Evaluating an Instagram intervention promoting seat belt use

Publication Date


Document Type


Publication Title

American Public Health Association Annual Meeting & Expo

Conference Location

Denver, CO


Introduction: Despite an increase in health promotion interventions conducted on social media, there is still limited understanding about what an audience likes to see. Evaluating an intervention using Instagram to promote seat belt use, this study aims to investigate the relationship between social behavioral and communication characteristics of posts and audience's responses. Methods: Content analysis was conducted with the unit of analysis as one post on Instagram account “buckleup4life.” A coding scheme based on the Health Belief Model, Social Ecological Model, and Elaboration Likelihood Model was developed to analyze social behavioral and communication characteristics. Each component, including photo, text, and caption, of each post was coded yes or no for each characteristic. Forty nine posts were pilot coded to test Inter-coder reliabilities. Disagreements were reconciled and coding scheme was revised. A final coding of 198 posts on Instagram within a one-year time frame between September 2014 and September 2015 was conducted to avoid seasonal bias. The associations between number of likes and characteristics were analyzed on SPSS. Results: Photos that were coded as fun, addressing social interactions, emotions, ego satisfaction, with cartoon characters, public services, or selfie/personal content were more likely to receive “likes.” Texts that were coded as fun, addressing social interactions, ego-satisfaction, or community/organizational level factors were more likely to receive “likes.” Captions that mentioned social interactions, ego satisfaction and community/organizational factors were more likely to receive “likes.” Conclusion: Future interventions on Instagram should include the characteristics of the posts that received more likes from the audience.


Social Media, Violence & Injury Prevention


Public Health and Recreation