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5 Examples of Successful Health Care Companies on Instagram

The healthcare industry has gone digital and it’s not going back. So it makes sense that healthcare marketing has gone digital as well, with hospitals, pharmaceutical companies and individual healthcare providers turning to social media to boost their brands. According to a Pew Research study, 80% of social media users are looking for health information, and nearly half are searching for information about a specific doctor or health professional.

To be successful, a social media marketing campaign must be personal, memorable, and relevant to the specific audience, so choosing your channel is important as choosing your campaign. If your social strategy doesn’t include Instagram, then you may be missing out.


Why IG is the place to be

  • Instagram is visual — a key component in reaching users who are scrolling through multiple posts and pages of content.
  • Instagram is engaging — with typically higher rates of audience engagement than Facebook or Twitter.
  • Instagram is personal — it’s the ideal platform to humanize your brand and to develop more personal relationships with your followers.
  • Instagram is young — if you want to reach the millennial market, then IG is definitely the place to be, with a much younger user demographic than Facebook or Twitter.

Insta inspiration

Not sure where to start? Get inspired by these five Instagram healthcare campaigns which set the standard for social media marketing success:

1. #MelanomaLikesMe

Melanoma is a serious risk in a sun-drenched, beach-loving country like Australia. In effort to raise awareness of the risks of sun exposure, the Australian Melanoma Patients’ Association developed a unique Instagram strategy. Rather than filling their feed with statistics, gruesome pics of tumours, or personal stories from patients, they created an IG user called @_melanoma, an account which interacted with other accounts just like a real person would, by liking, commenting and sharing. An algorithm helped them identify photos of fun in the sun, and they tracked hashtags like #sunshine, #beach, #pool, #etc. The @melanoma account liked and followed accounts identified this way, and posted personal comments from the deadly disease on their photos, such as “I love knowing you haven’t put on any sunscreen,” with the hashtag #melanomalikesme. A bio link led users to a page full of helpful information and tips on preventing skin cancers, including melanoma.

2. #ActuallySheCan

Created by pharma giant Allergan, the #ActuallySheCan campaign was designed to empower young women and encourage them to share information with one another about women’s healthcare issues. Powerful visual posts on their dedicated Instagram account are hashtagged #ActuallySheCan and paired with short, pithy messages that direct users to a bio link for detailed wellness tips and health information. This campaign succeeds precisely because it isn’t trying to sell a product; rather it’s promoting a sense of belonging to a community.

3. #HeroinesofHealth

When GE developed its 30-minute documentary Heroines of Health – the stories of three women in India, Africa, and Southeast Asia working to improve healthcare in their communities – it created a ground-breaking social strategy to promote the film’s release. Rather than hosting a traditional movie premiere, GE turned to Instagram, creating a dedicated account @heroinesofhealthfilm and releasing the video there in 1-minute segments over the course of 30 days.

4. #WeDareYou

United Healthcare came up with a daring social media campaign to promote its brand and encourage its audience to live more active, healthier lives. The campaigned dared people to make a specific small change to improve their health, such as committing to 30 minutes of daily activity or eating more fruits and vegetables. Participants were encouraged to post photos of themselves on IG completing the challenges, tag United Healthcare and hashtag their posts #WeDareYou to enter monthly contests — a great tactic to encourage return visits and boost engagement.

5. #BreatheBoldly

In honour of the iconic Star Trek actor Leonard Nimoy, who died of COPD, the COPD Foundation and Philips Healthcare wanted to boldly go where no company had gone before, launching its #BreatheBoldly influencer marketing campaign in 2016. COPD makes even everyday activities difficult; sufferers often feel like they are breathing through a straw. The campaign challenged followers to post a selfie or a short video of themselves on social media performing one of their favorite activities while breathing through a straw to show their support for those living with COPD. Celebrity influencers including Whoopi Goldberg , Will Wheaton and Vince Vaughn took on the challenge, helping to promote the campaign and increase its reach.