Women’s Health Society had the pleasure of presenting part of its multimedia educational program at this year’s 35th Annual Research and Education Forum hosted by the University of Puerto Rico’s Medical Sciences Campus. As part of the forum Diana Soto De Jesús, new media consultant for WHS presented the poster:
Women’s Health Society’s HPV Multimedia Educational Program: Doing health education through Social Media.
Below you can see the abstract and pictures of the activity. The poster provoked a lot of positive interest and feedback for its innovation and success in approaching health education using new technologies and social media marketing strategies.
Background & Objectives: Social Media is an ever more present part of contemporary life. Puerto Rico’s low vaccination rates against Human Papiloma Virus (which causes cervical cancer) is an urgent health issue. Thus Women’s Health Society (a nonprofit) created a multimedia educational program where social media, in particular Facebook has proven key in spreading awareness on HPV. Our objectives are 1) to raise awareness on HPV, its repercussions and prevention alternatives 2) to use social media metrics to measure who we reach and how they engage with the educational content so that ever more effective educational efforts can be proposed in the future. Methods: Create a content network of attractive, easily understandable yet scientifically accurate multimedia web content. Actively and effectively promote this content through a social media platform (in our case Facebook) relevant to the target audience (women in Puerto Rico). Craft campaigns to take key content (for example our #HPVMyths social media campaign) to target audiences. Engage people in conversation, encourage questions and respond promptly. Constantly analyze metrics and modify strategy as need be. Results: In just 4 months Women’s Health Society Facebook Page has gotten 3,057 Fans. These are not “ghost fans“ but people that constantly engage with the educational content we post (current average reach of our page: 50,700 people). Furthermore, the educational work is directly impacting people’s lives: people are writing to thank us for clearing up their doubts in times of uncertainty. Conclusion: Social Media can serve as an effective channel of communication for health education efforts. It can be used to reach new publics in a targeted manner according to the populations that are more in need or more at risk. It is important to remember that social media has its own methods required for success. Acknowledgments: This effort is funded in part by MERCk’s 2014 Grant. We have also received support from VocesPR and VidaMiaTV.