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Office of Minority Health

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Resources and Tips

Let’s Talk Prevention Twitter Relay

On April 16, 2014 at 12pm ET, join experts from around the nation for the National Minority Health Month “Let’s Talk Prevention” Twitter relay. It is a conversation about the importance of prevention as a key health strategy and identifying key factors and tactics to promote prevention as a viable way to reduce health disparities and improve the nation’s health. Additionally, the relay will address and explore prevention at the individual, community, and system levels. Join the conversation by using #NMHM14Relay during the Twitter relay. Help us spread the word about prevention. It all starts at 12pm ET on April 16.

Social media is a great way to engage on the importance of prevention and garner support for your mission.  It enables you to communicate with your audience on an enhanced level.  It streamlines engagement by:

  • Allowing you to open up lines of communications with an audience that may not have been aware of your mission.
  • Providing real-time feedback on your communication efforts, giving you more flexibility and agility in your messaging.
  • Uncovering insights that you would not have access to prior to your engagement with your audience.

Before engaging on social media, it is important to develop a social media strategy.  This strategy will help guide you to accomplishing your engagement goals and objectives. A comprehensive social media strategy helps you manage expectations and define milestones that will become benchmarks for future engagement.  The strategy must be dynamic and scalable. After your strategy is finalized, then you can create your plan for execution.  Building your social media plan takes time and planning, but the return on investment makes it worthwhile.

10 Mistakes to Avoid On Social Media

Social media is an expansive universe that constantly changes. It can difficult to navigate at times, and mistakes are often made.  Below is a list of the 10 mistakes to avoid on social media.

  1. Over posting. Depending on the social media platform, be careful not to inundate your audience with messages. Overwhelming them may lead to them ignoring you moving forward.
  2. Overusing hashtags. A hashtag is very useful for indexing and promoting content, but if overused, it will make your content look cluttered and unprofessional. Limit your hashtag usage to 1-2 per post.
  3. Failing to know your audience. The key to successful social media engagement is understanding your audience. If you do not have a firm grasp on the things that matter to them, your engagement will be less effective. 
  4. Broadcasting instead of engaging with your audience.  Social media is predicated on engagement. Your purpose is to nurture a relationship with your audience.  If you are just broadcasting messages, you will not learn what resonates with your audience.
  5. Not responding to your audience. When your audience mentions you directly, it is important that you respond in kind.  Ignoring them could prove costly when trying to promote your mission.
  6. Posting without consistency.  Irregular posting is counterproductive to growing an audience. You must be committed to social media and post at a consistent frequency to build an audience and maintain engagement.
  7. Ignoring social listening.  Whether you are aware of it or not, you are being talked about on social media. The goal of social listening is to manage your reputation and learn more about your community.  It is a cornerstone to social media success.
  8. Not tailoring your message to each specific social media platform. You must adapt your social media posts to leverage the features of your intended social media platform. You must translate your messaging to the proper platform to elicit your desired response.
  9. Posting quantity over quality. It is not about posting as much as you can every day.  Social media is about posting content that is useful for your intended audience at the frequency they need it.
  10. Engaging without a strategy.  You must determine your overall goals and objectives for social media engagement. By mapping out your destination for success, you will be able to execute the steps that must be taken in order reach it.

Social Media and Prevention

Prevention is power. A commitment to prevention is also a commitment to a healthy lifestyle. A healthy lifestyle is the gift that keeps on giving.  It is important that we spread that message and mobilize to achieve health equity.

Please help us spread the word about the power of prevention.  Here is suggested content for Twitter and Facebook.

Twitter Content

Facebook Content

It’s Minority Health Month! How will you raise awareness about health equity & minority health? #NMHM14

It’s Minority Health Month! How will you raise awareness about health equity & minority health?


The theme of National Minority Health Month is “Prevention is Power: Taking Action for Health Equity.” This is a time for us to unite to improve the health of our communities and increase access to quality, affordable health care for everyone. Visit the Office of Minority Health website all month long for news, blogs, materials, tools and resources, and other information.

The NPA National Stakeholder Strategy aims to help minorities reach their full health potential. #NMHM14


The National Partnership for Action was established for grassroots engagement. Find your regional contact at #NMHM14

The Office of Minority Health established the National Partnership for Action to engage with communities at the grassroots level. With regional contacts around the country, find one near you

Want to know how to take action for health equity? Visit to become an NPA Partner #NMHM14.

Want to know how to take action for health equity? Visit to become an NPA Partner.

What actions are you taking for health equity for #NMHM14? Here are a list of events to help you plan your month.

There are events being held around the country with the goal of taking action for health equity. For a full list of events, visit

The #ACA specifically addresses the needs of minority population through an emphasis on prevention. #NMHM14

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, 10.2 million Latinos, 6.8 million African Americans, nearly 2 million Asian and Pacific Islanders, and over a half million American Indians and Alaska Native will have the opportunity to get health coverage.

According to the CDC, 1 out of 4 deaths from heart disease may be preventable. Help us take action #NMHM14

Heart disease is the leading killer across most racial and ethnic groups, and 1 out of 4 deaths from heart disease may be preventable. Visit to learn the facts and enhance your understanding of the importance of prevention.

April 8: Disparities Action Plan/National Stakeholder Strategy Anniversary
3 yrs ago today the HHS Disparities Action Plan was launched. See the efforts in action. #NMHM14

April 8: Disparities Action Plan/National Stakeholder Strategy Anniversary
Three years ago today, HHS Disparities Action Plan was launched. See the efforts in action.

HHS' Million Hearts Initiative aims to prevent 1 mil. heart attacks & strokes by 2017. Visit to learn more. #NMHM14

HHS launched the Million Hearts national initiative to reduce the prevalence of heart attacks and strokes. The primary goal of the initiative is to prevent one million heart attacks and strokes by 2017.

A culturally competent workforce is essential to reducing health disparities. Visit more information. #NMHM14

With the percentage of racial and ethnic minorities who speak a primary language other than English growing, the need for cultural competency is more important than ever. Enhanced National CLAS Standards aim to reduce health disparities through developing a culturally competent workforce.

Cost of care was a major barrier to receiving preventive care. #ACA eliminates that barrier by #NMHM14


Prevention holds the key to building healthier communities. Visit to learn how #ACA moves the nation forward. #NMHM14


Steps to Hosting a Twitter Chat

A Twitter chat is a public conversation conducted via Twitter on a specific topic.  A unique hashtag is associated with a Twitter chat to allow the audience to follow the discussion and participate in the chat.

Benefits of a Twitter chat include:

  • Growing your social media presence.  When you tweet as part of a Twitter chat, those tweets are retweeted by other Twitter handles and shared with their audience.  It spreads your message to a bigger audience, which will in attract new people to learn more about you.
  • Crowdsourcing feedback on a specific topic or idea. You are given the opportunity to ask questions to your community and the ability to collect their feedback in a matter of seconds.
  • Enhancing your community engagement.  A Twitter chat is a conversation between you and your community.  It is more of an exchange and no longer just broadcasting of a message.
  • Promoting your mission. Participating in a Twitter chat means you are providing your community with information about your mission and initiatives.  Building a relationship with them and garnering their support, as a result.

Here are the steps to hosting a Twitter chat:

  • Choose the topic of the chat- The topic of a Twitter chat must be timely and relevant to your audience.
  • Secure a date and time for the chat- Choose a date and time slot that works best for your target audience.
  • Choose a unique hashtag- In order for people to be able to follow the conversation, you will need to choose a hashtag that is not being used elsewhere on Twitter, and relevant to the topic of the chat.
  • Determine the format of the chat- A Twitter chat could be conducted in Q&A format, or through a free-flowing conversation.  Choose the format that best suits your objectives for hosting the chat.
  • Promote your chat- You will want to ensure that your event is promoted as much as possible. Create promotional tweets to share with your audience and partners.
  • Analyze your chat- When the chat concludes, measure your engagement and track the hashtag activity.  Use that data to refine your strategy and prepare you for the next chat.

What Goes On an Editorial Calendar

A social media editorial calendar creates a cohesive strategy for growing your audience and improving engagement. It streamlines productivity and alleviates the stress of choosing what to promote on social media.  It secures accountability, planning, and execution.
An editorial calendar should include:

  • Monthly goals. Whether you are looking to increase traffic to your website, or just want engagement at the post level, clearly define your goals for the month to keep track of progress.
  • The monthly social media theme. If there is a special event or milestone to honor, identify it, and adjust your tactics to comply with them.
  • Frequency. Determine the timing of your posting. If posting 2-3 times a day, or 2-3 times a week, stay consistent and make sure that the calendar reflects that drive for consistency.
  • Target Audiences for each post. A key to engagement is promoting targeted messaging to the appropriate audience for optimal response.
  • Social media vehicles.  You must choose the social media platforms that work best for your mission and create a content strategy that leverages their capabilities. Distinguish each piece of social media content by its appropriate social media platform.
  • Messaging. Craft your messages to comply with each social network. Refine copy as you get closer to posting.