal with their belief and say that they desire to derive customer’s satisfaction with the high quality of its product and how they are trying to contribute to the social affair for the benefits of the community. On the website, the Coca-Cola Company talks about health issues like cavities (dental caries), sugar diabetes, and obesity that would increase the risk of heart disease even though this accusation would change the consumer behavior on its product. Not many corporations would like to accuse themselves and talk about health issues that their product is linked to as Coca-Cola Company does. Its website also says that Coca-Cola Company not only sponsors a number of health programs like Special Olympics, Coca-Cola Cup, and etc but also donates a sudden amount of time and money for improving the quality of society like building youth centers. Their donations take all over the places in the world where Coca-Cola Company is responsible for its product. Like this, Coca-Cola Company is socially responsible for its product that would cause health risks by donating and sponsoring to the community. This example shows what makes socially responsible marketing represent a departure from traditional marketing. In socially responsible marketing, corporations should be able to take responsibility for their product. Companies do not have to donate any money or time that they earn to the community. However, most companies donate time and money to the public to build up brand image contributing to the community.

To conclude, social marketing is the application of a marketing strategy that focuses on changing and enhancing specific behavior goals for better societal benefits. It provides a way of solving the social problem by urging people to accept a better lifestyle. If social marketing is more consumers orientated, societal marketing is more benefits orientated of business. Society’s long-term interest is societal marketing’s secondary value. Socially responsible marketing is concerned with responsibility for corporations’ products. Companies take responsibility by donating money to the public. Those three types of marketing represent a departure from traditional marketing. The common ground of these three is concerning the public benefits and enhancing community. Since social marketing has just emerged, its materials should be looked at closely in the advanced passion that business marketers have analyzed and been studying many marketing practices over many years.

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