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The effects of social marketing efforts in motivating unemployed adults' participation in skills training programmes in South Africa

Celestin Mayombe (Education and Human Rights in Diversity, Faculty of Education, North-West University, Mafikeng, South Africa)

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning

ISSN: 2042-3896

Article publication date: 7 December 2021

Issue publication date: 15 July 2022

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Abstract

Purpose

The concern in this article is that there is low interest in adult education and training (AET) programmes of the unemployed adults in developing countries. The purpose of the article is to determine the effects of social marketing efforts in motivating adult learners to acquire marketable skills for poverty reduction.

Design/methodology/approach

The study used the qualitative (semi-structured interviews) method for data collection from 12 adult learners and five managers of AET centres of South Africa. The qualitative method in the form of semi-structured interviews helped the researcher to present the data from the perspective of the centre managers and adult learners on how the AET centres used social marketing efforts in motivating to acquire and utilise skills in entrepreneurial ventures.

Findings

The findings reveal that the effects of social marketing efforts consisted of persuading adult learners to enrol for skills training programmes, to attract their engagement to acquire marketable skills and to form business groups or co-operatives as a means of transition from skills acquisition to entrepreneurial ventures. As elements of social marketing effort in the skills training delivery, the AET centres used teaching and learning approaches and motivated the adult learners to acquire skills.

Practical implications

From the social marketing perspective, the practical implication of the findings for the policy consists of demonstrating the importance of social marketing efforts in skills training programmes to reduce poverty amongst poor and unemployed adults. The findings demonstrate the need for coordinated campaign activities at AET centre regional levels to motivate the engagement of the unemployed adults; hence, they will become aware of the benefits of the skills training programmes to improve their lives.

Social implications

The lack of motivation is still the main barrier for participation in adult skills programmes, although there is significant progress made in many countries. In addition, social marketing efforts point to a need to promote, encourage and recognise participation from private sector for joint stakeholder cooperation.

Originality/value

This article is unique because it provides empirical findings on how to mitigate the barriers blocking adult participation in skills training programmes by using the social marketing efforts in motivating them to acquire marketable skills. The article contributes to the body of knowledge by determining the effects of the social marketing efforts in motivating adult learners to acquire marketable skills for poverty reduction. The efforts entail developing and implementing campaigns to motivate adult learners in their communities and stakeholder cooperation.

Keywords

Citation

Mayombe, C. (2022), "The effects of social marketing efforts in motivating unemployed adults' participation in skills training programmes in South Africa", Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, Vol. 12 No. 4, pp. 749-762. https://doi.org/10.1108/HESWBL-09-2021-0175

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited

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