At WHISE, our commitment to advancing gender equality, preventing violence against women, ensuring access to sexual and reproductive health, and promoting mental health and wellbeing for women and girls extends beyond the work we do on the ground. It is equally essential to effectively communicate our mission, initiatives, and impact across the region. Our dedicated Communications Team play an important role in bridging the gap between our programs and the wider community.
In 2022-2023 the Communications Team have worked across all portfolios on a myriad of projects.
Key projects include:
- Event management and marketing for the Better Together WHISE Conference to be held in August 2023
- Set up of standalone website for the Better Together WHISE Conference
- Collaboration in design and printing of the WHS Network 2023 Victorian Budget Report Card
- Production and dissemination of video material for projects such as the promotion of the Feminist Friendship Group and two information videos for the Menopause Working Group
- Building specific sub branding for WHISE’s Gender Equality portfolio of work
- Reviewing and updating WHISE’s Social Media Strategy
Women's Health Service (WHS) Network Activity
The Communications Team have provided significant support to the Women's Health Services Network by:
- Assisting in development of the Women’s Health Services Network website
- Supporting the HER Centre Campaign
- Designing the Victorian Budget 2023 Social Media Strategy and Campaign in collaboration with the WHS Advocacy Working Group to distribute across the Network
- Reviewing and editing case studies of the WHS Network to use as part of the advocacy campaign and, to upload onto the forthcoming WHS Network website
- Designing specific branding for the WHS to use in shared collateral and messaging
The Women's Spirit Project
WHISE is a proud partner of the Women's Spirit Project (WSP) - a grassroots, volunteer-led initiative which aims to inspire and empower women experiencing disadvantage and trauma to transform their lives through fitness, health and wellbeing activities. WHISE's partnership with WSP includes volunteering to support the organisation's governance, being involved in the organisation's events and supporting the social media activities of the organisation.
WSP shares an aligned mission and vision for women's health and wellbeing and its unique position as providing supported capacity building for women in the region – particularly women experiencing disadvantage – in outdoor recreation, wellness and fitness, as well as centring the lived experience of women in the local area, is vital work.
Social Media Activity and Impact
A brief overview of WHISE’s social media presence, including the platforms we’re on, the number of followers, and any significant growth or changes over the past year.
Throughout FY22-23, WHISE was present on the following social media platforms:
LinkedIn had the most significant growth, eventually becoming our most followed platform.
Throughout FY22-23, WHISE reduced its use of Twitter due to shifts in the platforms direction and in preparation for shifting focus to Instagram in FY23-24.
On 1 July 2022, our follower counts on each platform:
- Facebook – 1,429 Followers
- Twitter – 1,147 Followers
- LinkedIn – 1, 032 Followers
- YouTube – 15 Subscribers
On 30 June 2023, our follower counts on each platform:
- Facebook – 1,605 Followers (+12%)
- Twitter – 1,167 Followers (+2%)
- LinkedIn – 1,675 Followers (+62%)
- YouTube – 32 Subscribers (+113%)
Facebook – 217
Twitter – 184
LinkedIn – 181
Facebook – 37,747
Twitter – 23, 404
LinkedIn – 77,475
Average Post Engagement
Facebook – 9.4%
LinkedIn – 8.0%
Twitter – 6.7%
The most dominant topic in our most well-received and interacted posts was abortion rights & healthcare. Considered a more controversial subject and hot topic in our community, this justifies its success on our platform. Despite potential conflict for this area, there is little recorded negative comments across our platforms.
The lead Facebook post, with 1154 impressions was a position vacant advertisement for the role of Manager Intersectional Gender Equity, followed by a post publicising Kerry Strickland’s involvement in ABC Catalyst episode, “The Truth About Menopause with Myf Warhurst.”
The above LinkedIn post was the most successful post on the platform, with 2,826 impressions.
This above tweet was the most successful post on the platform, with 1,035 Impressions .
Impactful Stories & Campaigns
During FY22-23, WHISE participated in several significant social media campaigns outlined below.
Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) Week is an awareness week each September to bring attention to sexual and reproductive health issues affecting women, trans men, non-binary and gender diverse people across Victoria. It is created in collaboration by the Women’s Health Services Network and it’s SRH Working Group.
The focus of SRH Week 2022 was to address any concerns within the Victorian community around the legality and availability of abortion in Victoria. It emphasised that the majority of Victorians support a person’s right to choose.
16 Days of Activism
The 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence is an annual international campaign that kicks off on 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and runs until 10 December, Human Rights Day.
In 2022, WHISE utilised resources from Respect Victoria and Women with Disabilities Victoria throughout the 16-day period. There was a significant focus on advocating for women with disabilities who experience family violence.
During the 2022 Campaign, WHISE also trialed producing in-house short form video relaying participation in the Walk Against Family Violence.
WHISE worked with other Women’s Health Services across Victoria to produce a social media campaign for #EndoMarch, with tiles and accompanying text for use on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
The campaign explores contributing factors behind the 6.5-year delay to diagnosis. There is an emphasis on the factor of medical misogyny, as an important gender equality and health equity issue as well as the complexity of symptom presentation, available diagnostic tools, and associated health implications.
VIC Budget Response
The Victorian Women’s Health Services Network created an advocacy campaign to distribute the WHSN’ evaluation of the Victorian Budget 2023. The campaign was timed to align with the lead up, delivery and reaction to the budget released on the 23 May 2023.
The budget campaign focused on the key asks from the budget:
- Promotes primary prevention and health promotion for all Victorians.
- Delivers to all women and girls in Victoria, access to safe and high quality sexual and reproductive health services, including abortion healthcare, across the life course.
- Delivers investment in culturally safe, gender equitable mental healthcare and investment in the primary prevention of mental illness for women and girls.
- Invests in health services and programs based on data and evidence to address a broad range of women’s health issues,
WHISE led the design and production of the campaign, guided by the WHSN Collaborative Advocacy Working Group.
Social Media Goals for the Year Ahead
For FY23-24, WHISE aims to expand its social media presence in line with current trends and the changing online environment. This focuses on launching an Instagram account and increasing our video content and other content touchpoints such as reels and stories.
Users across our platforms are shifting in their behaviour.
Online interactions are increasingly private – happening in private messages and groups rather than on public feeds. 70% of time spent on social media by Meta users is classed as “On the Go” - quick online scrolling during instances such as when people are between meetings or waiting in line. Our content needs to make similar shifts by compressing messages as much as possible, so they are accessible for those with limited time available.
As Meta deprioritises political or politicised content, it’s important WHISE focuses on encouraging engagement on our posts through the content itself. This can be done by utilising functions such as question boxes, polls, sharing behind the scenes and demonstrating our community work. Engaging in breaking news or hot topic discussions in a timely manner will also improve our online relevance. Considering the increasing shortened news cycle, responding to news and stories as they happen is more important than ever.
Overall, growing our reach and strength of our online community is a top focus which will be achieved by diversifying our media practices. WHISE aims to take advantage of the growing features of all social media platforms we are present on in order to do so.