Social marketing of contraceptives

Draper Fund Rep. 1986 Dec;(15):21-6.


PIP: Application of commercial marketing techniques has not only increased awareness, acceptability, and use of modern contraceptives in developing countries, but also overcome logistic problems in service delivery. The ability of contraceptive social marketing to reach large numbers and to treat contraceptives as common consumer products has helped to diminish social and religious constraints associated with family planning. Each contraceptive social marketing program is built around a theme tailored to meet specific cultural, social, and management requirements. The primary target populations are those who cannot afford regular commercial products and those who are not adequately reached by government programs. In countries such as Sri Lanka and Jamaica, profit is not a primary sales objective and retail prices are highly subsidized to make products affordable to low-income people. In contrast, the Colombian and Thai programs use contraceptive social marketing to help offset the operating costs of rural community-based programs and seek profits. The most impressive contraceptive social marketing sales performances have been recorded in Bangladesh, Colombia, Egypt, and Jamaica. The main reason contraceptive social marketing is more cost-efficient than other modes of contraceptive distribution is that the cost of product delivery is assumed by the commercial system. Although there has been some interest in making these programs self-sufficient financially, this step has tended to undermine the purpose of serving lower income groups.

MeSH terms

  • Commerce*
  • Contraception*
  • Delivery of Health Care*
  • Developing Countries*
  • Economics
  • Family Planning Services*
  • Health
  • Health Planning*
  • Health Services Administration*
  • Marketing of Health Services*
  • Organization and Administration*