Strengthening social marketing research: Harnessing "insight" through ethnography

Brennan, Linda, Fry, Marie-Louise and Previte, Josephine (2015) Strengthening social marketing research: Harnessing "insight" through ethnography. Australasian Marketing Journal, 23 4: 286-293. doi:10.1016/j.ausmj.2015.10.003

Author Brennan, Linda
Fry, Marie-Louise
Previte, Josephine
Title Strengthening social marketing research: Harnessing "insight" through ethnography
Journal name Australasian Marketing Journal
ISSN 1441-3582
Publication date 2015-11-01
Year available 2015
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.ausmj.2015.10.003
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 23
Issue 4
Start page 286
End page 293
Total pages 8
Place of publication Oxford, United Kingdom
Publisher Elsevier
Language eng
Abstract This paper aims to challenge social marketers to extend their research repertoire beyond restrictive ‘individualised rationalities’ driving reliance on scientifically proven evidence, population data and focus groups as insight-oriented research. Social marketing, as a discipline, is constrained by using techniques aimed at (dis)proving scientific hypotheses, thus misses the mark when it comes to creating effective social change. Gaining insight into human conduct requires research tools that examine the deep ecological context of behaviour. Ethnography has the capability to generate deep culturally based insights that captures the social world through the eyes of the consumer, yet to date remains largely underutilised in social marketing. This article explores the value of ethnography as a social marketing research method enabling in-depth and meaningful engagement with the social and cultural experiences and the performative practice that is the manifestation of human existence.
Keyword Social marketing
Research insight
Behaviour change
Social change
Behavioural ecology
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2016 Collection
UQ Business School Publications
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Citation counts: Scopus Citation Count Cited 2 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Tue, 29 Dec 2015, 10:51:10 EST by System User on behalf of Scholarly Communication and Digitisation Service