BackgroundSocial marketing is an important tool in the delivery ofhealthcare services. For any healthcare programme orproject to be successful, community/consumer participationis required. The four principles of social marketing can guidepolicymakers and healthcare providers to successfully planand implement health programmes.AimTo review the existing literature in order to project thebenefits of social marketing in healthcare.MethodA search of periodical literature by the author involvingsocial marketing and marketing concepts in health wascarried out. Items were identified initially through healthorientedindexing services such as Medline, Health STARand Cinahl, using the identifiers “social marketing“ and“marketing in health”. An extensive search was also carriedout on educational database ERIC.ResultsA literature review of various studies on social marketingindicated that the selection of the right product (accordingto the community need) at the right place, with the rightstrategy for promotion and at the right price yields goodresults. However, along with technical sustainability(product, price, promotion and place), financialsustainability, institutional sustainability and marketsustainability are conducive factors for the success of socialmarketing.ConclusionThe purpose of this literature review was to ascertain thelikely effectiveness of social marketing principles andapproaches and behaviour change communication towardshealth promotion.It is important for all healthcare workers to understand andrespond to the public’s desires and needs and routinely useconsumer research to determine how best to help thepublic to solve problems and realise aspirations. Socialmarketing can optimise public health by facilitatingrelationship-building with consumers and making their liveshealthier.