Review: Ebola on Instagram and Twitter: How health organizations address the health crisis in their social media engagement

Home/Review: Ebola on Instagram and Twitter: How health organizations address the health crisis in their social media engagement

Review: Ebola on Instagram and Twitter: How health organizations address the health crisis in their social media engagement

Review: Ebola on Instagram and Twitter: How health organizations address the health crisis in their social media engagement

This research article highlights that social media messaging (particularly on Instagram) may be most effective when known health organizations use solution-based messaging, incorporate visual imagery, and acknowledge public fears and concerns.

By examining Ebola-related social media posts on Twitter and Instagram from the World Health Organization, the Centers for Disease and Control, and Doctors without Borders, researchers determined that Instagram, in particular, is a useful platform for establishing meaningful, interactive communication with the public during global health crises. Social media messaging is most effective when strategic health risk communication principles are followed to move away from top-down communication towards more meaningful, interactive dialogue. This helps connect health care providers and organizations with the public. Specifically, it is important to build a strong social media presence with frequent, consistent, interactive communication; counterbalance negative messages with a greater number of positive messages; utilize visuals for a longer-lasting effect; and disseminate solution-based messages.

|2020-05-08T11:56:02-04:00May 8th, 2020|COVID-19 Literature|0 Comments

About the Author: Maria Brann

Maria Brann
Dr. Maria Brann, PhD, MPH, is a professor in the Department of Communication Studies in the School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI and affiliate faculty with the Injury Control Research Center at West Virginia University. She explores the integration of health, interpersonal, and gender communication. Her translational focus and mixed methods approach are woven throughout her health vulnerabilities research, which advocates for more effective communication to improve people’s health and safety. Her primary research interests focus on the study of women’s and ethical issues in health communication contexts and promotion of healthy lifestyle behaviors to improve personal and public health and safety. She researches communication at both the micro and macro levels and studies how communication influences relationships among individuals and with the social world.

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