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Inspiring Behavior Change for Sustainable, Healthy,
and Equitable Communities

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The 11th Annual SPARKS

Conference 2023


The organizers of the 2023 Social Marketing SPARKS Conference are seeking proposals for presentations. 

After 2 years of virtual SPARKS, the Pacific Northwest Social Marketing Association is excited to welcome you back in person! SPARKS is a two-day event set for December 4-5 at the Museum of Flight in Seattle. Day 1 features over a dozen social marketing experts speaking on behavior change initiatives. While the first day will be hybrid with an online viewing option, we ask that all speakers attend in-person. Day 2 includes in-depth in-person training and speaker attendance is optional.

We are looking for enthusiastic presenters that can share ideas, innovations, stories, successes, and yes, failures in social marketing with a focus on issues, especially those being addressed in the Pacific Northwest. What have you done that has pushed the envelope to change behavior for social good? What is the next horizon in social marketing? What new ideas or innovations would you like to share with other social marketers? Did you try something and fail spectacularly? We can learn a lot from missteps and failures too.

We encourage applicants to reach out to for assistance in crafting presentation proposals!

What's in it for you?

Successful social marketing strategies and programs can often have a greater return on investment than other outreach, engagement, and marketing methods. Sharing your story and hearing from others in the social marketing field at SPARKS can help bolster that investment and impact. Participation at SPARKS can be used to amplify the work you do within your organizations to ignite change in the broader community. In addition, SPARKS speakers receive the following benefits: 

        • Free SPARKS conference registration. 
        • Designated speaker support from the PNSMA Board and one-on-one presentation development support sessions.  
        • Custom digital graphics to promote your participation through PNSMA social media channels and our conference website. 

Presentation Guidance

    Ideas for proposals may include (but are not limited to): 

          • Social marketing initiatives to improve health, safety, injury prevention, transportation, the environment, and communities. 
          • Work to advance racial equity and inclusion used in social marketing approaches. 
          • Community engagement in co-creation of social marketing strategies.  
          • Innovations or accomplishments in social marketing, such as advanced theory in social marketing (e.g., cognitive and social psychology), best practices, evaluation.  

    We’re most excited about presentations that:  

          • Describe innovative ways that you used or identified others using social marketing techniques to solve a specific problem or change a specific behavior.
          • Tell a story that centers on a key insight or theme. Strive to share that “ah-ha!” moment. 
          • Highlight tangible results. Every presentation should include something tangible that changed as a result of your project. This can include actual evaluation results, or a point-in-time change that occurred because of a specific step in the social marketing process. Use real-world examples. 
          • Emphasize efforts that lead to systemic change. Focus on behavior change related to public health, injury prevention, environmental protection, inclusive and equitable community engagement OR advanced theory in behavior change. 
          • Are captivating and engaging for the audience. Presentations should be TED/TEDx styled talks.  They should be entertaining as well as informative. This is not your standard conference presentation! 

    Please avoid presentations that: 

          • Present detailed case studies. 
          • Promote a business, organization, product, or service. 
          • Use a lot of slides with a lot of text. 
          • Focus on social media, advertising, or general outreach (remember, social marketing is about behavior change for good). 

    Presentations will be between 13 and 15 minutes long, with each followed by an additional 5 minutes for audience questions. Presentation slides are not needed, but slides with compelling visuals and photos to help tell your story are welcomed. We welcome your creative strategies to make your virtual presentation engaging and meaningful for our conference attendees. 

    NOTE: If you have presented in the past and would like to be considered as a speaker for this year, you are welcome to pitch your presentation so long as it is a new topic. In order to keep the agenda fresh, people who presented in 2022 are not eligible to present at this year’s conference.  

      Ready to tell your story?

      Complete our SPARKS 2023 Call for Speakers form here. Proposal responses should include: 

            • Speaker contact information including name, title, organization, email address, daytime phone, and mailing address. 
            • The title of your presentation. 
            • A presentation abstract of no more than 200 words, including the specific step(s) in the social marketing process that your presentation will address: 
            • Initial Planning 
            • Formative Research 
            • Strategy Formation 
            • Program Development 
            • Program Implementation 
            • Tracking and Evaluation 
            • A one-sentence statement describing the key point or theme of your presentation – your key insight or “ah-ha” moment. 


      Please submit your proposal by Friday, September 8th, 2023.

      Selected speakers will be notified by late September 2023. 

      Organized by the Pacific Northwest Social Marketing Association

      PNSMA is an organization made up of members of the social marketing community across the Pacific Northwest. Its purpose is to promote the general advancement of the practice and industry of social marketing, advance the interests of social marketing professionals, facilitate training, education and research, provide a forum for exchange of information related to the practice, and promote public understanding and education about social marketing.

      Questions? Email

      Pacific Northwest Social Marketing Association (PNSMA)

      1011 Western Avenue, Suite 702

      Seattle, WA  98104

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