142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition

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Using Infographics to Promote Behavior Change and Long-Term Wellness for Military and Civilian Populations: Small Steps to a Healthier You

142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition (November 15 - November 19, 2014): http://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/annual
Monday, November 17, 2014 : 11:00 AM - 11:30 AM

Jill Herzog , Booz Allen Hamilton, Rockville, MD
Dana Stirk , Booz Allen Hamilton, McLean, VA
Colleen Gray , Booz Allen Hamilton, McLean, VA
Barbara Blue , Booz Allen Hamilton, McLean, VA
Erin Rooney , Booz Allen Hamilton, McLean, VA
Every year, millions of people make resolutions to lose weight, eat healthier, or be happier. Unfortunately, the majority of resolutions fail. Behavior change is hard. But much of the science suggests that the key to setting resolutions that stick is to start small and can be built upon over time.

The Small Steps to a Healthier You Challenge (www.guardyourhealth.com/smallsteps) was designed as the anti-behavior change campaign. Rather than setting lofty goals (e.g., quit smoking, stop binge drinking), the Challenge focused on setting small, easily achievable daily goals to get Soldiers, their families, and civilian communities over the first, and biggest, hurdle to behavior change: getting started.

The Challenge was executed using an integrated digital strategy that spanned across social media channels, SMS, email, and a responsive website. To complement the Challenge, the team created 24 customized Small Steps graphics and four Small Steps infographics, including “10 Simple Steps To Look and Feel Better” to motivate audiences to complete the daily health challenges.

Through the 28-day Challenge, more than 1200 participated and the “10 Simple Steps” infographic was the top performing Small Steps material, with more than 1,000 views since 20 February. The mini-campaign also received positive feedback through social media and email. Such anecdotal evidence lends credibility to the idea of a small steps approach to behavior change. Future behavior change campaigns could benefit from taking a small steps approach, and structuring their campaigns as long-term programs that support individuals in achieving successive approximations of the larger, desired end behavior.

Learning Areas:

Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Communication and informatics
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related education

Learning Objectives:
Discuss best practices for communicating positive aspects of health promotion, and exemplify various, successful creative concepts and infographics that resonate with service members and their families. Identify how to effectively collaborate and partner with organizations across various sectors to share creative concepts developed in the context of a larger, integrated strategic communications program. Identify a variety of successful communications tools and technologies for their organizations, and how to show measurable impact and interconnectivity among various communication tactics used in behavior change campaigns.

Keyword(s): Social Marketing, Behavioral Research

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am an award-winning communications professional with 20 years of experience directing multi-year social marketing and health communication projects for government and corporate clients. I have developed several national public education campaigns reaching millions of Americans about many of the nationís leading social and health issues including substance abuse prevention, mental health treatment and disease prevention.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.