The Heart Truth                                                                                                           ...
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The Heart Truth®: Using Social Media to Reach and Motivate Women to Address Risk Factors for Heart Disease

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Objective:
To educate women about heart disease and prompt action against key risk factors by empowering women to spread The Heart Truth® via social media tools.

Background:
The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) launched a national social marketing campaign—The Heart Truth®—in 2002 to increase women’s awareness of their #1 killer and prompt them to take action to reduce their risk.

In 2007, The Heart Truth® campaign began to utilize social media to disseminate messages, foster online community,
and promote events and resources to reach and motivate women to lower their personal risk for heart disease. Each year, social media efforts have been expanded to include new channels and tactics in support of the NHLBI campaign and key events such as National Wear Red Day® and the Red Dress Collection Fashion Show.

Published in: Health & Medicine, Business
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The Heart Truth®: Using Social Media to Reach and Motivate Women to Address Risk Factors for Heart Disease

  1. 1. The Heart Truth ® Using Social Media to Reach and Motivate Women to Address Risk Factors for Heart Disease Presented by Ann Taubenheim, Ph.D1; Dana Allen-Greil; Megan Yarmuth; Jennifer Wayman, MHS2; Sarah Temple3Background Objectives American Heart Month Activities (February 2011) With an impact of many millions of additional audience impressions through social media, the campaign team concluded that these Content and Experience Promotion To educate women about heart disease and prompt action against channels provide an effective means of further extending the reachThe National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute • Facebook page for campaign fans to talk openly about heart key risk factors by empowering women to spread The Heart Truth® of The Heart Truth®.(NHLBI) launched a national social marketing disease and gain knowledge via social media tools. • Twitter platform to give consumers actionable support to be The Conclusionscampaign—The Heart Truth —in 2002 to increase ® heart healthywomen’s awareness of their #1 killer and prompt Audience Trends • Content for consumer use and amplification, including photos on Flickr and videos on YouTube NHLBI continues to lead the nation in a landmark heart healththem to take action to reduce their risk. The primary audience for The Heart Truth® is women ages 40-60; awareness movement that is being embraced by millions, and its • Web-based PSA banners that link to the campaign Web site secondary audiences include women ages 25-39 and women over Red Dress symbol has become a widely recognized health symbolIn 2007, The Heart Truth® campaign began to • hareable widgets and badges to support taking action on S age 60. Research on Internet use in America shows that: across the country. The social media strategy deployed in support ofutilize social media to disseminate messages, foster online community, personal heart health • 86% of online women pursue health information on the Web 4 The Heart Truth® campaign represents one component of a national,and promote events and resources to reach and motivate women to Community Activation • Looking for health information is the third most popular online multi-faceted communications initiative. • Facebook group for Champions (women trained to incorporatelower their personal risk for heart disease. Each year, social media pursuit, following email and using a search engine5 • more than 5 billion media impressions; The Heart Truth® messages and materials into their existing • 69% of online women are users of social networking sites • more than 500 community-based programs such as galas,efforts have been expanded to include new channels and tactics in community health outreach activities), where they can share (compared with 60% of online men) screenings, and seminars; best practices in local social marketingsupport of the NHLBI campaign and key events such as National Wear • Women are more active in their use of social networking sites, • The Heart Truth® and Red Dress on more than 9.5 billion • Announcements of community success stories on campaignRed Day® and the Red Dress Collection Fashion Show. with almost half of female Internet users using social networking product packages, including Diet Coke and Cheerios; and online platforms sites on a typical day (compared with 38% of male users)6 • Cross-promotion with corporate and community partners to • heart health programming grants to communities awarded 29 • Social networking site use among users age 65 and older extend campaign messaging into their online communities by The Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH). grew 150% between 2009 and 2011 (from 13% in to 33%). • Distribution of campaign-developed, science-based materials During this same time period, use by 50-64 year-old internet Research studies have found that: through social media platforms to equip individuals to hold their users doubled (from 25% to 51%).7 • 54% of women identified heart disease as their leading cause own heart truth events locally of death in 2010, up from 30% in 1997.8 In light of these trends, The Heart Truth® devised a social media Influencer Engagement • Those who know that heart disease is the leading cause of death strategy to engage women online and provide the necessary • Outreach to leading women’s health, lifestyle and fashion/ in women were 35% more likely to be physically active and 47% tools for spreading campaign messages. entertainment-focused bloggers were more likely to report weight loss compared to those who • Celebrity and designer engagement through their personal were less aware.9 Methods • blogs, Twitter, and Facebook accounts Relationship maintenance online and offline with influencers • 58% of U.S. adult women recognized the Red Dress as the national symbol for women and heart disease awareness in 2010.10 Social Media Strategic Framework involved with the campaign, such as Founding Ambassador • Women who reported recently seeing or hearing about the Red First Lady Laura Bush Dress or The Heart Truth® campaign were substantially more likely The Heart Truth® uses a three-pronged approach to social media: than other women to take at least one risk-reduction as a result.11 influencer engagement; content and experience promotion; and community activation. Results Effective application of social media supports and extends each component of the overall campaign, helping to increase awareness Outreach efforts and word-of-mouth during through March 2011 about heart disease, engaging women with information about risk resulted in: factors, and promoting actions that women can take to reduce their risk. Content and Influencer Experience Community • more than 14,000 social media mentions Lessons Learned: Social Media for Social Marketing Engagement Promotion Activation • estimated 54 million unique monthly visitors to blog posts an Over the course of several years, the campaign has gleaned key Creating content that Engaging the right Driving communities generated through blogger outreach motivates women to influencers to reach our to join The Heart Truth® insights into the effective use of social media for raising awareness take action to protect target audience and movement and enlist • 75% increase in Facebook fans and more than 800 interactions their heart health. motivate them to act others to do the same. and prompting action: • 42% increase in Twitter fans • Align social media programs with your initiative’s broader • increase in Web site traffic (hearttruth.gov) 8% strategy to ensure that they have a meaningful impact on the fundamental attitude and/or behavior you wish to influence. • Don’t talk to your audiences online. Talk with them. Optimize content by listening. Social Media Evolution • Develop a constant stream of compelling digital content, making sure your messages are shareable. 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 • Make sure content is simple, compelling, transparent, and authentic. Be mindful of the pace at which users are consuming • enerate online G • romote National Wear P • reate Community C • aunch Twitter L • evelop custom “Get D • aunch Pinterest L content on the Web. buzz through Red Day® with widgets Action Web Page with account and hold Involved” Facebook tab channel with photos of blogger outreach embeddable badges first Twitter Party heart-healthy recipes • hare photos with S • ngage strategic E • dvertise with A Flickr account • tream Fashion S partners (corporate, • o-lead Twitter chat C online banners Show live celebrity) to spread with influential partners • Launch Facebook page the word through their • hare video S® The Heart Truth, its logo and The Red Dress are registered trademarks of HHS. social networks® National Wear Red Day is a registered trademark of HHS and AHA. on YouTube 8 M osca, L. et al. (2010). “Twelve-Year Follow-Up of American Women’s Awareness of Cardiovascular Disease Risk and Barrier to Heart Health.” Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes, 3:120-127. 5 P ew Research Center’s Internet American Life Project (2011). “Health Topics.” http://circoutcomes.ahajournals.org/content/3/2/120.full1 National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute http://www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2011/HealthTopics/Part-2/Women.aspx2 Ogilvy Washington 9 M osca, L. et al. (2010). “Twelve-Year Follow-Up of American Women’s Awareness of Cardiovascular 6 P ew Research Center’s Internet American Life Project (2011). “65% of online adults us social networking sites.” Disease Risk and Barrier to Heart Health.” Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes, 3:120-127.3 PATH, formerly of Ogilvy Washington http://www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2011/Social-Networking-Sites/Report/Part-2.aspx 10 The Heart Truth partner-funded survey, March/April 2010.4 P ew Research Center’s Internet American Life Project (2011). “Health Topics.” 7 P ew Research Center’s Internet American Life Project (2011). “65% of online adults us social networking sites.” http://www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2011/HealthTopics/Part-2/Women.aspx http://www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2011/Social-Networking-Sites/Report/Part-2.aspx 11 The Heart Truth partner-funded survey, March/April 2010.

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