Integrating Gender into Social and Behavior Change Communication

STEP 7: Integrate Gender into Program Positioning and Message Strategy

The positioning statement will incorporate the information from previous steps and synthesize this information to form a complete picture of your SBCC strategy or marketing plan. Positioning is the identity you want your SBCC program to have. It presents the strategic approach in a way that is persuasive and appealing and memorable to the intended audience. In the context of strategic design, positioning means presenting a challenge, service or product so that it stands out. It also provides direction and shapes the development of messages. It is the consistent voice that runs throughout and reinforces activities for a cumulative effect.

With a well-thought-out positioning statement and message strategy, programs can better develop messages that consider the gender dynamics and determinants discovered during the analysis phase. As a first step, be sure your positioning does not reinforce negative gender norms, traditions and practices. For example, if you position male involvement in family planning campaign around “strong men,” this may reinforce gender norms about masculinity and male dominance. Ideally, your positioning will be gender transformative, which will help shape the choice of appropriate strategic approaches and messages that transform gender-related norms, attitudes and behaviors towards a healthier society.



Activity 7.1: Deciding How to Position Your Program

This activity will guide you in looking at your programmatic perspective versus the audience perspective and how best to position your program to find the sweet spot. The activity will help you consider if you should postion it as a program for women, men, health or gender.  


Activity 7.2: Designing the Right Messages

This activity will guide you in designing a message strategy that will move your audience from their current behaviors to the desired behaviors. The activity will examine the potential consequences of how messages are phrased and the resulting changes in behavior. 

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