With people spending so much more time at home because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the danger of over-using social media is real, even for people for whom health and wellness is a priority. Remember what Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba said: “Today’s customers want to be healthy and happy, no matter who they are.” He’s right. And for brands in the wellness industry, it’s particularly vital that your brand “walk the walk” to make sure you’re doing your part to promote digital wellness — for people to continue to trust you, and for your business to grow.
Create Health and Wellness-Focused Online Communities
We know by now that the decisions we make on a daily basis are heavily influenced by our social network, both online and offline. People who are focused on wellness want to connect with like-minded people, and by building a place for them to surround themselves with other wellness-focused individuals, you’re helping them in their own health and fitness goals. Consider Weight Watchers as an example. This study (and multiple ones after this one) found that Weight Watchers not only helped people lose twice as much weight as those simply following weight-loss advice but that the community helped people maintain a healthy lifestyle that helped keep that weight off. Having that support system provided motivation and promoted accountability for everyone in the group.
Create your own health and wellness-focused online community. Make it a safe place for people to share their goals and get motivated in their own wellness journey through sharing stories, fears, words of encouragement, and successful strategies people can apply in their daily lives.
Create a User Experience That Focuses on Digital Wellness
Last year, Senator Josh Hawley introduced the Social Media Addiction Reduction Technology (SMART) Act. The Act seeks to combat the addictive features of social media, making it illegal for social media companies to use features that reward repetitive or continued use such as infinite scroll, video autoplay, and badges rewarded for use. As a brand in the wellness industry, it’s your responsibility to make sure that your social media practices aren’t rewarding addictive behavior.
A great example of a wellness brand whose advertisements promote digital wellness is the Calm App. Has one of its 15-second ads crossed your feed in recent days? It’s almost impossible not to feel a modicum of calm as you gaze over a calm ocean, or listen to the soft rainfall in a lush rainforest. Also, by watching the whole 15-second video, you’re made to pause, and pause the scroll. This is a great example of a wellness brand promoting both its product and wellness through its advertising (remember the “world’s first Slow TV Ad?”) By creating ads that are calming and relaxing, Calm App promotes healthy social media practices even through its ads. That’s a powerful brand statement.
“I am an optimist about social media and use it every day to reach out to the world. I see it as a global nervous system glittering with activity. If social media allows someone to share their journey, either with their friends or the whole world, that is enough.” — Deepak Chopra
Don’t Feed into the FOMO
In a study from Harvard on the connection between social media use and mental well-being, researchers unsurprisingly found that users’ fear of missing out was a big determiner in if a person’s social media use was catalyzing unhealthy behavior. Oftentimes, people will stay up far too late at night, obsessively scrolling various platforms in the fear that if they’re not checking, they’ll miss out on something critical.
You can help promote social media wellness by sticking to a normal schedule for your posts, and even taking a break from posting on weekends or after-hours. Also, the strategic use of a brand newsletter that gives your audience a weekly or bi-weekly breakdown of happenings will discourage folks from excessively checking into your channels to see what they might have missed.