separately when constructing a persuasive campaign.” Thus, to measure outcomes, it is necessary to consider carefully which behavior one wants to change. In the case of obesity, it is much easier to change—and to measure changes in—food companies’ actions than people’s behaviors with regard to food. “We are kind of a long way from being able to link changes in exposure to changes in diet,” a presenter commented.

Rideout agreed, noting that “you have to be very precise about what you want to accomplish.” In her view, the suitable goal for a social marketing campaign is to raise awareness of risks and other information that can support behavioral changes. “It’s the first step,” she argued. Hornik responded that raising awareness should not be the only goal for a social marketing campaign. He suggested, that, although institutional and other communication interventions may need to occur together, “there’s a fair amount of evidence for behavioral effects of media campaigns.”

Is it then necessary to “invent a whole new system to measure both the exposure and the outcome”? another participant wondered. Hornik acknowledged that, for example, having a national cohort sample would make it easier to assess the effectiveness of strategies. He believes, however, that by combining the kinds of exposure data discussed by Rideout with data on changes such as those discussed by Ng, the approaches he described should make it possible to make some valuable claims.


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