Public health campaigns can use social media platforms or other traditional means of disseminating health campaign information. What matters most is the appropriateness of the communication tools and their suitability in the targeted audiences. Although social media platforms are increasingly becoming the most reliable and relevant communication tools for disseminating public health information, poverty, low levels of technological literacy, and inaccessibility of the technological devices, may force the public health campaigners to adopt traditional communication tools. Televisions and public service announcements are traditional tools that are still reliable.
Nowadays, modern technologies determine the effectiveness of a communication. Social media such as Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, and Google+, are some of the popular platforms that a public health campaign can use to disseminate information (Agha, 2010). However, in the dissemination of information, different technologies and social media platforms, match people of different age groups and different social groups. In a planned public health campaign, each communication technology must be able to meet the requirements of the targeted audience (Wakefield, Loken, & Hornik, 2010). This section of the report on the public health campaign about STDs among the youth discusses the dissemination of information using other communication tools other than social media.
Instances Where Other Communication Tools May Deem Appropriate
Lack of technological devices– Social media requires people to possess mdern technological devices. Information dissemination through social media, highly relies on the availability and accessibility of the new technologies (Marcell & Halpern-Felsher, 2007). In the areas where the technological devices are scarce, campaigners may prefer to use televisions and other old forms of media. Low levels of technological literacy– People must be conversant with the devices that support social media communications. Parker and Thorson (2009) state that low familiarity with new technologies may force campaigners to use other communication tools. Poverty– Modern phones and computers that support social media communication are expensive. In the poverty-stricken areas, public health campaigners may prefer other communication tools.
Other potential Communication Tools in the STDs Campaign
Other than the social media, televisions and the public service announcements are some of the old, but active communication tools (Frieden & Bloomberg, 2007). In a youth STDs campaign, these two communication platforms are still influential and reliable among the youth population. Reason for using the TVs– Several youths still rely on the broadcasted information, which nowadays comes from enhanced digital broadcasting systems. Other than the televisions, public service announcements can also be effective in a youth STDs campaign (Eytan, Benabio, Golla, Parikh, & Stein, 2011). Reason for Using the Public Service Announcements– Public service announcements often occur in the busy streets and towns, where millions of youths regularly converge and walk around.
One Challenge of Using Other Communication Tools
Televisions and the public service announcements are effective communication tools, but have one similar challenge. More frequently, the two tools of disseminating information generalize the information and serve the entire public. According to Reber, Paek, and Lariscy (2013), confining the information specifically meant for the youth population may be difficult because these two communication tools have no limits in their public announcing capabilities. Solutions: For the television announcements, the campaign will run during the favorite youth TV programs. For the public service announcements, the campaign will limit its scope to the youth population through visiting designated areas.
Dissemination of a public health campaign is a tricky engagement that requires an understanding of various communication tools and how they apply to the desired population. Social media can be effective in some instances, but other traditional communication platforms can be superior in other instances. Televisions and the public service announcements can be appropriate where people have low levels of technological literacy, can barely the technological devices, or are just poor and cannot afford the expenses of these new technologies.
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