This research work aims was on Social Marketing Dimensions and Customer patronage of beer brands in Enugu North Local Government Area L.G.A. Four research questions and four hypotheses were formulated. The research adopted two theories that guided the study, the Theory of Reasoned Action and Social Cognitive Theory. The research adopted a survey method which made use of questionnaire. The population of the study comprised of beer drinkers aged 18 years and above in Enugu North local government area of Enugu state which is made up of 326,900 people. To derive the sample size, the Taro Yamane formula was used to determine the sample size of 400. However, during the course of questionnaire distribution and collection, 400 questionnaires were administered and 340 were returned. The test of hypotheses was conducted using multiple linear regression with the aid of SPSS Software Version 20. Findings from the analysis showed that there was a positive, significant relationship between social marketing dimensions and customer patronage of beer brands in Enugu North L.G.A. It was therefore the recommendation of this study that social marketing should explore customer’s behaviour, attitudes in order to identify and develop suitable campaigns to change their behaviour to desired levels.
- Background of the Study
The concept of social marketing has gained widespread recognition in the field of marketing. Social marketing can be seen as the design, implementation and control of programs calculated to influence the acceptability of social ideas and involving considerations of product planning, pricing, communications, distribution and marketing research (Kotler & Zaltman, (1971).
Social marketing began as a discipline in the 1970s, when Kotler & Zaltman (1970) argued that the same marketing strategies that have been so successful in selling products and services to consumers could also be used to promote socially beneficial ideas, attitudes, and behaviors. Hence, social marketing is the adaptation of commercial marketing technologies to programs designed to influence the voluntary behavior of target audiences to improve their personal welfare and that of the society of which they are part of (Brenkert, 2002). The use of such marketing techniques has been expanding in our society. For example, most persons are familiar with campaigns to “market” political candidates and their platforms, energy conversation and abstain from smoking. Many of these efforts encompassing various aspects of marketing go beyond simple advertising. For instance, some “stop smoking” organizations sponsor informational seminars, distribute special products designed to alleviate the desire to smoke in those who want to quit smoking, and initiate publicity aimed at the general public regarding the disadvantages of smoking. There is substantial pressure within the discipline of marketing and among the general public to expand the application of modern marketing’s tools and theories in the dissemination of social ideas (Lazer & Kelly, 1973). However like any new social development, this trend may have positive and negative societal effects.
On the positive dimension, there are sufficient literature which illustrate how marketing thinking has improved the sale ability of useful social programs (Kotler, 1975). However, on the negative side, it is quite possible that the widespread involvement of marketing professionals in the marketing of social ideas may raise severe ethical problems and further turn public opinion against marketers and the marketing field (Smith, 2001).
In the private sector, marketers seek to influence voluntary consumer spending and choice. Marketers attempt to influence behaviour through behavioural shaping or reinforcement strategies although consumers may decide not to buy. Thus, a marketer’s basic talents lie in influencing voluntary behavior, and the talents are incorporated in social marketing (Gene, 1999).
Social marketing is becoming increasingly relevant to the developing world. Success of social programmes has significantly contributed to the process of development in the countries of the third World. The success has been attributed to the adoption of marketing approach to the social/development programmes. For promoting any social idea or issue it is not enough to prepare the communication programme. Social marketing involves the marketing mix and dimensions, not simply advertising (Hastings and Angus, 2011). Like commercial marketing, social marketing involves its own marketing dimensions or mix:
According to Peattie et al (2009), social marketing dimensions include: social proposition, accessibility, social costs of involvement and social communication. Based on the foregoing, the primary essence and aim of this study is to carry out an empirical analysis of social marketing dimensions and customer patronage of beer brands in Enugu North, L.G.A.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Social marketing applications have become a method often used to positively influence social issues all over the world. The moral dimension of social marketing, being parallel to this, has gained importance. The goal of social marketing is to direct the behaviors that have been identified of individuals and groups to “the better” in terms of society. Social marketing is an endeavour that can be engaged in by profit making organization (e.g a liquor company program encouraging responsible drinking), as well as by nonprofit and public organizations. It is used to influence an audience to change their behaviour for the sake of improving health or themselves, preventing injuries, protecting the environment or contributing to the community.
The lack of social marketing programmes that will address the issue of environmental unfriendly activities by organizations is a serious threat to healthy environment. Organizations engage themselves in things like air or water pollution, waste dumping and unsafe beer bottles. Also, people who tend to drink without ethical dispositions that they have to be responsible for their actions after drinking would be advised against the dangers of irresponsible drinking and driving.
More also, a lot of people do not know that they can build and maintain relationships with beer brand organizations and win amazing gifts as loyal customers of such organizations beer brand.
On the basis of the foregoing, this study is basically motivated to carry out an empirical analysis of social marketing dimensions and customer patronage of beer brands in Enugu North, L.G.A.