Global Conference on Social Marketing and Franchising

The Global Health Conference on Social Marketing and Franchising was held at Kochi, Kerala, India from 3rd-5th December 2013 with support of the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, the Indian Institute of Corporate Affairs (IICA) and HLL Lifecare Ltd with the theme "Achieving Universal Coverage for Primary Healthcare through Social Marketing & Social Franchising route".

Objectives of the Conference:

1. To showcase successful Public Private Partnerships, Social Marketing & Social Franchising (SM&SF) models which have contributed to strengthening primary healthcare services delivery.

2. To sensitise policy makers and prospective private sector partners to position SM&SF as a strategy for achieving primary health and development targets by countries.

3. To provide a platform for key SM&SF stakeholders to identify best practices globally for its replication; map the support required from public & private sector and develop a framework for further action.

4. To encourage cross-learnings among SM&SF stakeholders.

The conference was well attended with over 400 participants from around the world representing a wide array of stakeholders ranging from the governments, Ministry of Health, Social Marketing academics and notable practitioners including social marketing organisations, social franchising organisations, INGO's, United Nations agencies, Civil society Organisations, academics, researchers and corporate representatives.

The three days witnessed a flurry of activities with 5 plenary and 4 satellite sessions where prominent practitioners, academics and key stakeholders engaged in purposeful discussions to demystify these strategies and added further to the growing body of evidence on the utility and effectiveness of SM&SF in India.


1. Formation of Regional Action Plans:

Regional action plans would be developed keeping in mind the diverse scenario of India with variations in health indicators, resources, socio-cultural factors, need of the people, presence of SM&SF organisations etc.

2. Comprehensive National Action Plans and Strategy:

Most experts often enunciated the need to consolidate the learnings for creating evidence-based intervention in a strategic manner. To address this, it was suggested to develop national strategy for SM&SF and national level action plan involving thought leaders and key stakeholders.

3. Community of Practice :Formation of an Association on SM & SF:

All stakeholders, during the conference, opined that there is a dire need to create a formalised collaborative platform in the form of a Southeast Asian Association of Social Marketing, including countries such as Bangladesh, Bhutan, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Indonesia, India, Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri-Lanka, Thailand & Timor-Leste. This association will develop a repository based on commonalities as well as variations in order to share evidence-based best practices. It would also facilitate a Think tank providing thought leadership in creating a transformative health impact.

From Commitments to Concrete Action - The progress made by HLFPPT is as follows:

1. Comprehensive National Action Plans and Strategy:

On 24th January, 2014, the conference steering committee met, where HLFPPT was unanimously chosen to lead the development of comprehensive cost strategy and operational plan for Social Marketing and Franchising with development partners such as BMGF, USAID, DFID and UNFPA as part of the core group.

2. Community of Practice: Indian Association of Social Marketing

HLFPPT has undertaken a study of the various models of communities of practice of social marketing and franchising and has developed a concept note on forming an Indian Association of Social Marketing.

3. Facilitating cross learning

Leveraging the width and depth of experience in Social Marketing and Franchising, a learning Centre was established within HLFPPT to develop content on Social Marketing enriched with the learnings from two decades of practice.

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