Social Marketing Key Concepts and Principles

3-session self-paced online course

iSMA Offers Social Marketing

Professional Certificate of Completion

The iSMA, ESMA and other affiliated global Social Marketing associations have identified a need for a short, high quality, low-cost, continuously available introduction course to Social Marketing that reflects iSMA endorsed concepts of Social Marketing and how they can be applied in a global context. Social Marketing Key Concepts and Principles is a three module self-paced online course that is continuously available all over the world and one that can be studied at times and at a pace that fits in with students needs and situation. This short course which takes approximately five hours to complete is an ideal stepping off point into other more advanced and specialised courses offered by iSMA its affiliated associations and academic partners.

The content of this new course is focused on the application of Social Marketing in a broad range of fifields including health, environment, social justice and social development reflecting UN SDG’s.

Social Marketing Key Concepts and Principles

3 session self paced online course

This continuously available online course is convenient to participants all over the world and one that can be studied at times and at a pace that fits in with students’ other commitments.

Cost: £50.00 – £250.00 GBP course rate dependent on attendee’s residence of a low, lower middle or upper middle income country as designated by the World Bank.



Course Format:

The course is to be delivered as a set of three high quality pre-recorded presenter inputs via an e-learning platform. The course is built around three taught sessions covering:

  1. Why Citizen centric policy and program development is necessary, and how Social Marketing can enable and enhance its delivery.
  2. What Social Marketing is, its core principle and six concepts as endorsed by iSMA and its affiliated associations.
  3. An introduction to Social Marketing planning and evaluation.

Each session includes tasks to be completed to check understanding, with the opportunity to share thoughts and ideas with other course participants about how to apply theory in practice. Prior to, and after each session students will be asked to complete designated pre-set free reading guides that will be sent to them in sequence.

As part of the course fee, students will also be given an electronic library of over twenty papers and guides to supplement the content covered in the three taught modules.

After the completion of each module, students will be asked to complete a multiple-choice review of learning questionnaire and receive automated feedback on their answers. Students will also have a chance to participate in regular live Q&A sessions with course presenters.

Course Expectations for iSMA Professional Certificate of Completion:

Students who satisfactorily complete all three self-assessments, read the six course booklets and participate in the live course sessions will be awarded a professional certificate of completion endorsed by iSMA, ESMA and other supporting associations.

Instructors: Professor Jeff French, Sarah Cork from Brilliant Futures and University of Brighton, and John Landels form the National Social Marketing Centre (UK).

Scholarship: iSMA will provide a full free scholarship for one student on this course four times each year. To apply for a scholarship, please complete this short application form.

Instructor: Prof Jeff French, PhD, MBA, MSc, DipHE, BA, Cert.Ed.

Instructor: Prof Jeff French, PhD, MBA, MSc, DipHE, BA, Cert.Ed.

President to the Board of the International Social Marketing Association

Jeff French is a global thought leader in Social Marketing, social communication, behavioural influence and citizen focused programme planning and evaluation. Jeff has published over 100 academic papers and five books plus numerous guides and tool kits on these subjects. Jeff is a visiting Professor at Brighton University and teaches at a number of other universities on a regular basis. 

Jeff was previously Director of Policy and Communication at the UK Health Development Agency and a senior civil servant in the UK Department of Health. In 2004 Jeff headed the UK government review of Social Marketing and set up the National Social Marketing Centre in 2006. In 2009 Jeff became the CEO of Strategic Social Marketing.

Jeff works with Governments, NGOs and some of the world’s biggest private companies. Jeff has also worked for the WHO, the UN and the European Centre for Disease Control. Jeff is the co-author of the European Centre for Disease Control (ECDC) technical guidance on social marketing planning and author of two new UN tool kits and course on Designing and implementing campaigns in support of vaccination efforts to prevent and reduce the spread of COVID-19. Jeff was a leading member of the European Union funded E-Com EU review of pandemic communication and behaviour change research programme.

Jeff is a member of several national and international policy committees including the UN UNITA working group on road safety. Jeff is also a member of the Editorial Boards of five professional Journals, a board member of the European Social Marketing Association and President of the International Social Marketing association.

Jeff is a sought-after keynote speaker at international conferences and chairs the conference planning committees for the European and World social marketing conferences. Jeffs book; ‘Social Marketing and Public Health: Theory and Practice, 2nd edition’, was highly commended in the 2018, BMA Medical Book Awards and Jeff’s Book with Ross Gordon; Strategic Social Marketing 2nd edition is a standard text book on many university reading lists.

Instructor: Sarah Cork

Instructor: Sarah Cork

Sarah Cork is a Senior Lecturer in Social Purpose and Social Marketing, Consumer Psychology and Marketing Ethics and Social Responsibility at Brighton School of Business and Law, University of Brighton and leads the teaching of social marketing at Undergraduate and Postgraduate level. Her research focuses on bringing together the public, private and third sector to make positive lifestyle behaviors more easy, attractive, affordable and socially normal.

She is also the Business Schools Learning and Teaching lead and Wellbeing Lead and is
currently working on a co-creation project with students to deliver resilience and wellbeing activities as part of the curriculum.

She combines this with practical experience as founder and CEO of social marketing
consultancy, Brilliant Futures, combining social marketing and behavioral science to
encourage and enable positive health, social and environmental behaviors. Projects have included tackling a range of public health issues including mental and emotional wellbeing, healthy eating, physical activity, sunbed usage, binge drinking, smoking in pregnancy and wider issues including road safety, sustainable transport, increasing access to employment and reducing social isolation in older people.

Her most recent project includes the development of ‘My Big Box of Happiness’ a practical resource for children to develop habits for emotional and mental wellbeing and resilience.

Instructor: John Landels, MA, MSc, Diploma in Management

Instructor: John Landels, MA, MSc, Diploma in Management

Secretary to the Board of the European Social Marketing Association.

A late arrival to social marketing after a previous career in the transport industry, John has worked for the UK National Social Marketing Centre (NSMC) since 2014.

An experienced researcher, John has worked with a range of hard-to-reach audiences to identify insights in the areas of obesity, alcohol abuse and physical activity. Most recently, he has been conducting research into Covid-19 vaccine hesitancy in the east of England.

John has developed and implemented a range of social marketing interventions addressing challenges such as poor school attendance and literacy levels among young people in parts of England. He also set up and managed the successful and highly praised Hastings Safe Space alcohol project which was shortlisted in 2018 for an award by the UK’s Health Service Journal.

Currently, John is advising several UK sports organisations on the planning and implementation of their physical activity programmes.

Outside of the UK, John has worked on a range of social marketing projects in Jordan in the areas of water conservation and energy efficiency. He also planned and implemented a complex evaluation of a regional sanitation behavior project in Cambodia.

John is a respected social marketing trainer and regularly teaches a range of social marketing courses both to public and private organisations, as well as NGOs, across the world.



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