Lee & Kotler (2011) define social marketing as "differing from other areas of marketing only with respect to the objectives of the marketer and his or her organization. Social marketing seeks to influence social behaviors not to benefit the marketer, but to benefit the target audience and the general society." This technique has been used extensively in international health programs, for example Avon Breast Cancer Crusade, by Avon, a leading provider of women’s health and beauty products. Avon started their crusade against breast cancer in 1992 and has remained one of the most powerful examples of cause marketing today. The Avon Breast Cancer Crusade chose to brand its products with the Pink Ribbon that has become synonymous with breast cancer.
Since its inception, the campaign has raised over $585 million in funds that have been disbursed over 50 countries. These funds help programs with initiatives in: Education and awareness
Screening and diagnosis
Access to treatment and services
Such marketing talks to the consumer, not about the product. According to Lee & Kotler (2011), the planning process takes this consumer focus into account by addressing the elements of the "marketing mix." This refers to decisions about 1) the conception of a Product, 2) Price, 3) Place, and 4) Promotion. These are often called the "Four Ps" of marketing.
As an example, the marketing mix strategy for the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade campaign for women might include the following elements:
The product could be any of these three behaviors: getting an annual mammogram, seeing a physician each year for a breast exam and performing monthly breast self-exams.
The price of engaging in these behaviors includes the monetary costs of the mammogram and exam, potential discomfort and/or embarrassment, time and even the possibility of actually finding a lump.
The place that these medical and educational services are offered might be a mobile van, local hospitals, clinics and worksites, depending upon the needs of the target audience.
Promotion could be done through public service announcements, billboards, mass mailings, media events and community outreach.
The "publics" the company might need to address include its target audience (let's say women age 40 to 65), the people who influence their decisions like their husbands or physicians, policymakers, public service directors at local radio stations, as well as the board of directors and office staff.
I believe that the above mentioned campaign is very successful, because by selling Pink Ribbon branded products, hosting yearly breast cancer walks in cities around the world, and establishing registry tribute funds , the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade has stayed at the forefront of the battle against breast cancer.
Avon has also established the Avon Foundation Breast