41% of Americans maintain an active Facebook profile

Did you know that 7% of Americans actively use the microblogging website Twitter and 41% maintain an active Facebook profile?1 According to Nielsen Media Research, interest in social media continues to grow. Currently, Facebook remains among the top 10 most-visited sites in the United States, but Twitter earns the title of fastest-growing social media site. PHMC and a number of its affiliates use Twitter and Facebook to share information about the latest trends in public health, events and more with social media savvy consumers. Public Health Directions profiled some of our social media stars to learn more about their use.

Public Health Management Corporation

  • Account Manager: Kishwer Vikaas, Copywriter and Social Media Coordinator
  • Created: Fall 2009
  • Facebook URL:
  • Facebook Fans: 300+
  • Twitter:
  • Twitter Followers: 700+
  • Audience: Fellow public health institutes, public health students and faculty, program clients, funders and more.
  • Purpose: Spread the word about PHMC and affiliate programs and events; network with other nonprofits that share our mission.
  • Social Media Tips: “Always check whether nonprofits you are working with already have a social media presence online,” says Vikaas. “Connecting with them on the web helps to reinforce your relationship.”

Students Run Philly Style

  • Account Managers: Heather McDanel, Executive Director; Amalia Petherbridge, Youth Coordinator
  • Created: Fall 2007
  • Facebook URL:
  • Fans: 1,300+
  • Audience: Potential and existing participants and supporters. In addition, many of the program’s volunteers have started pages for the schools with which they work.
  • Purpose: Promote events, such as happy hours for fundraising. Volunteer mentors also use the pages they have created to communicate with youth about practices and get them pumped for their runs.
  • Social Media Tips: “You have to make updating your social media a priority,” says Petherbridge. “Unlike a grant proposal or project, social media do not necessarily have deadlines. It’s easy to let it go and not think about it. But if you do commit to it, it can bring a lot of rewards.”

Health Promotion Council

  • Account Manager: Scott Booker, Administrative Assistant
  • Created: Spring 2011
  • Facebook URL:
  • Fans: 100+
  • Audience: A wide audience including funders, partners, program participants, board members and staff.
  • Purpose: Provide instant health information at a low cost and continually stay in touch with program participants, raising the visibility of the organization.
  • Social Media Tips: “Use social media as an advocacy tool and fundraising strategy,” suggests executive director Vanessa Briggs. “Social media are great because it can get more staff involved in marketing programs and services.”

Resources for Children’s Health

  • Account Manager: Jeanne Ciocca, Executive Director
  • Created: Summer 2009
  • Facebook URL:
  • Fans: 100+
  • Twitter:
  • Twitter Followers: 10+
  • Audience: People who may not be in social services or health care, and therefore may not come in contact with RCH, its staff or its programs. People who may be interested in the work of RCH, such as parents and community members, but who are not necessarily service providers.
  • Purpose: Share information and stories that introduce people to the issues we address as a program.
  • Social Media Tips: “Using social media is easy!  But start slowly and gradually introduce services as staff time allows,” advises Ciocca.  “RCH, for example, doesn’t have a person dedicated to blogging or a large amount of time for media outreach, so we started small with the Facebook and Twitter pages.”

National Nursing Centers Consortium

  • Account Manager: Jamie Ware, Policy Director
  • Created: Summer 2009
  • Facebook URL:
  • Fans: 100+
  • Twitter:
  • Followers: 1,000+
  • Audience: Nurse practitioners, nursing students and other people supportive of the nurse model.
  • Purpose: Cross-communicate and cross-pollinate ideas, and expand people’s knowledge base on policies and practice in a way that affects their work. For instance, through Facebook a clinic in Indiana can learn something helpful from the work of a clinic in Washington.
  • Social Media Tips: “Be thoughtful about what you post and share. I like to keep the page as active as possible,” says Ware. “I think it’s important people are able to find us at some point during the day.”

1 “Twitter Research in America: 2010.” Edison Research. 29 Apr 2010. Web. 29 June 2011.