Globally, rural water supply and sanitation projects
have led to smaller decreases in water- and sanitation-related disease than
expected. In many cases, the hygiene and sanitation behaviors of the users prove
to be equally if not more important than the clean water technologies and
latrines in reducing illness and improving community health. Changing health
habits requires linking a health issue and positive behaviors to the real
motivators for the target audience.
IDE applies rural marketing not only to motivate people
to purchase beneficial products, but also to motivate them to adopt improved
hygiene and health behaviors. IDE has expertise in social marketing,
using the principles of commercial marketing research, campaign design, and
delivery to spur changes in behavior. Rather than simply transferring health
information, social marketing campaigns combine an understanding of people’s
knowledge, attitudes, and practices concerning an issue with an understanding of
their fears and hopes to design messages that motivate behavior change.