Social Marketing to Young Consumers


Delivering Change for the Better: Showcasing Social Marketing's Effectiveness in Reaching Young Consumers, Special issue of Young Consumers; Deadline 29 Feb 2016



Submission Deadline: 29 FEBRUARY 2016

Guest Editors:

  • Dr Denni Arli, Griffith University
  • Professor Sharyn Rundle-Thiele, Griffith University


Childhood obesity is a serious public health challenge in the 21st century. Globally in 2013 the number of overweight children under the age of 5 years is estimated to be over 42 million. Close to 31 million of these are living in developing countries (World Health Organization, 2015). A key concern is the increased risk that these overweight and obese children will progress to obese adults and suffer chronic diseases at a much younger age (Lobstein et al., 2004). Further, a nutritionally impoverished diet can adversely affect children´s learning and behaviour and prevent children from achieving full growth potential (Dani et al., 2005). In addition to the health-related risks of obesity, children´s self-esteem and peer group relationships are impacted (Lobstein et al., 2004). Social marketing relies on voluntary compliance – rather than legal, economic or coercive forms of power (Kotler et al., 2002) to deliver change for the better. Social marketing programs targeting young consumers and/or their carers can deliver change for the better. Young people, as they move from childhood to adulthood, have to work through a broad range of issues such as body image, alcohol, smoking, bullying, illicit drugs and media. This stage of life can also be very confusing and challenging for young people (Patton et al., 2002).

This special issue seeks papers that showcase social marketing’s effectiveness in delivering change for the better for young consumers.

Topic for the Special Issue

We welcome both theoretical and empirical contributions, and papers that address various public health challenges relating to young consumers. We offer a few topics to provide a sense of what the special issue seeks to address. These topics are illustrative and are not intended to set boundaries in terms of the key themes of interest: obesity and healthy eating among youth, depression, substance use, smoking, safe sex, physical activities and bullying.

Submission Process

All submissions will go through the Young Consumer regular double-blind review process and follow the standard norms and processes. Manuscripts submitted to this special issue must strictly follow the guidelines for Young Consumers. For more information about Young Consumers, please refer to the Emerald website at:

About the Guest Editors

Denni Arli is a Senior Lecturer at the Department of Marketing at Griffith University and Researcher at Social Marketing@Griffith, Australia. He received his PhD from the University of New South Wales, Australia. His research interests include social marketing, consumer ethics and corporate social responsibility. He has published in leading journals, including Journal of Business Ethics, Journal of International Business Studies, Marketing Intelligence and Planning, International Journal of Consumer Studies, Journal of Promotion Management, International Journal Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Marketing, Journal of Asia Pacific Business, Social Responsibility Journal.

Sharyn Rundle-Thiele is the Director of Social Marketing@Griffith in Australia. She is also Full Professor at the Department of Marketing, Griffith University. She is the current Editor-in-Chief of Journal of Social Marketing and President of ANZMAC. She has published and presented over 100 refereed papers, co-authors a leading Marketing Principles text book, teaches a wide range of Marketing courses, and been awarded in excess of two million dollars in research funding. Her work has appeared in the Industrial Marketing Management, European Journal of Marketing, Journal of Business Research, Journal of Travel Research, International Journal of Bank Marketing and Journal of Services Marketing among many others.


Dani, J., Burrill, C. and Demmig-Adams, B. (2005), “The remarkable role of nutrition in learning and behaviour”, Nutrition and Food Science, Vol. 35 No. 4, pp. 258-263.

Kotler, P., Roberto, N. and Lee, N.R. (2002), Social marketing: Improving the quality of life, 2nd edn., SAGE Publications, Thousand Oaks, CA.

Lobstein, T., Baur, L., and Uauy, R. (2004), “Obesity in children and young carers: A crisis in public health”, Obesity Reviews, Vol. 25 No. 1, pp. 4-85.

Patton, G. C., Coffey, C., Carlin, J. B., Degenhardt, L., Lynskey, M., & Hall, W. (2002), “Cannabis use and mental health in young people: cohort study”, BMJ, Vol. 325 No. 7374, pp. 1195-1198.

World Health Organization (2015) Global Strategy on Diet, Physical Activity and Health. Available online at