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Social marketing often applies commercial marketing approaches to programs intended to improve the social welfare by changing individuals’ beliefs and behaviors. We present Mental Modeling, a commercial approach to market research and audience segmentation that has not previously been applied in a social marketing context. We discuss the application of this methodology within an organization focusing on changing employers’ perceptions and behaviors around hiring and retaining individuals with disabilities. First, we describe approaches to social marketing broadly and present the Mental Modeling methodology. We then discuss interpretation and application of the model to the development of an improved, data-driven approach to social marketing for our target audience


Suggested Citation:

Malzer, V., & von Schrader, S. (2014). Mental modeling: A Qualitative method for mapping audience behaviors and designing social marketing initiatives. Ithaca, NY: Employment and Disability Institute

Mental_Modeling_2014.htm (837 kB)
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MentalModel_Exhibit_1.08.pdf (272 kB)
EXHIBIT - The Mental Model