The integration of health promotion and social marketing.

Perspectives in public health

PubMedID: 19994643

Griffiths J, Blair-Stevens C, Parish R. The integration of health promotion and social marketing. Perspect Public Health. 2009;129(6):268-71.
The urgency and scale of contemporary health challenges are enormous. The review It's Our Health! published in 2006 found that social marketing had considerable potential to increase the effectiveness of health improvement work, with the intention that it should build on core health promotion principles and not replace them. Health promotion has, however, lost its focus and identity in recent years in some parts of the country, partly due to repeated organizational change, and it has suffered from a lack of proactive workforce development. Over the last year, the National Social Marketing Centre (NSMC) and the Shaping the Future of Health Promotion Collaboration (StFofHP), hosted by the Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH), have explored the relationship between social marketing and health promotion and led a debate with stakeholders. A Delphi consultation with an expert panel drawn from specialists and strategic leaders in several settings, and the academic community, is currently under way and will report in the autumn. Findings so far emphasize the wide variation in understanding and interpretation of the two skill sets, much confusion about definitions and what added value both health promotion and social marketing bring to health improvement. Some of the distinctive contributions of both are described in this paper.