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PreventionAustralian Drug Foundation • Alcohol & Drug information ISSN 1832-6013June 201311.6 million users630,000 users1.1 million users11 million users160,000 users2.2 million users 2.8 million usersLeveragingsocial mediaThe social media prescription for better healthHow can health promoters use social media tochange Australia’s drinking culture?By Dr Nicholas Carah and Michelle ShaulUniversity of Queensland


Leveragingsocial mediaKey messagesKey message 1: Social mediahas become integral to identity,relationships and lifestyles• Social media allows people toconstruct identities through thestories they tell about themselves andtheir everyday practices.• A widespread culture of celebrityand self-branding has developedalongside rapid growth in the use ofsocial media 1 .• Social media is reaching a diverseaudience, including highly mobile,connected individuals, who maynot necessarily engage throughtraditional channels.• Health promoters must work bothalongside and against the healthcompromisingpractices frequentlypromoted through social media.Key message 2: Social mediaoccupies a unique space, whichthrives on collaboration• Social media relies on theparticipation of ordinary people in thecreation and circulation of messages.• Relatively unconstrained bytraditional social and structuralbarriers, social media challenges thedomain of public authority.• Social media blurs the boundariesbetween public and private, andbetween user-generated material andbrand promotion.• On social media, organisations usedto controlling their message mustgive way to a more collaborative,interactive approach. Attention andengagement must be earned andconversations must be managed.Key message 3: Social mediarepresents a powerful newmarketing tool• Social media allows marketersto watch and respond to theirtarget audience (using socialmedia analytics).• Audience participation in the creationand circulation of messages allowsbrands to become more meaningfullyintegrated into user conversations,identities and lifestyles.• Alcohol marketers in particularhave successfully collaboratedwith social media users, who areincidentally promoting alcohol anddrinking (through competitions,interactive games, social eventsand image sharing).• The Australian Medical Association 2recognises the ‘online alcoholmarketplace’ as an importantnew field for public health. 3Key message 4: Health promotersmust leverage social media tobroadcast their message• Health promoters, particularly thosein the AOD sector, can learn lessonsfrom their commercial counterpartsto engage more collaboratively withtheir audience.• User data can be used toovercome competitive barriersand seamlessly integrate healthpromotion into daily lives (e.g. denormalisealcohol consumption).• Multimedia campaigns such as‘febfast’ and ‘Dry July’ demonstratethe potential of health promotionstrategies to effect positive change indrinking behaviour and practices.The merits ofsocial mediaAustralian Internet users:65% are on social media56% use it several times a week45% use it every dayAustralian social media users:67% use a smartphone to accesssocial media, and use of social mediaoutside the home continues to grow95% are on Facebook, and they login 24 times per week on average37% check social media first thingin the morning 4Front cover statistics: Social Media News, March 201302Alcohol anddrug information


IntroductionCommunication technologies have brought sweepingchanges to contemporary society and the way we interact.Social media in particular is enjoying unprecedentedpopularity among Australian consumers, who activelyengage with it on a regular basis.Quick to capitalise on this is the alcohol industry, whoseinnovative use of social media presents a challenge to healthpromoters. Fortunately social media also offers health promotersmany opportunities to target audiences with more precision andconnect with them more convincingly.Through a growing selection of social media platforms, healthpromoters have a chance to collaborate with their audiences asthey interact with their networks, upload images, ‘like’ and sharestories, express personal sentiments and ‘check in’ at variousgeographic locations.The scale and velocity of socialmedia make it an essential toolfor health promotion.Publication focusThis publication primarily focuses onresearch and case studies relating to healthpromotion targeted at alcohol consumptionby young people, as most resources havebeen invested in this area. This is not to saysocial media doesn’t provide opportunitiesto target other audiences. It also couldprovide opportunities for harm reductionrelated to illegal drugs. However, thediscussion of illicit drugs through socialmedia is more complex. When someoneengages with content on most social mediaplatforms it is visible to their peers. Thereare therefore cultural, privacy and legalimpediments to using public forms ofengagement to discuss illegal drugs.Get your ePub and eMag version of this issueof Prevention Research including links toonline resources. druginfo.adf.org.auHow this publication can helpFeaturing a selection of case studies fromboth the alcohol and health promotionsectors, this publication explores theopportunities presented by social media andculminates in a step-by-step guide for usingthese new platforms in health promotion.Social media intelligence gained through conversations onTwitter and networking sites like Facebook can provide valuableinformation about how an organisation is regarded and howit can better communicate with its market. Just as important isthe opportunity to observe how target audiences are alreadycommunicating with each other.By engaging with the practices of social media users, andunderstanding the values, identities and cultural practices of theirnetworks, organisations can learn how to create targeted contentand engage more proactively with their market.The imperative, particularly for health promoters, is to keep upwith the competition.This publication also explores how the consumption of alcoholis increasingly captured on social media. Drinking practices,for example, are regularly broadcast via image uploads, statusupdates, ‘tags’ and ‘check-ins’ at social events and venues. Thealcohol industry has leveraged these practices and its top10 brands have each recruited more than 100,000 people totheir respective Australian Facebook pages. Alcohol brands(and consumption) are subsequently incorporated into onlineconversations and thereby integrated into daily routines.While this normalisation of drinking practices challenges healthpromotion principles, there are some useful lessons to be learned.Foremost are the opportunities that social media providesfor collaborative and credible audience engagement. Unliketraditional media channels, social media platforms allow users tomanipulate the message, play with it, contribute their own viewand circulate it to new audiences. While this suggests that yourorganisation has less control over how its message is developedand circulated, you do have an opportunity to monitor andrespond to communication in real time. Tracking, managing andresponding to the conversation is therefore just as important asthe generation and distribution of initial content.Health promoters who understand the key messages outlined inthis publication can use social media to target communication,amplify organisation and campaign messages and monitor thesuccess of their reach.PreventionResearch03


Successful organisations use socialmedia to amplify and circulate messages,facilitate discussions and conversations,and engage regularly with users.What is it?Social media encompasses a variety ofonline communication platforms, whichallow users to create and circulate content.Each social media platform is distinct interms of the audiences and social groups itattracts, the types of content creation andcirculation it supports, and the interactionit enables between users. (See Appendix A)What makesit different?Successful organisations use social media to amplify andcirculate messages, facilitate discussions and conversations, andengage regularly with users. To do this they must understandthe characteristics that distinguish social media from traditionalcommunication channels.1. The creation and circulation of contentSocial media involves collaboration, which supports the productionand sharing of content, and the management of conversations.Organisations must be mindful that users will add to and adaptcontent, as well as create their own 5 . Therefore:• Understand that your organisation’s use of social media is partlydetermined by how users choose to engage with you. While youmay have one particular view of your strategy and presence onsocial media, users might want to engage with you in a differentway. This poses both opportunities and challenges.• Consider how your organisation’s social media activity is relatedto your larger online presence. Social media can be usedfor distributing content and directing traffic to other onlineresources. Search engine optimisation should also be consideredto direct potential audiences to particular search engines, socialmedia communities and other online resources.Organisations used to controlling their messages need to developstrategies for managing multiple voices, developing conversationsand contributing to communities.2. The construction of identityBased on interactions that are largely peer-to-peer 6 , social mediatends to be interlinked with cultural identities, social practicesand lifestyles. Online personal profiles serve as a manicuredform of self-expression. They are a public and often idealisticrepresentation of ourselves 7 .Interaction with organisations usually depends on the user’swillingness to visibly associate with that organisation orbrand. When a user comments, ‘likes’ or shares content froman organisation, that content is incorporated into the user’spersonal profile. The user’s perspective or interpretation of themessage is subsequently adopted by his/her peers, which meansthat messages will mutate as they travel through communitiesand conversations.Telling stories: People use social media to tell a story aboutthemselves. Online interactions facilitate constructions of socialworlds (our preferences, interests and values). Depictions of alcoholconsumption and drinking culture are therefore implicit in theconstruction of social identities on social media 8, 9, 10 . For example,researchers recently identified teenagers in New Zealand whopresent themselves ‘as able to consume significant amounts ofalcohol’ and ‘wish to see themselves as ‘drunks’ or be seen bytheir peers as having a connection with specific alcohol brands’ 8 .By sharing images of their drinking activities, these young peopleassociate themselves with (and consolidate identities around)alcohol consumption.Adapting messages: Many social media users adapt content tosuit constructed representations of themselves and their socialworld 11 . They modify the messages of alcohol brands and healthpromoters to reinforce their online identity. Mass media campaigns,such as the National Binge Drinking Campaign (‘Don’t turn a nightout into a nightmare’), contrast starkly with social narratives builton anticipation and enjoyment, which tend to have a larger uptakeamong social media networks. Links identified between bingedrinking, young women and their Facebook activities includeanticipatory posts (leading up to their night out), live mobileupdates, uploading of images while out drinking, and sharing ofphoto albums in the days that follow 12 . In these cases, social mediais used to amplify social narratives and manipulate the messagesthat challenge them. The National Binge Drinking Campaign, forexample, triggered spoof activities including drinking games anda Facebook page entitled ‘Don’t turn a night out into a night in’. Inother words, the audience cunningly reappropriated the campaigninto a promotion of excessive consumption.Amplifying cultural practices: Social media is used, bothintentionally and unwittingly, as a means to amplify culturalpractices. Alcohol and hospitality brands have capitalised on thiswith more ingenuity than most, engaging photographers to actas ‘paparazzi and take pictures of the partiers’ 13 . Images can beuploaded to social media sites where they are ‘liked’, tagged andmade subject to comment by those in the photos, their friends andthe broader public. Young people in particular are highly sensitisedto competitive self-branding and enjoy being photographed or‘seen’ at popular venues with high-profile people. Brands andvenues have learned to exploit these self-promotional practices 13 .04Alcohol anddrug information


3. The mobile, visual and locationalMobile: Social media goes where we go. Many people accesssocial media via their smart phones, so it pays to consider theconstant movement of users when communicating throughsocial media platforms.Visual: Social media interaction is often facilitated by images,which engage users more emotionally than text, prominentlyfeaturing in news feeds and other content streams. Generallyspeaking, it is often an image that triggers the interactionfrom which a more textual form of communication follows.YouTube and Instagram are dedicated to visual content, whileplatforms like Facebook attribute much of their growth to theproliferation of image and video sharing. In recognition of this,organisations should be considering the visual scope of thesocial media platforms they have selected and the capacity oftheir communications to be driven by visual content.Locational: Location is increasingly important to the way socialmedia works, with platforms managing content distributionbased on the locations of their users. Geo-tags and ‘checkins’also feed into identity construction, allowing users tocommunicate who they are by broadcasting where they are.These practices enable associations to be made betweenpeople and their whereabouts. Knowing the ‘type’ of personwho attends a particular place or event helps an organisationto develop targeted communications, customised to specificsocial groups. Some organisations, for example, build themedenvironments at social events where they interact withaudiences by encouraging attendees to check in, upload photosor send messages about their experience.Contextual engagement: Many commercial organisationsbegin their content generation by building branded, ‘real life’social spaces in which audiences can comfortably engage. Theseinclude bars, lounges and other creative and social activitiescomplete with artists, DJs and bands 14 . Alcohol brands havebeen particularly successful at this, building installations atmusic, sporting, leisure and nightlife events, and employingpromotional staff to record images and videos for upload tosocial media. Consumers are encouraged to ‘check in’ at the baronline, upload their own images, and tag, ‘like’ and commentaccordingly. The brand becomes part of the memories createdaround that event, and participants mediate those memoriesin congruence with their social identities online. Shared storiesassociated with the event then become promotion for the brand,which thereby enhances its credibility and collaborative appeal....article continued page 6CASE STUDY 1: Wild Turkey Australia ‘Bird Up’ campaignLesson: Linking withcultural identities and practicesCampari Australia’s campaign for Wild Turkey bourbon urgedmen to ‘bird up’ (step up) and take on difficult challenges,as a way of ‘saluting’ particular types of masculinity that aredesirable, such as doing DIY. In addition to digital, outdoor andpoint-of-sale activity, the campaign was delivered on Facebookvia a meme that users could adapt and then circulate to theirfriends. A meme is a cultural concept (or imitation) that spreadsfrom person-to-person via the Internet.Inviting Facebook users to ‘like’, share and comment on thepost, Campari Australia was able to promote and circulatebranded content through the news feeds of individuals. Thecampaign was created so that users would be encouragedto add their own meaning to the meme, which they havedone through the comments. Users could receive the memethrough a friend sharing it with them or through Camparipaying for the post to appear in their newsfeed. Campari wasable to target advertised posts to people whose friends had‘liked’ or commented on the post, presenting the advertisingas endorsed by the audience’s friends.Example of Wild Turkey advertising that appeared in aFacebook user’s newsfeed. The company targeted this personbecause two of his friends ‘like’ the post.Identifying social media account names andprofile images have been changed in all casestudies in this publication.PreventionResearch05


What makes it different? continuedCASE STUDY 2: Vans installation at Big Day OutLesson: Consumer brand collaboration (an example of contextual engagement)One successful campaign using social media toamplify a real life brand promotion was the themedinstallation developed by casual footwear brand,Vans, at the popular summer music festival, BigDay Out. Attendees were invited to customisetheir sneakers (using art supplies) and share theirexperience via images uploaded to Facebookand Instagram. The activity capitalised on thecreativity of festivalgoers, leveraged their socialmedia networks and connected the brand withthe cultural stories and memories of the festival.The brand knew its audience, engaged with it in areal social space, drew on its cultural identities andnarratives, and gently infiltrated its peer networks.Instagram images of customised sneakers by Big Day Out audience members at a Vans branded installation4. The importance of culture, language and toneThe culture and language of social media are dynamic, and tone tends to shift as users interact. This means organisations have tobe able to understand and respond to the nuances of communication within specific audiences, for example in-jokes that play onreferences specific to a community or culture.06Alcohol anddrug information


CASE STUDY 3: ReachOut and the ‘99 problems’ memeLesson: Understanding culture, language and toneAs a leading online youth mental health service, ReachOutregularly adopts the language and disposition of its targetaudience to convey its messages.One way ReachOut does this is by adapting popular Internetmemes to spread its mental health message.In this example, ReachOut used a meme which drew onthe title and lyrics of a popular song by American rapper,Jay-Z, entitled ‘99 problems’. The song’s main refrain – “I got99 problems but a bitch ain’t one” – has become a popularcatchphrase, which has been widely parodied online. In thiscase, ReachOut adapted the refrain to suit its mental healthmessage: “I got 99 problems but… they can wait till Monday”.An image of the musician was used to reinforce the popculturereference and to further demonstrate that ReachOut is‘in the know’ and engaged in the cultural world of its audience.Images from ’99 problems’ meme on Facebook5. The relationship between public and privateBy blurring user-generated material and brand promotion, socialmedia has narrowed the gap between producers and consumers,and made everyday lives more public 15 . Users watch each otherand engage with particular platforms, while organisations watchand respond to users 16, 17, 18 . This notion of visibility influences theway people participate. Facebook users are largely voyeuristic intheir approach, regularly monitoring their news feed for updateson friends. Most are aware that what they do is visible to theirsocial network, and use their intuition to decide how others will seethem. Meanwhile, all users are being watched by Facebook, whichconducts non-invasive surveillance to collect data to inform thetargeting of content.Users have managed this ‘tension’ between public and privateby taking advantage of privacy settings, controlling disclosuresand participating in anonymous communities. Users of socialmedia site Reddit, for example, value the anonymity of thisplatform despite all content being publicly accessible. In fact,the perceived safety of anonymity has prompted a ‘confessional’culture, which gives way to more honest, frank and transgressivediscussions on a variety of normally taboo topics.Understanding the boundaries between the public andprivate enables organisations to pitch their messages andinteractions appropriately.PreventionResearch07


Social media at work in alcohol promotionRelatively unconstrainedby traditional social andstructural barriers – andtherefore challenging thedomain of public authority –social media represents newand unique opportunities formarketing activity 19, 20, 21 .Alcohol companies have been quick to take advantageof the accessibility provided by social media tonetworks through which they have pursued more directconversations with their audiences.While the subsequent ‘normalisation’ of problematicdrinking behaviour has raised concerns for public health,there are some useful lessons to be learned. Healthpromoters are competing with alcohol companies for theattention of an audience, which has readily engaged withthe visual and experiential promotion of drinking 21, 22, 23 .It is therefore an imperative for health promoters to becomemore attuned with their audience and the conversationscurrently taking place around drinking culture.1. Encourage users to broadcast your messageAlcohol brands have proven to be innovators in the use ofsocial media 24, 25 . They generate user interaction by postingcontent about cultural practices, showing interest in (askingquestions about) their audience, and running competitionsthat promote engagement while facilitating data collection.Networks develop as content is circulated from peer to peer.Consumers promote and ‘produce’ the brand as part of theirmediation of everyday life, and brands thereby becomeintegrated into the representation of drinking culture onsocial media 9, 10 .The subsequent brand-fuelled conversation in tweets, wallposts and brand statements, which work to normalise alcoholuse, demonstrates the magnitude of the issue for publichealth organisations. It is what researcher James Nichollsrefers to as ‘branded conversation stimulus’, whereby socialmedia allows alcohol marketers ‘to embed brand-relatedactivities in the routines of social media engagement for largenumbers of people, and to use social media to encourage amore routine approach to alcohol consumption’ 25 .This online promotion of drinking culture extends to socialmedia applications, which enable a range of activities,such as texting a drink to a friend, building shot collectionsand sharing mixed drink recipes. Venues and promotersoften use Facebook ‘event’ categories to advertise brandeddrinking activities involving discounted drinks and alcoholfocusedentertainment, for example, ‘Smirnoff Saturdays’,the ‘Captain Morgan Tour’ and the ‘Budweiser Keg Party’ 1 .In all instances, social media users have become active incirculating the message.2. Capitalise on social media intelligenceSocial media is characterised by its ability to watch, generatedata and respond to participants. Intelligence gained throughconversations on Twitter and networking sites like Facebookrepresents powerful data, used by brands to profile and targetaudiences 26 . When a user engages with a brand on Facebookthey hand over personal data, which is collected by bothFacebook and that brand to identify related social networks.Understanding the values, identities and cultural practicesof those networks allows brands to adapt and customisetheir campaigns accordingly. Brands and organisations cansimultaneously draw on multiple cultural identities to engagewith different markets.Paying attention to how target audiences are alreadycommunicating with each other is an important part of thismonitoring of social media. Social media analytics and searchengine optimisation can assist organisations in targetingmessages at specific audiences and monitoring the levelof engagement in real time. This enables effective use ofcommunication resources and ongoing evaluation 27 .08Alcohol anddrug information


CASE STUDY 4: Alcohol brands leverage FacebookThere are many ways in which alcohol brands useFacebook to normalise alcohol consumption. Thefollowing images illustrate various interactionsbetween brand and audience. Responses (‘likes’,comments and shares) are recorded alongside theimage post and signify the transfer of the messageinto the news feeds of participants and their friends.While the images originate from the brand page,the associated responses enable the images to‘travel’ through different Facebook networks.Lesson: Contextual engagementAt popular music festival, Splendour in the Grass,Strongbow Cider enhanced the festival experiencewith a branded social space featuring themed bars,an old sailing ship and a Kombi van. As festivalgoersdrank cider and enjoyed the festival from the deckof the Strongbow ship, the brand was incorporatedinto their memories of the event. To reinforcethis link, the brand encouraged participants to‘check in’ online from the constructed space andto upload self-generated images to their socialnetworking profiles. Images taken by the brandwere also uploaded to Facebook, where they werecirculated via the ‘likes’, tags and comments of thephotographed festivalgoers and their friends.Strongbow branded photographs of festivalgoers posted onlineSimilarly, Jack Daniel’s Australia hosted the‘Barrel House’ at Future Music Festival, whichaccommodated live music performances frompopular bands like Gypsy and the Cat. Videorecordings of the performances were posted toFacebook, where users were encouraged to watchand ‘like’ the post thereby circulating brandedcontent through their individual news feeds.Lesson: Memory revivalSocial media users create and share memories, relivingenjoyed experiences through images and stories. Alcoholbrands like Strongbow capitalise on these practices. In thedays following the Splendour music festival, Strongbowposted an image from the event and accompanied it with acaption that read, ‘Miss you already, Splendour’. It attracted85 ‘likes’, all of which were subsequently transfered into thenews feeds of friends. Most likely taken by a brand-appointedprofessional photographer, the image captured the ‘feel’ ofthe festival and implied that the brand ‘got it’ too.Embedding the brand in festival recollectionsJack Daniel’s Australia invitesFacebook users to watch a brandsponsored live music eventPreventionResearch09


CASE STUDY 4: Alcohol brands leverage Facebook continuedLesson: User-generated promotionAlcohol brands also use and solicit images created by their audience. These are often authentic, credible depictions ofthe brand’s incorporation into the everyday lives of consumers. The image in this example connects the consumptionof Victoria Bitter (VB) with a rugged masculinity embodied by the ute. The image attracted nearly 1000 interactionsfrom other Facebook users.A user-generated image lends itself to brand promotionLesson: Shared national identityAs part of their association with Legacy’s ‘Raise a Glass’ appeal forANZAC Day, VB invited users to sign up for a ‘wake up call’, whichbroadcast the dawn service from Major General Peter Cosgrove directlyto their smart phone. A Facebook post (pictured here) promoted the‘wake up call’ service, together with an interactive map listing thelocations of ANZAC Day dawn services across the country. Nationalrituals like ANZAC Day are widely mediated on Facebook as part of apersonal storytelling exercise, which incorporates everyday life, personalvalues and a national identity affiliation. VB has used ANZAC Day toembed itself within these national identity practices on social media.Interactive map linking brand and eventsLesson: Cultural pastimesAlcohol brands frequently post content that is time – and event – specific.For example, many beer brands post images and questions associatedwith sporting events on the weekend when games are most commonlyscheduled. Content that is image-driven and solicits a response fromthe audience promotes engagement. On a Friday night, VB might postan image that asks users whether they will be watching the NRL gameat the ground or on the TV at home. Responses enable circulation ofthe image across peer networks and embed the post within discussionsalready taking place about the game. The brand is thereby connected withpositive expressions on Facebook relating to the enjoyment of sport.VB gets in on the game10Alcohol anddrug information


Lesson: Everyday livesSocial media users often share ordinarydetails of their private lives. Images of homecookedfood are common on platforms likeFacebook and Instagram. In contrast to theVB examples, which reference nationalistand masculine identities, RekorderligCider engages with cultural practicescharacterised as more feminine, youthfuland in vogue. Correspondingly, the brand’starget audience regularly posts images ofmeals from cool cafes and restaurants, orspecial dishes prepared at home. In thisexample, Rekorderlig shares a pork roastrecipe incorporating its cider. The recipe,accompanied by an image with the caption‘Our Kitchen Rules’, was posted on a Mondaynight during the screening of popular TVprogram, My Kitchen Rules. Program viewersposted comments on their social mediaprofiles, and the Rekorderlig recipe wasthereby transmitted to their news feeds. Thepost generated more than 2100 interactionsand reinforced the importance of timing.Incorporating Rekorderlig cider ina recipe post on FacebookSocial media at work in health promotionThe following case studies examine social media practicesin health promotion, specifically within the AOD sector.They are organised around three strategic approaches tothe production and management of content.1. Controlling the production of contentProducing content that prompts user interaction willusually result in the circulation and amplification of themessage through peer networks. Organisations producemore effective content when they understand and drawon audience identities and everyday cultural practices.2. Using peer leaders and influencersPeer leaders and influencers within a particular socialgroup can be used as intermediaries to communicatecontent in an authentic and credible voice. Anorganisation can use these peer leaders to fosterinteraction with the target audience on social media.3. Facilitating user-generated contentRecognising the value of user-generated content, manyorganisations strive to facilitate a communication processbuilt on the peer-to-peer exchanges of social media users.PreventionResearch11


CASE STUDY 5: Wingman ‘pledge’Lesson: Controlling the productionof content, collaborating with theaudience“Got the Moves to keep you and your mates outof trouble? It takes a real champion to keep theirmates safe.”The Championship Moves’ ‘Wingman’ campaignuses the popular cultural identity of a ‘wingman’to encourage social peers to look after eachother and avoid alcohol-related violence*. Itis activated and enforced by the ‘Wingmanpledge’, which requires participants to committo wingman responsibilities. Audiencecollaboration is facilitated by multiple socialmedia platforms, including Facebook, Twitterand YouTube. They serve as both tools tomonitor wingman accountability and vehicles toenhance campaign reach.Invitation to take the Wingman pledge*Wingman definition: A matewho goes out with you andhelps you in social situations,sometimes sacrificing their ownenjoyment to do so.The Wingman pledge hits the news feedWingman participants photographed at a university event. The TopGun styled graphics and supply of props – popular aviator sunglasses– help to create a favourable memory and an appealing image,which is more likely to be shared beyond the event.The wingman identity is reinforced when thepledged wingman is dressed in aviation attireand photographed with friends and members ofthe public. The images are captured at social andsporting events, and then uploaded to Facebookto be shared, ‘liked’ and tagged. As participantsupload and circulate the images, they integratethe campaign into their social media practices andthereby amplify the campaign message. Whileimage sharing does not imply explicit support orunderstanding of the campaign message, it doessuggest that the participant is happy to connect thecampaign with his/her online identity. Visibility ofthe campaign then expands to peer networks andprovides an opportunity for further amplification.12Alcohol anddrug information


The Wingman campaign in-situ: wingmen characters in costume, equipped with playfulcampaign signage at a social (horseracing carnival) event. The sidebar to the right of the imagepost shows that the subjects of the photograph have been tagged, several people ‘liked’ the postand one person has commented. Each of these interactions increases visibility of the image (andtherefore the campaign) in the news feeds of other users. Corresponding social media analyticsenable tracking of message circulation and the sentiments expressed by participants.The Wingman campaign engages its target audience at cultural events conducive to popular content generation.The use of a playful and highly visual identity (the wingman) encourages social media uptake and integration of thecampaign message into social media streams.The Step Back Think campaign adopts a similar approach to the Wingman campaign, using real-world social eventsto stimulate interaction among target audience networks on social media. Striving to overhaul attitudes towardsstreet violence by encouraging young people to ‘step back and think’ about the consequences of throwing a punch,the campaign relies on the same playful, image-sharing strategy employed by the Wingman campaign. Similarly, it isrolled out at targeted events such as the Australian Teen Expo (pictured) and successfully capitalises on the ‘identity’promotion of its participants.The Step Back Think campaign at the Australian Teen ExpoPreventionResearch13


CASE STUDY 6: Live SolutionLesson: Using peer leaders and influencersUsing the live music scene as a dynamic backdropagainst which to promote a healthy drinking culture,Live Solution enlists a variety of Australian musicians toaddress the issue of drunken and disruptive behaviourat music gigs with their fans. The target audience forthe campaign is 16–25 year olds, who view footageof their favourite musicians discussing the issuethrough their own social media networks. While thecore message remains consistent, each artist scriptsthe video in his or her own ‘language’. As influentialcultural intermediaries, musicians have cultivatedlarge, dedicated and engaged audiences on socialmedia. They speak to these often niche cultural groupsfrankly and in a language which is more credible andaccessible than the formal channels typically employedby organisations and government agencies.Live Solution builds on existing attitudes in the musiccommunity. Bands and their fans already dislike fellowpunters who are overly intoxicated at shows and ruinthe experience for others. Building on this pre-existingcultural narrative, Live Solution thoroughly briefsthe artists, working with them to create and delivera message that reflects their cultural sensibilitiesand resonates with their audience. Some of theartists assume a serious disposition, while others arehumorous and irreverent. The videos are tailored to thecultural sensibilities of different musical genres. Hiphopartists videos, for example, have a direct, sincereand lyrical flow. In their video, Melbourne hip-hip duo,Diafrix, told fans:“One time we were performingand all like party was happening,and chickies was there, andeverybody was having a goodtime, and we’ve got this dude justjump on stage and we were likewhat and this guy start breakdancingbut I could tell he wasa little bit drunk. Dude breaksone move doin’ good, secondmove he’s doin’ good, the thirdhe misses by the cable, bra,broke his shoulder, don’t be thatman… we’re not trying to tellyou how to party or how to havefun just don’t be that guy in thenosebleed section passed out.”In contrast, indie artists tend to adopt a more laconicand irreverent disposition. Vocalist Fraser Harvey,from Triple-J Unearthed band, Cameras, uses a moresavvy tone:“Friends… well allow me toexplain some shit, you seewhen you show up to a gigand you’re blazingly drunk,scientists have found you’reat least a lot of percents morelikely to come across as acomplete rube to other peopleand you don’t even enjoy theperformance yourself.”This message from indie band, The Rubens,prompted ‘likes’, comments and shares.Regardless of their genre, all the artists emphasise thatthe experience of live music is culturally important,and that both bands and fans have a responsibility toprotect it. They suggest that binge drinking underminesshared cultural values and they integrate responsiblealcohol consumption into multiple identity networks onsocial media. These interactions work in tandem withstaged gigs, namely all-ages events and events with anemphasis on the responsible service of alcohol. The LiveSolution message is thereby embedded in the artists’conversation with their audience about their music andupcoming shows. The social media campaign is carriedby both the musician as a cultural intermediary and thetour as a cultural event, which attracts the attention ofthe fans.14Alcohol anddrug information


Stonefield’s video for Live Solution prompted ‘likes’, comments and shares on Facebook. Theysay, “when we play music and put shows on we want our audience to full appreciate it andactually there listening and not y’know zoned off…. it’s always good going to a gig and thenyou can actually remember it the next day”.CASE STUDY 7: Hello Sunday MorningLesson: Facilitating user-generated contentHello Sunday Morning (HSM) asks drinkers to commit togiving up alcohol consumption for a specific period (three,six or 12 months) and to blog about their experience. HSM’sparticipants are 63 per cent female and 37 per cent male, with46 per cent of them under 30 years old, 35 per cent in their30s, and 19 per cent over 40 years old. Some unique featuresof the HSM initiative:• Participant-generated content, whereby participants writein their own voice, tone, language and style, and share theirown cultural identities, experiences and practices.• The corresponding blogging community fosters peer-topeerdeliberation.• Peer leaders shape discussion within their particularsocial groups.• Participants create content that can be consistentlymonitored and evaluated.• Rather than saying ‘no’ to alcohol, the program is gearedtowards saying ‘yes’ to something else. This promptsparticipants to construct an identity around positivecultural practices, goals and behaviours.• The program fosters both individual and cultural change.HSM participants recognise, resist and subvert the waydrinking is mediated through social networking siteslike Facebook. By blogging about their experiences, theymake drinking culture ‘visible’ within their peer networks.Their identities (‘lived social relations’ 28 ) are always underconstruction and subject to new, ‘viable’ viewpoints andpractices around drinking in their peer network. The nextiteration of the HSM website will enable automatic sharingof HSM posts to Facebook, and of content from Facebookand Instagram pages back to HSM blogs. This encourages theseamless integration of HSM content into the online identitiesof participants.Fundamental to the authenticity and value of HSM is theopen narrative, which is easily adapted to participants’ ownexperiences, identity and cultural practices. This is especiallyevident in the content and tone of individual blogs. A middleagedmum from the suburbs, for example, might blog aboutdinner parties, drinking too much wine and family stresses.Likewise, using the language and experiences of their specificcultural milieu, one young person might blog about going outsober to dance clubs, while another young person may blogabout the drinking rituals of their football club. In each case, byemploying their own identities and worldviews, participantscraft narratives, illustrate social situations and use languagespecific to their peer networks.PreventionResearch15


CASE STUDY 7: Hello Sunday Morning continuedThe activity of blogging has several social andcommunicative functions:• Bloggers tend to reflect on their own culturalpractices to build viable identities.• Posting a blog entry makes them accountable to theirpeers and other participants.• The blogs prompt conversations with peers aboutdrinking norms 29 . These deliberations have substancebecause they are grounded in the languages andexperiences of participants’ peer networks.As HSM participants post blog entries and interact with thesite they generate data that can be used to monitor andevaluate the program. HSM has begun routinely collectingpre – and post – alcohol consumption data recorded byparticipants. This is supported by analyses of participantexperiences, as reported on their blogs. The blogs can be usedas information, which helps to monitor and conceptualisethe change process. Evaluation, via text-analytics software,enables HSM to illustrate the transformative journey ofparticipants, from sharing their drinking practices to reflectingon the role of alcohol in their lives, and finally adoptingthe norms of the HSM community long-term. The analyticsdemonstrate that, over time, the main themes and messagesof the program are integrated into personalised blog posts,which participants share with peers 30 .By monitoring the frequency and consistency of bloggingactivity, HSM can identify the peer leaders who are helpingto shape the discussion. HSM also collects broader metricsregarding the blog audiences, which reveal the visibility ofthe HSM initiative beyond direct contact.CASE STUDY 8a: Smiling MindLesson: Prompting participation throughmobile (smart phone) applicationsSmiling Mind is a web and mobile app, which pitchesmindfulness meditation programs to young people,schools and organisations. Targeting a smart phonefriendlyaudience, the app encourages users toincorporate meditation into their everyday lives as ameans to manage depression, stress and anxiety. Theprogram builds social elements around the largelysolitary practice of meditation by inviting users to sharetheir meditation practices through their Facebook andTwitter accounts. The idea is that meditation becomesone of the everyday practices that users post on theirsocial media profiles. This helps to foster peer-to-peerpromotion and build a visible online communityaround the program.It is often easier to get an individual to meditate if theactivity is perceived as ‘normal’ practice in their peergroup. To facilitate this, a meditation app must use astyle and tone that appeals to its target market. TheSmiling Mind app features minimal text and a clear(and accessible) layout, which encourages users toengage with the program immediately.By building communities of practice aroundmindfulness meditation, Smiling Mind is attemptingto reduce the stigma associated with issues relatedto mental health. The more often people publiclyincorporate meditation into their online identities, themore likely it is that the perception of mental healthwill shift from a ‘problem’ to ‘something we mustwork on regularly for the benefit of our overall health’.Much like exercise for physical fitness, Smiling Mindpromotes meditation for mental fitness 31 .As well as using peer-to-peer networks, Smiling Mindhas enlisted ambassadors including local mediapersonalities, musicians, sportspeople, academicsand high-profile public figures, who act as culturalintermediaries to promote the tool through theirniche networks.Social media analytics, including audience demographics onFacebook, enable Smiling Mind to adapt program content,target advertising and select future ambassadors. Theyare also able to assess the quality of interaction with theiraudience by tracking direct and repeated engagement withcontent, and monitoring comments and conversations.Smiling Mind has built simple evaluation tools into the app,including a wellbeing sliding scale and calculation of totalminutes spent meditating. This data is used to enhance theuser experience and, in future versions of Smiling Mind, toenable review of patterns of use and changes in wellbeing.Smiling Mind has also partnered with Monash University toundertake a comparative evaluation study that will monitorthe mental health and wellbeing of students who are usingSmiling Mind against those who are not.Users of the SmilingMind app can track theirmeditation history andsee how many usersare meditating at thesame time. The ability toreview progress promotesreflection and encourageslong-term behaviouralchanges, while knowledgeof other users helps to‘normalise’ the activity.16Alcohol anddrug information


CASE STUDY 8b: My QuitBuddyLesson: Prompting participation throughmobile (smart phone) applicationsMy QuitBuddy is a mobile app, which is part of theAustralian Government’s tobacco control initiative. Inaddition to providing facts about smoking and tips tohelp quit, the app prompts users to create a profile inwhich they detail their smoking habits and their goalsfor better health. Participants can customise the app totheir own experiences by adding photographs and voicerecordings of friends and family, which they can recall asneeded 32 . Data provided by participants (e.g. number ofcigarettes smoked) allows My QuitBuddy to calculate themoney saved, milligrams of tar not inhaled and cigarettesnot smoked by users during the program, and to trackreduction in smoking rates among users.The app makes a game of quitting by calculating themoney spent (and saved) and the amount of tar the userhas consumed (or not). Targeting 18–40 year-old smokers,the app records achievements while reminding participantsof the ‘rewards’ of not smoking. App users are 60 per centfemale and 40 per cent female. Approximately 40 per centare aged 18–24 years, 30 per cent 25–34 years and another30 per cent (though increasing) are aged 35–54 years.As with the Smiling Mind app, the campaign’s strength isin its mobility. Users are likely to carry their phones duringoccasions when they feel the need to smoke. As a mobileapplication, the service is constantly accessible. It also allowsusers to set up ‘danger’ notifications for occasions when theyknow they are at a greater risk of smoking. An additional‘community’ feature enables users to share their experienceor read about the experiences of other users. Shared notesprovide a platform for users to express how they are feeling,clarify their goals and motivations, and inspire fellow quitters.Following the success of the app, My QuitBuddy is beingdeveloped as a Facebook application. Users will be able toshare their progress with their Facebook friends, who will beable to comment, ‘like’ and offer support.Data provided by participantsallows My QuitBuddy tocalculate the money saved,milligrams of tar not inhaledand cigarettes not smokedby users during the program,and to track reduction insmoking rates among users.The My QuitBuddy appfeatures an interactive ‘body’,which details the healthbenefits of quitting. It alsodisplays a calculation of theamount of tar consumedand money spent per year onsmoking habits. Encouraginglyfor the user, and providingdata for the developer, thesecalculations change to ‘taravoided’ and ‘money saved’after the first day ‘smoke free’.PreventionResearch17


Six-step guide to leveraging social mediaUsing the information featured in this publication,we have produced a six-step guide to leveragingsocial media. This is particularly importantto health promoters as they compete for theattention of their target audience.Step 1: Log in and listenSocial media is built on the day-to-day practices of users,which means that health promoters must observe and listencarefully. Get started by signing up to one or more socialmedia platforms and observing how leaders in the field andpeople in your target audience use the platform.• Who is using the platform?• How is the platform used and for what?• What do users talk about?• What kinds of content do they share (text, images,videos, jokes)?• What is the overriding tone of conversations andexchanges?• When are people using the platform? Are thereparticular times of the day or week when certaintypes of conversations happen?Step 2: Identify your audienceSocial media has become integrated into the everyday livesof a diversity of audiences. To identify your target audienceon social media, begin with the conversations and practicesin which your audience is already engaged. From thereyou can build rapport by pursuing partnerships with peerleaders or engaging cultural intermediaries. Your messagesand ideas will only work when you are a credible part of yourtarget audience’s online social environment.• Is your target audience on social media?• What are they doing on social media?• Are they doing different things on different platforms?• When and where are they using social media?• Who are the influencers and intermediaries influencingdiscussion within specific audiences? What are theytalking about? What can you learn from them and howmight you engage them?• How can you engage with the existing practices,conversations and communities of your target audience?• Does the audience identify with your message or want todiscuss your brand, organisation and online presence intheir peer network?• What personality and tone of communication would fitwith both the target audience and the organisation’soverall communication strategy?Step 3: Match your social media strategyto your organisation’s objectivesSocial media must be interrelated with the core activitiesand communication objectives of your organisation. Onlythen can social media be used to amplify and circulate theexisting messages and activities of your organisation, whilepromoting consistency and credibility.After carefully observing how your target audiences areusing social media platforms, you should ask:• How can social media complement or enhance ourcurrent communication strategies and objectives?• What are the everyday activities and conversations inwhich your organisation is already engaged, and whichsocial media platforms could help to amplify these?• What audience conversations and practices could weengage with using social media?The development of a social media strategy, which relatesspecific communication and organisational objectives totargeted audiences and social media platforms, shouldprecede the development of operational policies andinvestment of resources in this area. Social media should beviewed as a long-term, incremental engagement with anaudience, around which short-term campaigns with discreteobjectives can be positioned. Through consistent andcontinuous engagement, health promoters can:• build and maintain a dedicated audience• develop the rapport and trust required for participation• foster community norms that regulate discussions, and• undertake longitudinal monitoring and evaluation 33 .Step 4: Consider contentand collaborationSocial media networks are built by individual users who createand circulate content. Organisations need to think about theconnections between what they want individuals to do and thekinds of social networks they want to foster 34 .What kind of content should be produced?Spend time familiarising yourself with your target audienceand doing things their way before getting to your ownmessages. Content is only effective and engaging ifparticipants and target audiences find it authentic andcredible 34 . Style, language, tone and context of content arecritical. Credibility comes from allowing intermediaries andparticipants to engage in the production and circulation ofthe content and to speak in their own voice 33, 35 . This meanshaving less control over every detail of the message andworking harder to manage the exchanges that unfold. Socialmedia involves being creative and having a personality. Yourwebsite might be serious, but for social media you need apersonality that aligns more directly with your audience.Who will engage with and circulate the content?Social media platforms are populated with the everydaypractices and interests of their users. Attempts tochange behaviour using social media are interrelatedwith the fostering of credible and viable culturalpractices and identities.• Consider what the audience is already saying and doing,and how you might engage, amplify or change this.• Iteratively work back and forth between your idealmessage and the way participants would choose tointeract with their peers 35 .• As an entry point, consider where social mediaconversations might intersect with your message.18Alcohol anddrug information


What kind of collaboration andaction are we seeing?Effective social media campaigns should not only promoteconversation, but also create viable identities in which positivehealth behaviours and attitudes can be incorporated. Thiscan involve the facilitation of action as much as discussion.Social media can be used to challenge norms and establish‘social contracts’ in peer groups, which keep participantsaccountable 33, 36 . This may be particularly effective incampaigns that model behavioural change around socialnorms, encourage peer-led change, and promote culturallyrelevant content and narratives 37–41 .Who do we want leading our conversation?Message delivery should be given just as much considerationas the message itself. Experts, cultural intermediaries andpeer leaders can create and circulate credible messagesand help develop informed conversations. This helps tocirculate ‘good’ information, build viable identities and modelconstructive conversations 33, 35 .What kind of community are wetrying to build?An effective social media strategy allows the audience todraw on their own experiences and ‘talk about them in waysthey want to talk about them’ 33 . The greatest risk to a socialmedia campaign, in terms of impact and effective use ofresources, is that no one will participate 36 . Communitiesmust, therefore, be moderated by people who understandthe tone and cultural practices of users 27 . Moderation, whichbegins by establishing a consistent tone and set of norms 34 ,isn’t necessarily about controlling what is said (via blocking ordeleting posts). It is about using audience conversation as thebasis for generating interaction 27 .Step 5: Ready your resourcesSocial media requires resources. You don’t have to buy mediaspace, but you do need skilled individuals and the time toproduce content and manage interactions with your targetaudience.• What resources are required to produce content?• What resources, people and skills are required to buildcommunities and moderate conversations?• How regularly will resources be required to produce content?• What resources are required to monitor and respond toconversations?• Who will be responsible for responding to users? Do theyhave the cultural capacity to understand and maintainthe tone of conversation with your target audience? Dothey have the authority to respond to the audience andmoderate the conversation as required?Step 6: Evaluate your impactThe impact of social media can be conceptualised withinestablished frameworks for evaluation 34, 42 . As one partof a larger promotion or intervention 27, 32, 36 , social mediaevaluation offers:• new forms of data that complement establishedforms of evaluation• real-time evaluation of reach and engagement, and• new forms of data that prompt novel ways of thinkingabout targeting and evaluation.Social media analytics, supported by information from onlinepolls and questionnaires, can be used to:• track who is engaging, how often, where and when• identify community norms, and influential culturalintermediaries and peer leaders• target messages more effectively to increase reachand awareness• adapt and deliver content to different groupssimultaneously• understand how practices, viewpoints and identitieschange over time• enable real time response (and efficient use ofresources) 34• recruit real time control groups comprising secondary(indirect) users from peer networks 27 .It is expected that socialmedia will be incorporatedinto the development ofpredictive health interventions 36 .Some of the future directionsof social media data andevaluation include:• monitoring longitudinal change within user profiles 27• using text analytics to track changes in conversations,sentiments, feelings and attitudes in populations overtime, and• linking analysis of user activity on social media withpopulation health data. This data may identify thecharacteristics of specific groups, thereby enabling easiertargeting and monitoring of audiences online.PreventionResearch19


ConclusionSocial media thrives on the everyday interactionsof its users, while simultaneously depictingtheir behavioural norms and social practices.Health promoters must become part of theconversation to compete with their commercialcounterparts, who have successfully navigated thiscontemporary and dynamic space.Health promoters must approach social media as anongoing collaborative process. This requires considerationof how and why audiences are likely to incorporate healthmessages into their social media activities. The corechallenge is to create content that users want to associatewith their online identities.If health promoters can successfully engage with thecommunication practices of their audience, they stand toproduce more collaborative and participatory exchangesthat will lead to incremental social and cultural change.References1. McCreanor, T., Lyons, A., Griffin, C.,Goodwin, I., Moewaka Barnes, H., &Hutton, F. (2012). Youth drinking cultures,social networking and alcohol marketing:implications for public health. CriticalPublic Health, 23(1), 110-120.2. Australian Medical Association. (2012).Alcohol marketing and young people: timefor a new policy agenda. ACT: Kingston.3. Lefebvre, C. (2007). The new technology:the consumer as participant rather thantarget audience. Social Marketing Quarterly,13(3), 31-42.4. Sensis. (2012). Yellow social media report:what Australian people and businessesare doing with social media. Sensis & theAustralian Interactive Media IndustryAssociation. Retrieved April 24, 2013,from http://about.sensis.com.au/IgnitionSuite/uploads/docs/FinalYellow_SocialMediaReport_digital_screen.pdf5. Gauntlett, D. (2011). Making is connecting.Cambridge: Polity Press.6. boyd, d. (2007). Why youth (heart) socialnetwork sites: The role of networkedpublics in teenage social life. InBuckingham, D (ed.) Macarthur FoundationSeries on Digital Learning – Youth, Identityand Digital Media Volume (pp.119-142).Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.7. Marwick, A.E., & boyd, d. (2011). I tweethonestly, I tweet passionately: Twitterusers, context collapse, and the imaginedaudience. New Media and Society, 13(1),114-133.8. Griffiths, R., & Casswell, S. (2010).Intoxigenic digital spaces? Youth, socialnetworking sites and alcohol marketing.Drug and Alcohol Review, 29(5), 525–530.9. Moreno, M., Briner, L.R., Williams, A.,Brockman, L., Walker, L., & Christakis, D.A.(2010). A content analysis of displayedalcohol references in a social networkingweb site. Journal of Adolescent Health, 47,168-175.10. Ridout, B., Campbell, A., & Ellis, L. (2011).Off your Facebook: alcohol in online socialidentity construction and its relation toproblem drinking in university students.Drug and Alcohol Review, 31(1), 20–26.11. Livingstone, S. (2008). Taking riskyopportunities in youthful content creation:teenagers’ use of social networking sitesfor intimacy, privacy and self-expression.New Media and Society, 10(3), 393-411.12. Brown, R., & Gregg, M. (2012). Thepedagogy of regret: Facebook, bingedrinking and young women. Continuum:Journal of Media and Cultural Studies, 26(3),357-369.13. Hearn, A. (2008). Meat, mask, burden:probing the contours of the branded ‘self’.Journal of Consumer Culture, 8(2), 197-217.20Alcohol anddrug information


14. Moor, E. (2003). Branded spaces: the scopeof new marketing. Journal of ConsumerCulture, 39(3), 41-60.15. boyd, d. (2008). Facebook’s privacytrainwreck. Convergence: The InternationalJournal of Research into New MediaTechnologies, 14(1), 13-20.16. Crawford, K. (2009). Following you:disciplines of listening in social media.Continuum: Journal of Media and CulturalStudies, 23(4), 525-535.17. Trottier, D., & Lyon, D. (2012). Key featuresof social media surveillance. In Fuchs, C.,Boersma, K., Albrechtslund, A., & Sandoval,M. Internet and Surveillance: the Challenges ofWeb 2.0 and Social Media (pp. 89-105). NewYork: Routledge.18. Turow, J. (2011). The daily me: how theadvertising industry is defining your identityand your worth. New Haven: Yale UniversityPress.19. Carter, S. (2003). Going below the line:creating transportable brands for Australia’sdark market. Tobacco Control, 12, iii87-iii94.20. Darling, H., & Reeder, A. (2004). 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Retrieved June 17, 2013, fromhttps://www.quantcast.com/tumblr.com#!demoPreventionResearch21


Appendix A: Social media snapshot: The world’s largestWhat is it? Who uses it? How does it work?What makesit unique?What’s in it forhealth promoters?FacebookWorld’s largest socialnetworking site.Social interactionswith friends throughstatus updates, events,comments and photos.Commercialinteractions withbrands, organisationsand groups withshared interests.Public and privatespheres (user ‘walls’,organisation pages,private messages).Two thirds of onlineAustralians have anaccount. 175 per cent of thoseusers logon every day. 1The average userspends over sevenhours on Facebooka month. 297 per cent ofVictorian socialmedia users havean account. 3Users post contenton their own page,friends’ pages, or pagesof users (people andgroups) they ‘like’.Interactions are visibleto all ‘friends’ in a‘news feed’ containingstatus updates, ‘likes’,comments, sharedimages and videos,tags (links) andcheck-ins (links togeographic location).Accessible viasmart phones.Regular interaction.Available as amobile platform.Targeted advertising(including linksthrough ‘peer leader’networks).Multiple ad locations(on-screen, news feeds,alongside friends’updates).Public group pagesable to offer metricsand analytics aboutuser engagement.Access to large anddiverse audience.Ability to target differentaudience segments.Users are accountable(their friends can ‘see’what they are doing).Mobility enablescommunication withpeople when and wherethey are consumingalcohol and other drugs.TwitterNews and informationshared in messagesno more than 140characters long.Users followfriends, companies,organisations,celebrities andinfluential orauthoritative peoplewithin a certain interestor area of expertise(news, politics, popularculture).Typically used asa public platform(conversations).18 per cent of 20-29year old social mediausers have an account.20 per cent of 40 to 49year old social mediausers have an account.17 per cent of Victoriansocial media users havean account. 3Max 140 character textupdates called ‘tweets’that may contain linksto other web contentincluding websites,videos and images.Tweets can be‘favourited’, geotaggedand re-tweetedConversations areformed around themesand events using‘hashtags’.Hashtags can beincorporated toidentify commentsof a particular theme(e.g. #addiction),researchable byall users.Mobile platform(instantaneous).Access to Twitterhashtag trends.Interaction with othersocial media platforms(e.g. Facebook).Creation andmanagement ofthemed conversations.Access to highlyengaged Twittercommunities.YouTubeWorld’s largest videosharing platform.‘Channels’ created byindividuals, celebrities,companies andorganisations.Users can subscribe tochannels or watch andcomment on singlevideos.Videos can be‘embedded’ orshared on other webplatforms and socialnetworking sites.You don’t need anaccount to watchYouTube videos. InAustralia there are 11million YouTube users.Videos are uploaded tothe site.Videos can thenbe commented on,responded to byvideo, ‘liked’, ‘disliked’,‘favourited’, added to aplaylist or shared.Capacity to ‘embed’videos on otherwebpages and socialmedia platforms – thismakes the content‘shareable’.Way to connect with abroad range of users,health promotionmessages on YouTubeare easily shared.Access to contentproducers withestablished subscriberbases.Access to alreadyexistingcommunitieson site.22Alcohol anddrug information


social media platformsWhat is it? Who uses it? How does it work?What makesit unique?What’s in it forhealth promoters?InstagramWorld’s largestentirely mobile andvisual social mediaplatform, enabled bysmart phones.Users follow friends,celebrities, companiesor organisations(public or private).41 per cent of 14-19year old Australiansocial media users havean account.30 per cent of 20-29year old social mediausers have an account.20 per cent of Victoriansocial media users havean account. 3Before uploading theirphotos, users canedit , add a comment,geo-tag and sharethem on other socialnetworking platforms.Other users can then‘like’, comment on orshare the photo.Images can beorganised aroundthemes and eventsusing ‘hashtags’.An entirely mobileplatform (accessed viasmart phone app).Geo-tagging allowsusers to exploreimages tagged atparticular locations(includes ‘photomaps’).Public imagessearchable viahashtags.Ability to post imagesthat engage withpractices (socialising,drinking) in real-time.Ability to connectcontent withparticular locations.TumblrSocial micro-bloggingnetworkTypically short postswith only one medium(video, audio, image)with a title and captionUsed mostly tocurate and aggregatecontent found on theweb, or to post imagescreated by user.2.8 million Australian Users can publish theirusers. 4own posts or comment53 per cent female.on, like and re-blog theposts of others.Popular with under30 year olds. 5A mobile app allowsusers to browse otherblogs and add poststo their own.Access to nicheaudiences, and peerleaders and adopters,around particular culturalpractices and scenes.RedditContent sharingcommunity, basedaround themedmessage boards.Different subcommunities(subreddits), whichshare informationaround a certain ideaor theme.Anonymous users.180,000 Australianusers. 455 per cent male.56 per cent have sometertiary education. 5Users upload content(text, links, images, andvideo) within a subcommunity.Users seek advice.Content can becommented on andrated.Viewing priority givento highly rated content.Users have a lot ofcontrol and are largelyanonymous.Organisation is largelydecentralised.Access to preestablished,nichecommunities discussingspecific issues.Subreddits dedicatedto AOD related themesand associated culturalpractices.Anonymity promotesfrank and transgressivediscussions.AMA subreddits (AskMe Anything) usefulplaces to gather andshare information.PinterestContent and imagesharing via virtual,publicly visible ‘pinboards’.Users aggregate andcurate images fromthe Internet to createrepresentations ofa particular desire,identity or idea theycan share with theirfriends.11 per cent ofAustralian femalesocial media usershave an account. 3Users make different‘pinboards’ by ‘pinning’images and video fromaround the Internet.Pins can be ‘liked’,‘followed’, commentedon, re-pinned andshared via other socialmedia platforms.Pins searchable byvarious categories.Users have completecontrol of their identityconstruction – no limitsof money, location orphysical appearance.Ability to createthemed boards withcontent that promotesparticular practices,products or identitiesthat users can ‘re-pin’onto their own boards.PreventionResearch23


Online resourcesGovernmentand publiccommunicationResource (click to link to website)International Associationfor Public ParticipationeGovernment Resource CentreIBM Centre for Business of GovernmentDescriptionCore values and code of ethics for public participation.Extensive collection of public sector social media policies.Research reports on emerging trends andinnovation in social media.Analytics Google Analytics Excellent resources on using analytics.Analytics blogs: Cutroni Blog written by Google Analytics advocateJustin Cutroni.Web Metrics GuruBlog written by independent web and social mediaanalytics specialist Marshall Sponder.Social mediabloggersBlogs with a publicand NGO focus:Connected CopsExtensive resources on using social media in lawenforcement.David EavesLeading blog on new media and public policy.Bang the TableBlog about online community management.DelibBlog on practising digital democracy.eGovAUCraig Thomler’s Australian blog on e-government.Helpful TechnologyDigital engagement in the public sector.DigifiphileAlex Howard, a leading commentator, blog onGovernment 2.0.Blogs with a commercial focus: Socialnomics Leading blog on social media.Almost SavvyWindmill NetworkingSocial NorthHeidi CohenJon LoomerThe Social SkinnyA blog with good advice for beginners.A blog written by a leading commentator andconsultant on social media.A blog with a focus on blogging, communities andwomen.A blog with practical advice on digital marketingand social media.A blog with practical and technical advice on socialmedia apps, tools and analytics.A blog with an Australian focus and straightforwardadvice and analysis.News sites andaggregatorsSocial Media TodayMashableGov 2.0 RadioMeritalkBusiness 2 CommunitySocial Media ExaminerSocial Media ExplorerNews and aggregated informationabout social media.25Alcohol anddrug information


AcknowledgementsThe work of authors, Dr Nicholas Carahand Michelle Shaul, was supported bya reference group that included: PeterNguyen and Isaac Reid, Departmentof Health; Ray Stephens, ReGen; SimonBlankenstein, Better Health Channel;Sophie Buchanan, VicHealth; ChrisMcDonnell, Victorian Alcohol and DrugAssociation; Eddie Micallef, EthnicCommunities Council of Victoria; JulieRae and Kate James, Australian DrugFoundation. A number of key informantsalso assisted the author: Carl Gardiner,Live Solution; Chris Raine, Hello SundayMorning; David Haubenschild, BetterHealth Channel; Hugh Stephens,Dialogue Consulting; Mary Jana Griffin,Australian National Preventative HealthAgency; Jane Martino, Smiling Mind.The Prevention Research publication issupported by the Victorian GovernmentAlcohol & Drug InformationWe provide information and resourceson a range of topics for allied healthand youth workers, clinicians, teachers,students, parents, people who usedrugs, policy makers, workplaces, localgovernments and sports clubs.Visit www.druginfo.adf.org.auCall 1300 858 584Email druginfo@adf.org.auStay informedtwitter.com/AustDruglinkedin.com/company/australian-drug-foundationfacebook.com/AustralianDrugFoundationThe Australian Drug FoundationWe are a leading source of evidence-basedinformation and resources about alcoholand other drugs. Since our creation in 1959,we have advocated for change, which hasimpacted on minimising harm caused byalcohol and other drugs in our society. Weare creating strong, healthy communitiesthrough: education and support for parentsand young people, and extending our reachinto sporting clubs and workplaces.audioboo.fm/AustDrugFoundationadf.org.au/subscribeHealthy people.Strong communities.Alcohol and drug informationCommunity programsPolicy and advocacyWorkplace servicesAustralian Drug FoundationLevel 12, 607 Bourke Street Melbourne PO Box 818 North Melbourne Victoria Australia 3051Phone 03 9611 6100 Fax 03 8672 5983 adf@adf.org.au www.adf.org.au ABN 66 057 731 192DisclaimerThe Australian Drug Foundation has used its best endeavours to ensure thatmaterial contained in this publication was correct at the time of printing. TheAustralian Drug Foundation gives no warranty and accepts no responsibility forthe accuracy or completeness of information and reserves the right to makechanges without notice at any time in its absolute discretion. Views expressedin this publication are those of the individual authors and the informants, andmay not reflect the views or policies of the Australian Drug Foundation.Unless otherwise noted, images are for illustrative purposes only.Copyright © Australian Drug Foundation, June 2013. ABN 66 057 731 192.Content within this publication may be freely photocopied or transmittedprovided the author and the Australian Drug Foundation are appropriatelyacknowledged. Copies of this publication must not be sold. Authorisedand published by the Australian Drug Foundation, 12/607 Bourke Street,Melbourne, 3000.

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