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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1903/12744

Title: WOMEN'S VOICES: INTEGRATING DIFFUSION OF INNOVATIONS THEORY WITH SOCIAL MARKETING TO UNDERSTAND WOMEN'S HEALTH
Authors: Sundstrom, Beth Lee
Advisors: Aldoory, Linda
Department/Program: Communication
Type: Dissertation
Sponsors: Digital Repository at the University of Maryland
University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
Subjects: Communication
Public health
Women's studies
Keywords: Campaigns
Diffusion of Innovations Theory
Health Communication
Reproductive Health
Social Marketing
Women's Health
Issue Date: 2012
Abstract: Women's health serves as a marker for societal health and wellness. Women champion access to health care services for their children and families. The mother-child dyad provides a unique view of the duality of women's reproductive health. Particularly in the time period following the birth of a child, the health of mother and baby remain inextricably linked. This study focused on biological mothers of newborns. The purpose of this study was to explore how biological mothers of newborns made meaning of health. A secondary purpose of this study was to explore how women made meaning of current social marketing campaigns targeting their health. The theoretical goal of this study was to elaborate conceptual opportunities for the integration of diffusion of innovations theory within a social marketing framework. Literature regarding social marketing, diffusion of innovations theory, and women's health contributed to this study. The literature review suggested the potential to apply diffusion of innovations theory to a social marketing framework in order to better understand women's health and the health of their families. A qualitative research methodology was used to collect and analyze data. Specifically, 44 in-depth interviews with mothers of newborns provided insight into how these women made meaning of their health. Analytical techniques from the grounded theory approach were used to analyze these data. A feminist research perspective situated this study as praxis-oriented audience research to uncover new mother's health needs within a social marketing framework. Themes emerged regarding social marketing, diffusion of innovations theory, and women's health. Findings suggested that these mothers of newborns embody and challenge the mother-child dyad in various ways, resist the biomedical paradigm, and envision new ways to interact in their social networks. This study contributes to the social marketing scholarly body of knowledge by developing the application of diffusion of innovations as a particularly relevant and useful theory. Results indicate that diffusion of innovations theory offers an audience segmentation opportunity based on innovativeness and adopter categories. Findings suggest opportunities to apply diffusion of innovations theory within a social marketing framework to better understand women's health and the health of their families.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1903/12744
Appears in Collections:UMD Theses and Dissertations
Communication Theses and Dissertations

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