Youth Study Recruitment Using Paid Advertising on Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook: Cross-Sectional Survey Study.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:The use of paid social media advertising for targeted study recruitment is an effective strategy in health research and evaluation, specifically to reach diverse youth participants. Although the literature adequately describes the utility of Facebook in recruitment, limited information exists for social media platforms that are more popular with youth, specifically Instagram and Snapchat. OBJECTIVE:This paper outlines a paid advertising approach using Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook to evaluate a statewide youth marijuana prevention campaign. The objective of this study was to compare recruitment metrics across Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook for two surveys documenting youth knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors related to retail marijuana in Colorado post legalization. In addition, the study assessed the feasibility of using Instagram and Snapchat as effective additions to Facebook for youth study recruitment. METHODS:A social media recruitment strategy was used to conduct two cross-sectional surveys of youth, aged 13 to 20 years, in Colorado. Geographically targeted ads across 3 social media platforms encouraged the completion of a Web-based self-administered survey. Ad Words and Snap Ads were used to deploy and manage advertising campaigns, including ad design, placement, and analysis. Ad costs and recruitment metrics (ie, impressions, link clicks, and conversion rates) were calculated across the three social media platforms. RESULTS:Over two 1-month periods, 763,613 youth were reached (ie, impressions), 6089 of them clicked survey links (ie, clicks), and 828 eligible youth completed surveys about knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors related to retail marijuana. Instagram converted 36.13% (803/2222) of impressions to clicks (ie, conversion rate) in the first survey and 0.87% (864/98982) in the second survey. Snapchat generated the most impressions and link clicks, but it did so with the lowest conversion rate for both surveys, with a 1.40% (1600/114,200) conversion rate in the first survey and a 0.36% (1818/504700) conversion rate in the second survey. Facebook maintained a consistent conversion rate of roughly 2% across both surveys, despite reductions in budget for the second survey. The cost-per-click ranged between US $0.25 and $0.37 across the three platforms, with Snapchat as both the most cost-effective platform in the first survey and the most expensive platform in the second survey. CONCLUSIONS:Recruitment and enrollment outcomes indicate the use of Instagram and Snapchat, in addition to Facebook, may be a modern, useful, and cost-effective approach to reach youth with surveys on sensitive health topics. As the use of Facebook declines among youth, the use of more popular social media platforms can augment study recruitment for health research and evaluation efforts.
Project description:Studies examining representations of college drinking on social media have almost exclusively focused on Facebook. However, recent research suggests college students may be more influenced by peers' alcohol-related posts on Instagram and Snapchat, two image-based platforms popular among this demographic. One potential explanation for this differential influence is that qualitative distinctions in the types of alcohol-related content posted by students on these three platforms may exist. Informed by undergraduate focus groups, this study examined the hypothesis that, of the three platforms, students tend to use Instagram most often for photos glamourizing drinking and Snapchat for incriminating photos of alcohol misuse and negative consequences. Undergraduate research assistants aided investigators in developing hypothetical vignettes and photographic examples of posts both glamorizing and depicting negative consequences associated with college drinking. In an online survey, vignette and photo stimuli were followed by counterbalanced paired comparisons that presented each possible pair of social media platforms. Undergraduates (N=196) selected the platform from each pair on which they would be more likely to see each post. Generalized Bradley-Terry models examined the probabilities of platform selections. As predicted, Instagram was seen as the most probable destination (and Facebook least probable) for photos depicting alcohol use as attractive and glamorous. Conversely, Snapchat was selected as the most probable destination (and Facebook least probable) for items depicting negative consequences associated with heavy drinking. Results suggest researchers aiming to mitigate the potential influences associated with college students' glamorous and consequential alcohol-related photos posted social media posts should shift their focus from Facebook to Instagram and Snapchat.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Novel alcohol prevention strategies are needed for heavy-drinking young adults. Sleep problems are common among young adults who drink heavily and are a risk factor for developing an alcohol use disorder (AUD). Young adults, interested in the connection between sleep and alcohol, are open to getting help with their sleep. Therefore, sleep interventions may offer an innovative solution. This study evaluates social media advertising for reaching young adults and recruiting them for a new alcohol prevention program focused on sleep. OBJECTIVE:This study aims to evaluate the effectiveness and cost of using Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat advertising to reach young adults who drink heavily for a sleep intervention; characterize responders' sleep, alcohol use, and related concerns and interests; and identify the most appealing advertising content. METHODS:In study 1, advertisements targeting young adults with sleep concerns, heavy alcohol use, or interest in participating in a sleep program ran over 3 months. Advertisements directed volunteers to a brief web-based survey to determine initial sleep program eligibility and characterize the concerns or interests that attracted them to click the advertisement. In study 2, three advertisements ran simultaneously for 2 days to enable us to compare the effectiveness of specific advertising themes. RESULTS:In study 1, advertisements generated 13,638 clicks, 909 surveys, and 27 enrolled volunteers in 3 months across the social media platforms. Fees averaged US $0.27 per click, US $3.99 per completed survey, US $11.43 per volunteer meeting initial screening eligibility, and US $106.59 per study enrollee. On average, those who completed the web-based survey were 21.1 (SD 2.3) years of age, and 69.4% (631/909) were female. Most reported sleep concerns (725/909, 79.8%) and an interest in the connection between sleep and alcohol use (547/909, 60.2%), but few had drinking concerns (49/909, 5.4%). About one-third (317/909, 34.9%) were identified as being at risk for developing an AUD based on a validated alcohol screener. Among this subsample, 8.5% (27/317) met the final criteria and were enrolled in the trial. Some volunteers also referred additional volunteers by word of mouth. In study 2, advertisements targeting sleep yielded a higher response rate than advertisements targeting alcohol use (0.91% vs 0.56% click rate, respectively; P<.001). CONCLUSIONS:Social media advertisements designed to target young adults with sleep concerns reached those who also drank alcohol heavily, despite few being concerned about their drinking. Moreover, advertisements focused on sleep were more effective than those focused on drinking. Compared with previous studies, cost-effectiveness was moderate for engagement (impressions to clicks), excellent for conversion (clicks to survey completion), and reasonable for enrollment. These data demonstrate the utility of social media advertising focused on sleep to reach young adults who drink heavily and recruit them for intervention.
Project description:Further understanding is needed of the functionalities and efficiency of social media for health intervention research recruitment. Facebook was examined as a mechanism to recruit young adults for a smoking cessation intervention. An ad campaign targeting young adult smokers tested specific messaging based on market theory and successful strategies used to recruit smokers in previous clinical trials (i.e. informative, call to action, scarcity, social norms), previously successful ads, and general messaging. Images were selected to target smokers (e.g., lit cigarette), appeal to the target age, vary demographically, and vary graphically (cartoon, photo, logo). Facebook's Ads Manager was used over 7 weeks (6/10/13 - 7/29/13), targeted by age (18-25), location (U.S.), and language (English), and employed multiple ad types (newsfeed, standard, promoted posts, sponsored stories) and keywords. Ads linked to the online screening survey or study Facebook page. The 36 different ads generated 3,198,373 impressions, 5,895 unique clicks, at an overall cost of $2,024 ($0.34/click). Images of smoking and newsfeed ads had the greatest reach and clicks at the lowest cost. Of 5,895 unique clicks, 586 (10%) were study eligible and 230 (39%) consented. Advertising costs averaged $8.80 per eligible, consented participant. The final study sample (n=79) was largely Caucasian (77%) and male (69%), averaging 11 cigarettes/day (SD=8.3) and 2.7 years smoking (SD=0.7). Facebook is a useful, cost-effective recruitment source for young adult smokers. Ads posted via newsfeed posts were particularly successful, likely because they were viewable via mobile phone. Efforts to engage more ethnic minorities, young women, and smokers motivated to quit are needed.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Social media use continues to gain momentum in academic neurosurgery. To increase journal impact and broaden engagement, many scholarly publications have turned to social media to disseminate research. The Journal of Neurosurgery Publishing Group (JNSPG) established a dedicated, specialized social media team (SMT) in November 2016 to provide targeted improvement in digital outreach. OBJECTIVE:The goal of this study was to examine the impact of the JNSPG SMT as measured by increased engagement. METHODS:We analyzed various metrics, including impressions, engagements, retweets, likes, profile clicks, and URL clicks, from consecutive social media posts from the JNSPG's Twitter and Facebook platforms between February 1, 2015 and February 28, 2019. Standard descriptive statistics were utilized. RESULTS:Between February 2015 and October 2016, when a specialized SMT was created, 170 tweets (8.1 tweets/month) were posted compared to 3220 tweets (115.0 tweets/month) between November 2016 and February 2019. All metrics significantly increased, including the impressions per tweet (mean 1646.3, SD 934.9 vs mean 4605.6, SD 65,546.5; P=.01), engagements per tweet (mean 35.2, SD 40.6 vs mean 198.2, SD 1037.2; P<.001), retweets (mean 2.5, SD 2.8 vs mean 10.5, SD 15.3; P<.001), likes (mean 2.5, SD 4.0 vs mean 18.0, SD 37.9; P<.001), profile clicks (mean 1.5, SD 2.0 vs mean 5.2, SD 43.3; P<.001), and URL clicks (mean 13.1, SD 14.9 vs mean 38.3, SD 67.9; P<.001). Tweets that were posted on the weekend compared to weekdays had significantly more retweets (mean 9.2, SD 9.8 vs mean 13.4, SD 25.6; P<.001), likes (mean 15.3, SD 17.9 vs mean 23.7, SD 70.4; P=.001), and URL clicks (mean 33.4, SD 40.5 vs mean 49.5, SD 117.3; P<.001). Between November 2015 and October 2016, 49 Facebook posts (2.3 posts/month) were sent compared to 2282 posts (81.5 posts/month) sent between November 2016 and February 2019. All Facebook metrics significantly increased, including impressions (mean 5475.9, SD 5483.0 vs mean 8506.1, SD 13,113.9; P<.001), engagements (mean 119.3, SD 194.8 vs mean 283.8, SD 733.8; P<.001), and reach (mean 2266.6, SD 2388.3 vs mean 5344.1, SD 8399.2; P<.001). Weekend Facebook posts had significantly more impressions per post (mean 7967.9, SD 9901.0 vs mean 9737.8, SD 19,013.4; P=.03) and a higher total reach (mean 4975.8, SD 6309.8 vs mean 6108.2, SD 12,219.7; P=.03) than weekday posts. CONCLUSIONS:Social media has been established as a crucial tool for the propagation of neurosurgical research and education. Implementation of the JNSPG specialized SMT had a demonstrable impact on increasing the online visibility of social media content.
Project description:Social media campaigns provide broad-reach and convenience for promoting freely-available health programs. However, their effectiveness and subsequent engagement of new users is unknown. This study aimed to assess the reach and new member registration rates resulting from a dedicated 10,000 Steps social media campaign (SMC) and to compare program engagement and time to non-usage attrition of new users from the SMC with other users. SMC reach (using Facebook, Instagram, and display advertisements engagement metrics), new-user numbers, engagement (usage of the website and its features), and time to non-usage attrition were assessed using generalized linear regression, binary logistic regression, and Cox proportion hazards regression models. During the SMC, Instagram and display advertisement impressions, Facebook reach and new daily registrations were significantly higher compared with six weeks and one year prior. There were no between-group differences in the average usage of most website/program features. Risk of non-usage attrition was higher among new users from the SMC than new users from one year prior. The SMC was effective in promoting awareness of the 10,000 Steps program. Further research to identify long-term engagement strategies and the most effective combination of social media platforms for promotion of, and recruitment to, health programs is warranted.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The prevalence of social media makes it a potential alternative to traditional offline methods of recruiting and engaging participants in health research. Despite burgeoning use and interest, few studies have rigorously evaluated its effectiveness and feasibility in terms of recruitment rates and costs, sample representativeness, and retention. OBJECTIVE:This study aimed to determine the feasibility of using Facebook to recruit employed Australian parents to an online survey about managing work and family demands, specifically to examine (1) recruitment rates and costs; (2) sample representativeness, compared with a population-based cohort of parents; and (3) retention, including demographic and health characteristics of parents who returned to complete a follow-up survey 6 weeks later. METHODS:Recruitment was conducted using 20 paid Facebook advertising campaigns, supplemented with free advertising approaches such as posts on relevant Facebook pages and requests for professional networks to circulate the survey link via Facebook. Recruitment rates and costs were evaluated using the Checklist for Reporting Results of Internet E-Surveys, including view rate, participation rate, completion rate, cost per consent, and cost per completer. Sample representativeness was evaluated by comparing demographic and outcome variables with a comparable sample from the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children including educational attainment, marital status, country of birth, neighborhood disadvantage, work-family conflict, and psychological distress. Retention was evaluated by comparing the number and demographic characteristics of participants at recruitment and at 6-week follow-up. RESULTS:Recruitment strategies together resulted in 6653 clicks on the survey link, from which 5378 parents consented to participate and 4665 (86.74%) completed the survey. Of those who completed the survey, 85.94% (4009/4665) agreed to be recontacted, with 57.79% (2317/4009) completing the follow-up survey (ie, 43.08% [2317/5378] of parents who consented to the initial survey). Paid Facebook advertising recruited nearly 75% of the sample at Aus $2.32 per completed survey (Aus $7969 spent, 3440 surveys completed). Compared with a population-based sample, participants at baseline were more likely to be university educated (P<.001), experience greater work-family conflict (P<.001) and psychological distress (P<.001), and were less likely to be born outside Australia (P<.001) or live in a disadvantaged neighborhood (P<.001). CONCLUSIONS:Facebook provided a feasible, rapid method to recruit a large national sample of parents for health research. However, some sample biases were observed and should be considered when recruiting participants via Facebook. Retention of participants at 6- to 8-week follow-up was less than half the initial sample; this may reflect limited ongoing participant engagement for those recruited through social media, compared with face-to-face.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Exposure to risk behavior on social media is associated with risk behavior tendencies among adolescents, but research on the mechanisms underlying the effects of social media exposure is sparse. OBJECTIVE:This study aimed to investigate the motivations of social media use and the mediating and moderating mechanisms of their effects on attitude toward electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) use among adolescents. METHODS:Using data from a national sample survey of adolescents (age=14-17 years, N=594), we developed and validated a social media use motivation scale. We examined the roles of motivations in the effect of social media use on risk exposure and risk attitude. RESULTS:Motivations for social media use included agency, self-expression, realism, social learning, social comparison, and filter. These motivations were associated differentially with the frequency of use of Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube. Frequency of social media use was positively associated with exposure to e-cigarette messages across the four platforms (Ps<.001). Exposure to e-cigarette messages on Instagram (P=.005) and Snapchat (P=.03) was positively associated with attitude toward e-cigarette use. Perceived social media realism moderated the effects of e-cigarette message exposure such that when realism was high, the exposure effect was amplified, but when realism was low, the effect was mitigated (P<.001). A three-way interaction effect (P=.02) among exposure, social learning motivation, and social norm on attitude toward e-cigarette use was found. When perceived social norm was high, the moderating effect of social learning motivation on e-cigarette use attitude was amplified, but when social norm was low, the social learning motivation effect was attenuated. CONCLUSIONS:Because perceived social media realism moderates the effect of exposure to e-cigarette messages on attitude toward e-cigarette use, future intervention efforts should address the realism perceptions. The three-way interaction among exposure, social learning motivation, and social norm indicates the importance of addressing both the online and offline social environments of adolescents. The social media use motivation scale, reflecting perceived affordances, is broadly applicable. Understanding social media use motivations is important, as they indirectly influence attitude toward e-cigarette use via frequency of social media use and/or frequency of exposure to e-cigarette messages on social media.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, which have millions of users who interact and communicate every day, have been effective in promoting sexual health interventions and in disseminating reproductive health education. They have also been shown to be useful in health promotion and have been used to track several key metrics (eg, comments, posts) among users of all demographics. However, there is a lack of research on the impact and reach of these social media platforms as a community-based tool for disseminating sexual health information and for increasing engagement among Black adolescents and young adults, which is a targeted high-risk population. OBJECTIVE:The purpose of this study was to determine the social media platforms and banner advertisements that affected engagement among Black male adolescents and young adults in participating in web-based health surveys. METHODS:A web-based survey was conducted from March 2019 to July 2019 to assess sexual health and health behaviors in a convenience sample of Black male adolescents and young adults in the age range of 18-24 years (N=170). Social media metrics from Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter were monitored. This cross-sectional survey comprised several categories, including basic personal information, drug-related risk behaviors, health care, sexual reproductive health questions, attitudes, norms, and perceived control, mental health, violence-related risk behaviors, and social media preferences. RESULTS:Social media advertisements on the Black Male Opinion survey reached approximately 146,412 individuals. Our primary finding of the web-based survey engagement was that referral (eg, group chat, indirect social media sharing) led to as the greatest proportion of recruitment, with Twitter and YouTube as the preferred sites to receive sexual health information. CONCLUSIONS:Recognizing the variety of technologies being used among Black male young adults and adolescents can help the community, researchers, and health care providers understand the web-based engagement of this high-risk population. This information may also promote culturally sensitive, customized marketing on sexual health information for this population.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Public health organizations have begun to use social media to increase awareness of health harm and positively improve health behavior. Little is known about effective strategies to disseminate health education messages digitally and ultimately achieve optimal audience engagement.<h4>Objective</h4>This study aims to assess the difference in audience engagement with identical antismoking health messages on three social media sites (Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram) and with a referring link to a tobacco prevention website cited in these messages. We hypothesized that health messages might not receive the same user engagement on these media, although these messages were identical and distributed at the same time.<h4>Methods</h4>We measured the effect of health promotion messages on the risk of smoking among users of three social media sites (Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram) and disseminated 1275 health messages between April 19 and July 12, 2017 (85 days). The identical messages were distributed at the same time and as organic (unpaid) and advertised (paid) messages, each including a link to an educational website with more information about the topic. Outcome measures included message engagement (ie, the click-through rate [CTR] of the social media messages) and educational website engagement (ie, the CTR on the educational website [wCTR]). To analyze the data and model relationships, we used mixed effects negative binomial regression, z-statistic, and the Hosmer-Lemeshow goodness-of-fit test.<h4>Results</h4>Comparisons between social media sites showed that CTRs for identical antitobacco health messages differed significantly across social media (P<.001 for all). Instagram showed the statistically significant highest overall mean message engagement (CTR=0.0037; 95% CI 0.0032-0.0042), followed by Facebook (CTR=0.0026; 95% CI 0.0022-0.0030) and Twitter (CTR=0.0015; 95% CI 0.0013-0.0017). Facebook showed the highest as well as the lowest CTR for any individual message. However, the message CTR is not indicative of user engagement with the educational website content. Pairwise comparisons of the social media sites differed with respect to the wCTR (P<.001 for all). Messages on Twitter showed the lowest CTR, but they resulted in the highest level of website engagement (wCTR=0.6308; 95% CI 0.5640-0.6975), followed by Facebook (wCTR=0.2213; 95% CI 0.1932-0.2495) and Instagram (wCTR=0.0334; 95% CI 0.0230-0.0438). We found a statistically significant higher CTR for organic (unpaid) messages (CTR=0.0074; 95% CI 0.0047-0.0100) compared with paid advertisements (CTR=0.0022; 95% CI 0.0017-0.0027; P<.001 and P<.001, respectively).<h4>Conclusions</h4>Our study provides evidence-based insights to guide the design of health promotion efforts on social media. Future studies should examine the platform-specific impact of psycholinguistic message variations on user engagement, include newer sites such as Snapchat and TikTok, and study the correlation between web-based behavior and real-world health behavior change. The need is urgent in light of increased health-related marketing and misinformation on social media.
Project description:New dissemination methods are needed to engage physicians in evidence-based continuing medical education (CME).To examine the effectiveness of social media in engaging physicians in non-industry-sponsored CME.We tested the effect of different media platforms (e-mail, Facebook, paid Facebook and Twitter), CME topics, and different "hooks" (e.g., Q&A, clinical pearl and best evidence) on driving clicks to a landing site featuring non-industry sponsored CME. We modelled the effects of social media platform, CME topic, and hook using negative binomial regression on clicks to a single landing site. We used clicks to landing site adjusted for exposure and message number to calculate rate ratios. To understand how physicians interact with CME content on social media, we also conducted interviews with 10 physicians.The National Physicians Alliance (NPA) membership.NPA e-mail recipients, Facebook followers and friends, and Twitter followers.Clicks to the NPA's CME landing site.On average, 4,544 recipients received each message. Messages generated a total of 592 clicks to the landing site, for a rate of 5.4 clicks per 1000 recipients exposed. There were 5.4 clicks from e-mail, 11.9 clicks from Facebook, 5.5 clicks from paid Facebook, and 6.9 clicks from Twitter to the landing site for 1000 physicians exposed to each of 4 selected CME modules. A Facebook post generated 2.3x as many clicks to the landing site as did an e-mail after controlling for participant exposure, hook type and CME topic (p<0.001). Twitter posts (p = 0.13) and paid Facebook posts (p = 0.06) were not statistically different from e-mail in generating clicks to the landing site. Use of different hooks to engage physicians had no impact on clicks to the landing site. Interviews with physicians suggested that social media might not be a preferred vehicle for disseminating CME.Social media has a modest impact on driving traffic to evidence-based CME options. Facebook had a superior effect on driving physician web traffic to evidence-based CME compared to other social media platforms and email.