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Social media and social marketing offer innovative ways to meet youth where they already are - online. In this section, you will find tools and resources to create or enhance your social media and/or social marketing strategy to engage youth on HIV prevention and risk.

Social media tools are online communities that give you opportunities to connect with people around the world using photos, videos, blogs, online events, and direct messaging. The most popular social media tools include Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter; Periscope is one of the newer ones.

Social marketing develops and integrates marketing concepts with other approaches to influence behaviors that benefit individuals and communities for the greater social good. In public health, many social marketing campaigns include a specific behavior change component.

Advantages of Using Social Media and Social Marketing

  • Allows you to reach those you want to engage in conversation: youth
  • Almost all youth use the internet, and the majority of them access the web via a mobile device and communicate using social media apps
  • Many social media tools are free
  • You can use multiple media channels to reach and saturate a target audience, bringing about behavior change
Testimonial Headshot
I've noticed that the kids love Instagram. You just take a picture, put a few words, and you send it off."

Irwin - Washington, DC

Challenges of Using Social Media and Social Marketing

  • It is common for organizations to decide they need to use social media and social marketing before developing a strategy for how they plan to use them and if they are selecting the right channel(s) to deliver their message.
  • There are so many social media tools to choose from, how do you know which one to use? Learn more from our Social Media Strategies.
  • Social marketing involves using social media in combination with traditional media and outreach strategies. Learn more from our Strategies for Social Marketing Campaigns.

The pages in this section provide practical tools, resources, and strategies for how to use social media and develop social marketing campaigns for youth HIV prevention and treatment.

Page last updated: August 2017