Social marketing to address attitudes and behaviours related to preventable injuries in British Columbia, Canada

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Social marketing is a tool used in the domain of public health for prevention and public education. Because injury prevention is a priority public health issue in British Columbia, Canada, a 3-year consultation was undertaken to understand public attitudes towards preventable injuries and mount a province-wide social marketing campaign aimed at adults aged 25–55 years.


Public response to the campaign was assessed through an online survey administered to a regionally representative sample of adults within the target age group between 1 and 4 times per year on an ongoing basis since campaign launch. A linear regression model was applied to a subset of this data (n=5186 respondents) to test the association between exposure to the Preventable campaign and scores on perceived preventability of injuries as well as conscious forethought applied to injury-related behaviours.


Campaign exposure was significant in both models (preventability: β=0.27, 95% CI 0.20 to 0.35; conscious thought: β=0.24, 95% CI 0.13 to 0.35), as was parental status (preventability: β=0.12, 95% CI 0.03 to 0.21; conscious thought: β=0.18, 95% CI 0.06 to 0.30). Exposure to the more recent campaign slogan was predictive of 0.47 higher score on conscious thought (95% CI 0.27 to 0.66).


This study provides some evidence that the Preventable approach is having positive effect on attitudes and behaviours related to preventable injuries in the target population. Future work will seek to compare these data to other jurisdictions as the Preventable social marketing campaign expands to other parts of Canada.

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