Device maker tries its hand in the Facebook app arena

Device maker tries its hand in the  Facebook app arena
Device maker tries its hand in the Facebook app arena

Diabetes tech firm Med­tronic rolled out a Facebook strategy to help diabetes patients share milestones.

The effort, Let's Build Our Timeline Together, builds on the company's Facebook presence. The page, which had almost 37,000 likes as of July 18, draws from photos visitors upload, and includes mini-bios of diabetes patients. The result weaves specific moments—like a six-year-old's day at the zoo—with information like “Avoid potential exposure to strong magnetic fields on roller coasters, remove your insulin pump and put it in a safe place.”

Amanda Sheldon, director of PR and social communication at the diabetes business unit of Medtronic, told MM&M that the “patient stories” part evolved because patients pounced at the chance to connect.

“Our community really loves to share their stories and their photos and what is going on in their lives, and they started this from the day we launched our page,” she said.

Medtronic posts 1-2 items per day, and the page blends such other elements of its social outreach as YouTube, Twitter and a blog into one space, but with a personal touch. Patients may visit the Twitter feed for customer service and support information or YouTube for helpful videos, but the Facebook touchpoint embraces a greater variety of tonality and information.

Sheldon noted that the page also makes the company's history about more than insulin pumps, focusing on the ability of patients “to live full lives, healthy lives.”