COM0015 – Blog Post #2 – Strong and Weak Organizations

COM0015 – Blog post #2

I chose two big brands for discussion around successful social media strategies: Health Canada and McDonald’s (Canada).

Health Canada

Health Canada is a Government Department that provides Canadians with information on healthy living and healthy lifestyles.

HC-signature.jpg(Image courtesy of Health Canada)

The main objective of the department is to ensure that Canadians are provided with as much information as possible on healthy living. The mantra, if you will, is to have Canadians “stay connected and use the social media tools to share content and to access reliable and timely health and safety information when, where and how you need it.”

Health Canada understands that it needs to reach Canadians by way of technology that they have embraced. They have a great social media strategy, in that they are using multiple platforms to share messaging (and its interesting content!). On Facebook, they are using separate pages to reach different target audiences.

·        Healthy First Nations and Inuit FB page to reach this specific audience: – messaging and imagery is individual to the audience – relatable.

·        Healthy Canadians FB page: This page reaches out to a variety of audiences with varying messages: being active, healthy meal ideas (substitutes), product recalls, pregnancy and raising children (to name a few).

I believe that Health Canada is successful in social media, as they allow the user to use whatever platform they are comfortable with:

·        Recalls and Safety Alerts Mobile Application: messages about health and safety recalls are delivered right to the user’s phone.

·        Healthy Canadians Pinterest account: provides tips to help Canadians be healthy and safe.

·         Twitter: Health Canada uses their Twitter page for an array of messaging: product recalls, advisories and media releases. I think it’s a great idea to share their news releases on Twitter – the right platform, audience, for non-traditional news.

·         YouTube: Visitors can pick up Health Canada’s PSAs and television ads on the HC YouTube pages.

Health Canada provides users with many opportunities to “share” their content. I believe this is a brilliant strategy – if people are interested and like the content, they have an opportunity to be ambassadors of the messaging. Health Canada uses the following platforms for “sharing”: email the page, share on Twitter/Facebook/Delicious/Digg/Google Bookmarks/StumbleUpon, MySpace, reddit.

(* I should also note that HC prepares a call out to other government departments for content.)


McDonald’s has launched a program called Our Food, Your Questions program allowing individuals to ask food-specific questions (other questions are directed elsewhere).


(Image courtesy of McDonald’s Canada:

To ask a question, participants must connect with either Facebook or Twitter – social visibility and viral effect. If your question has already been asked and an answer has been provided, you can see the responses right on the webpage.

Given the craze on healthy/nutritional eating, McDonald’s is nipping rumours in the bud; they are answering questions/addressing issues of inquiring minds.

And, if McDonald’s are providing answers on social media, they must be true!?

McDonald’s uses Facebook and Twitter as their main social media tools.

What other organizations do you think have excellent social media strategies in place?

And which organization needs a little help?

The Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry need a social media strategy. Currently, they have a website, but no social media presence.


(Image courtesy of: The Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry –

The Counties of SD&G should be using Facebook and Twitter to relay messages to citizens – suggest that they should participate (follow, share, like, retweet) with other like organizations (i.e. City of Cornwall, Township of South Glengarry). They should also include “follow us” messaging on all media releases, publications, newsletters and their website. Perhaps they should also include this information on their bricks and mortar location.

Objectives could include informing local citizens about finding business listings, libraries, development applications, etc.

As mentioned above, I would suggest that they start with the traditional social media channels – Facebook and Twitter. Also, they should consider making videos about successes and starting a YouTube channel. LinkedIn would be a good source for capturing local professionals.

What other organizations do you think could stand to embark in the social media realm?


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