Engaging disability communities via social media – Ottobock Healthcare

Twitter and Facebook used to extend company dialogue into social spheres with more authentic voice and to help underpin core brand values of ‘emotional’ and ‘caring’.

Media Safari helped Ottobock, a world-leading supplier of products for people with restricted mobility, to develop and manage the company’s social media profiles on Twitter and Facebook. The aim was to use these key social media tools to communicate with two distinct spheres of influence.

From research Twitter was deemed most effective to communicate with trade and professional audiences (e.g. charities, disability institutions, consumer media and prosthetic & orthotic practitioners), while Facebook was to be used for engaging end users and support communities. It was anticipated social media would give Ottobock in the UK a local voice, enable the company to reach new and existing audiences via a responsive, conversational online medium and help to underpin the company’s core brand values as ‘emotional’ and ‘caring’. Social media would also complement the PR activities already undertaken by Media Safari.

Ottobock’s Twitter profile was launched in March 2011 and its Facebook page in August 2011.

Campaign objectives

  • To raise Ottobock’s online profile and establish a ‘voice’ for the UK arm via social media channels
  • To stimulate debate with new/existing customers around important disability issues
  • To engage and build closer relationships with trade and institutional bodies via social media channels
  • To support Ottobock’s core brand values as responsive, emotional and caring
  • To position the company as a valuable source of information, support and advice

Social media strategy
The success of this social media campaign rested on providing valuable insight into a range of, at times, complex issues and products. Media Safari also recognised that social media channels can be a first point of call for customer services, enquiries as well as frustrations or complaints.

Media Safari’s social media strategy was built on a foundation of strong content, information and support about products and issues. We used the experience of a wide group of experts within Ottobock including customer services managers, prosthetists, orthotists, technicians, product development and product managers to support our efforts.

This was also enhanced by Media Safari’s knowledge of the disability landscape that was regularly updated by daily monitoring of websites and social media channels. We would then tweet/post relevant stories and commentary around topical industry events. Press releases, case studies and customer/case study video testimonials supplemented this content to provide engaging platforms.

Results [June’11–Sept’12]

  • @OttobockUK Twitter followers more than quadrupled from 368 to 1591
  • Ottobock’s Facebook page (Facebook.com/OttobockUK) increased ‘Likes’ from 75 to over 580
  • Posts on the Ottobock UK Facebook page have enjoyed a significant increase in engagement; ‘reads’ since the start of 2012 have risen from 548 people in January to 14,632 people by the end of August
  • The number of people interacting with posts on the Ottobock UK Facebook page has increased since the start of 2012 from 39 in January to 135 in May’12
  • According to Klout.com (social media analysis), Ottobock’s true reach of followers was 525 in May, showing very high interaction through ‘retweets’ and ‘@mentions’ with over 47% of the account’s 1,111 tweets generating interactivity
  • @Ottobock’s peak Klout score (rated out of 100) increased from 33.82 in October 2011 to 55.28 in September 2012

 

To understand how to set digital objectives and achieve ROI view our recent blog post.

 

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