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Towards a richer understanding of consumers in social marketing contexts: Revisiting the stage of change model

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In this paper, we present data from an 18-month-long longitudinal study of a sample of 40 people who received a test for cancer and who were subsequently advised by health professionals on the dietary changes that would lead to improved health. This study investigates the ways that behaviour change is instigated (or not) and how people cope with these changes. We use the Stages of Change model to categorise people by their dominant behavioural response to the test (maintainers, recyclers, no change). From these categorisations, we develop an in-depth understanding of the experience of their behavioural response. By looking at the three possible behavioural responses in this way, we provide insights into the different cognitive, emotional, and behavioural response to the disease trigger. We evaluate the implications for social marketing theory and public policy makers.
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Keywords: behavioural change; consumer behaviour; social marketing

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Edinburgh Napier University, UK 2: Lancaster University Management School, UK

Publication date: 01 February 2011

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