Journal of Social Marketing, Volume 6, Issue 2, Page 193-210, April 2016.
Purpose This paper aims to investigate whether application of a community-based social marketing (CBSM) principle, namely, increasing the visibility of a target behaviour in the community, can change social norms surrounding the behaviour. Design/methodology/approach A repeated measures quasi-experimental design was used to evaluate the Victorian Health Promotion Foundation’s Walk to School 2013 programme. The target population for the survey were caregivers of primary school children aged between 5-12 years old. The final sample size across the three online surveys administered was 102 respondents. Findings The results suggest that the programme increased caregivers’ perceptions that children in their community walked to and from school and that walking to and from school is socially acceptable. Originality/value The study contributes to addressing the recent call for research examining the relationship between CBSM principles and programme outcomes. Further, the results provide insight for enhancing the social norms approach, which has traditionally relied on changing social norms exclusively through media campaigns.