Health marketing in an emerging market: the critical role of signaling theory in breast cancer awareness

Judith Fletcher-Brown, Vijay Pereira, Munyaradzi W. Nyadzayo

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    Abstract

    In India, breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed type of cancer among women in cities and urban areas, yet women seek medical care extremely late due to lack of awareness about self-examination. This study explores the health marketing literature via signaling theory, to uncover the unique social, economic, cultural and institutional challenges and opportunities faced by health marketers and consumers in breast cancer awareness (BCA) in an emerging economy – India. An interpretive-inductive method, alongside a grounded theory approach via focus groups with medical professionals and interviews with women is employed. Findings reveal complex challenges at national, state and community levels which impact negatively on the reputation of India’s health sector. Social marketing strategies could be leveraged to raise BCA via community health activists. Propositions are suggested and a conceptual framework is developed to assist health marketers to manage BCA in an emerging economy.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number0
    Pages (from-to)416-434
    Number of pages19
    JournalJournal of Business Research
    Volume86
    Early online date9 Jun 2017
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2018

    Keywords

    • Health marketing
    • Breast cancer awareness
    • Signaling theory
    • India
    • Emerging economy

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