'Appreciate A Mate': Helping others to feel good about themselves

Safe and Well Online: A report on the development and evaluation of a positive messaging social marketing campaign for young people

Social marketing seeks to develop and integrate marketing concepts with other approaches to influence behaviours that benefit individuals and communities for the greater social good. As a result, there is much interest in the role of online campaigns in promoting safety and wellbeing amongst young people.

The Safe and Well Online project brought together researchers, digital strategists, young people, creative agencies and industry partners to specifically examine how online social marketing-styled campaigns could address attitudes and behaviours which could compromise young people’s safety and cause harm.

Three major components comprise the Safe and Well Online project: 1) A participatory design (PD) process involving young people and sector partners (UWS) for; 2) campaign development (Zuni & Digital Arts Network); and 3) a cohort study (University of South Australia) to evaluate campaign effectiveness and attitude and behaviour change. This report extends the findings and conclusions of the Year One Pilot Study ‘Keep it Tame’ (Spears et.al, 2015), and details the development and evaluation of the second of four Safe and Well Online Campaigns—’Appreciate A Mate’: Helping others feel good about themselves.

Developing a campaign and determining the efficacy of that campaign to promote positive body image and respect for self and others presented many challenges and opportunities. In building on the pilot study findings from ‘Keep it Tame’ (Spears, et.al. 2015), and maintaining consistency with the research aims, a significant contribution of the Safe and Well Online project has been to extend and develop innovative ways to:

  1. Co-design online social marketing campaigns with young people.
  2. Gather reliable and valid data via both traditional avenues and passive data collection methods.
  3. Map engagement with web-based creative campaigns at the individual participant level.
  4. Test extant models related to attitude and behaviour change in online environments.
  5. Determine effective, ethical sampling/recruitment strategies for minors with informed consent in online studies.

Findings confirm that there is great potential for both supporting safe behaviours and encouraging positive affirmations using an online social marketing approach, and for the theoretical underpinning employed thus far—the application of the Model of Goal Directed Behaviour in online settings. From this model, there are clear indicators for determining where best to place interventions in order to achieve optimal behaviour change.


Dr Barbara Spears
Dr Carmel Taddeo
Dr Alan Barnes
Dr Philippa Collin
Dr Teresa Swist
Professor Judy Drennan
Dr Margaret Scrimgeour
Mark Razzell

Download the report
  • 'Appreciate A Mate': Helping others to feel good about themselves
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