Promotion of health and wellbeing through social media
Lifestyle and habits are adopted during childhood and youth. Teenagers are key holders to the choices of the family and friends and trend setters for younger children. Our goal is to promote health and wellbeing of teenagers and their families by developing new means for communicating with teenagers (14-16 yrs).
WOM is the oldest means of promotion or marketing: before the advent of the printing press, broadcast media and the internet, WOM was the only way to market your goods. According to a recent study 82% of the fastest-growing private companies in USA use WOM techniques.
“There is no greater loyalty than that of a customer who is willing to spend time to tell friends about you and share suggestions with you about how to improve your products,” says Jim Nail. “If you implement those suggestions and you tell your customers, ‘Hey, we listened to you,’ that generates incredible loyalty.”(Ferguson 2008)
Internet seems to be good way of reaching the target group: teenagers are already spending time in social communities. The big problem teenagers have named concerning Internet and online communities, is finding interesting content. Building a safe and interesting secondary socialization group for teenagers can be useful and provide teenagers a good place to learn independence.
An American survey it has recently revealed that behaviour of teenagers on internet and social media is chang-ing: blogging is decreasing among teenagers and young adults while it is at the same time rising among older adults. Also commenting each others’ blogs is decreasing. However, at the same time, a noticeable increase is recognised in the use of social media sites: 73% of wired American teenagers (2010) use these sites compared to 65% in 02/2008 and 55% in 11/2006. Facebook is the most popular site (Lenhart & al, 2010.)
Social media marketing are efforts used to create content that attracts attention and encourages customers to share it with their social networks, to spread messages from social network user to user. This is presumed to resonate well because it is coming from a trusted source, word-of-mouth from a friend, as opposed to the brand or company itself.
Social media is an important tool also for promoting health, as shows the initiative of the US Mayo Clinic example presented in Kaiser Health News (KHN) on July 28 2010. KHN is a nonprofit news organization “committed to in-depth coverage of health care policy and politics”: “The Mayo Clinic is opening a school of social media for health providers. The new "Center for Social Media… [will] train other health care organizations to use Twitter, YouTube and Facebook to connect patients and doctors. The new center will run workshops, offer consulting and host conferences." Mayo started podcasting in 2005 and has embraced social media as an extension of traditional word-of-mouth marketing (KHN 2010.)
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Research question: How to create a social media site that attracts teenagers (14-16yrs) ?