Since 1989, DKT International’s core mission has been to provide safe and affordable options for family planning and HIV prevention through social marketing. Today, DKT designs and implements social marketing programs in 19 countries in Latin America, Africa, and Asia. DKT programs served over 21 million couples in 2013, using standard conversion factors for Couple Years of Protection (CYPs). This figure makes DKT the largest private provider of contraceptives and family planning services in the developing world.
Throughout the world, social marketing programs have been very successful in promoting family planning. In 2012, social marketing programs provided 65.5 million CYPs, approximately 25 percent of couples in the developing world using modern spacing methods. Today, social marketing annually provides over 600 million condoms, 76 million oral contraceptive pills, 16 million injectable contraceptives, and over 1.5 million IUDs.
The social marketing of reproductive health products and services has several unique advantages:
It is fast. Because social marketing relies to a great extent on existing commercial and health service delivery networks, it can be scaled up quickly, providing contraceptives to tens of thousands of outlets in just a year or two.
It also is non-patronizing. Social marketing contraceptives are not perceived as a “program” by consumers. Rather, they are seen as normal commercial goods that offer consumers a benefit at an affordable price.
Because they are purchased, they are likely to be used. As a result, the social marketing of contraceptives and family planning services is highly cost-effective.