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SKY Social Marketing Handbook

10 March, 2023

How do you stop a teenager from taking up smoking? 

Back in 2014 we launched SKY Girls, a multimedia tobacco prevention campaign for adolescent girls in sub-Saharan Africa, in response to this question. SKY was designed to strip the aspirational value out of smoking, using a host of channels including a print magazine, radio, TV, social media and on-ground activities to reach and influence young women. 

Over the past ten years, the questions we’ve asked ourselves have broadened and evolved. How do you help an adolescent girl in Botswana to live life on her own terms, rather than following the crowd? How do you show a Nigerian teen that financial services are for her – not just for other people? How do you support a Kenyan 15-year-old to resist the pressure to have sex until she feels ready? 

Sitting above all these questions is one, even bigger, question: how do you support people to adopt attitudes and behaviours that will help them thrive? 

The SKY Social Marketing Handbook is our answer. Launched in partnership with our SKY teams across sub-Saharan Africa, the Handbook is a user’s guide to designing and launching a programme that changes behaviour for good. It covers everything from the basics of social marketing theory, to identifying and researching your target audience, to engaging stakeholders and partners, launching your campaign across multiple online and offline channels, and measuring your impact. It’s designed to be simple, practical and tangible, and incorporates some of the biggest lessons we’ve learned from running SKY over the past (almost) ten years.  

Whether you’re a sustainability manager trying to help your customers adopt more eco-friendly behaviours, or an NGO hoping to encourage uptake of health services, there is something in the Handbook for you. We hope you enjoy reading it – and do let us know what you think. 

By Sarah Howden

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