Numerous policies and programs have attempted to address barriers to energy efficient behaviour in low-income people (NCOSS, 2010). Low-income earners are a key vulnerable group in society with often limited resources leading to diminished lifestyles in health and well-being (Hampson, et al 2009) and large energy bills can often contribute further to their burden. Past approaches to energy saving behaviour are typically informational (Fischer, 2008) with this approach criticised as less effective. There has been calls for different behavioural approaches to encouraging energy saving behaviour (Hargreaves, et al. 2010) that go beyond information and awareness. As a behaviour focused discipline that goes beyond awareness and education, social marketing is well-placed to address the deficits of past energy efficiency programs. Social marketers are now beginning to investigate the use of digital tools such as mobile phones and games (Schuster, et al 2013; Mulcahy, et al 2015a) as means of changing behaviours such as energy efficiency. . However, whilst research exists in the use of technology for social marketing behaviours (e.g. Schuster, et al 2013; Mulcahy, et al 2015a) there is little evidence to demonstrate the impact of such tools on behaviour change. With more agencies and governments seeking to use digital tools in social marketing, there is need to create an evidence-base of what works and why. This study seeks to address this problem by investigating the effect of a theory-driven digital energy efficiency social marketing program for low-income earners.
2016 International Social Marketing Conference (ISMC): Societal Wellbeing, Wollongong, Australia 26-27 September 2016
Proceedings of the 2016 International Social Marketing Conference / pp. In press