Master Thesis on the Effectiveness of Using Humour in Social Marketing Campaigns

Social marketing campaigns are developed to change or promote certain behaviours, resulting in the improvement of society’s overall health. Although matters related to sex and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are highly suitable for such campaigns, STDs are often accompanied by taboo and stigma, posing barriers for effective marketing. Humour has been shown to be effective in lifting the effects of such taboo and stigma, making it a potentially useful tool in making campaigns more effective in terms of achieving higher levels of intention to talk and test for STDs. Moreover, self-efficacy might enlarge this effect. A survey has been conducted amongst 163 participants to examine the supposed effects of humour and self-efficacy. The subsequent analyses revealed that humour did not significantly improve the effectiveness of the social marketing campaign to promote STD testing. However, although self-efficacy did not moderate the supposed relationship between using humour and intentions, a significant positive direct effect between self-efficacy and intentions was identified. In conclusion, simple humour does not boost the effectiveness of campaigns regarding STD related topics, but higher levels of self-efficacy do influence these intentions. Future campaigns can take these results into account in tailoring social marketing campaigns to their respective audiences effectively.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen