Touchstone Health Medicare HMO Uses Social Media To Reach Seniors

Touchstone Health HMO, a Medicare Advantage health plan in New York, has launched a social media marketing campaign. Touchstone Health is utilizing online social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to communicate with baby boomers and senior citizens. For more information about Touchstone Health's Medicare Advantage plans, please visit

Online PR News – 19-January-2010 – – New York, NY, January 19, 2010: When it comes to reaching audiences 65 and older, the conventional thinking is to use traditional means of communication – television, newspapers, magazines and radio.

Touchstone Health, a Medicare Advantage health plan in New York, however, is communicating to seniors in ways that might be expected if they wanted to reach their target audience’s grandchildren – Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, online networks and blogs.

“We believe that by using social mediums, in addition to traditional media, we will be able to deliver our message in real time and in an easily accessible environment to seniors who are more likely than ever before to go online for their information and take advantage of many of the same online activities that dominate other age segments,” said Steve Calabrese, Touchstone Health’s Chief Marketing Officer. “Our members, after all, are active people, who travel, volunteer, launch second careers and, yes, use social media and the Internet.”

Touchstone Health – which offers Medicare Advantage plans that tend to include broader benefits, such as care management programs and prescription drug, dental and vision coverage, as an alternative to original Medicare – recently embarked on a proactive social media marketing campaign with the help of Remarkable Search, a full service online marketing and creative services firm.

“Senior citizens and baby boomers are two of the Internet’s fastest growing segments and statistics show further engagement and communication within social communities,” said Jason Selss, Communications Director at Remarkable Search. “Seniors, like other online networkers, utilize high-visibility social outlets to learn, interact and share information. Our goal, by integrating social network marketing strategies coupled with search engine optimization, is to expand the online presence of Touchstone Health, drive targeted traffic to their revamped website and generate new business.”

In addition to interacting with this demographic and those seeking Medicare information, Touchstone Health HMO is looking to network and open dialogue with industry experts, their Medicare health insurance partners and other organizations working to improve the quality of senior living, personal health care and Medicare coverage and Medicare advantage programs.

A Change in Online Usage

Recent data backs up the viability of Touchstone Health’s decision to reach seniors online and through social media sites. In the last five years, according to The Nielsen Company, the number of seniors actively using the Internet has increased by more than 55 percent to 17 million. In addition, the average amount of time they spend online has increased by 11 percent during this time to over 58 hours a month (or nearly two hours daily). A Nielsen study also shows that seniors are engaged in many of the same activities that dominate other age segments – email, photo sharing, social networking, checking the latest news and weather, and searching for information on health and financial concerns and travel.

Furthermore, it has been shown that 8.2 percent of all social network and blog visitors are over 65, just 0.1 percentage points less than the number of teenagers who frequent these sites.

While Google Search is the most popular online destination for seniors, Facebook and YouTube rank three and four, respectively. Facebook, which was ranked No. 45 a year ago among sites visited by senior citizens, now has 7.9 million unique visitors among this segment, while YouTube has 7.6 million.

To join the Touchstone Health Facebook Group Page, please click here:
To subscribe to the Touchstone Health YouTube Channel, please click here:
To follow Touchstone Health on Twitter, please click here:

About Touchstone Health
Touchstone Health currently has more than 14,000 Medicare beneficiaries in New York City and in Westchester, Orange, Broome, Chenango, Delaware and Onondaga counties. Touchstone Health was founded in 1998 by a group of neighborhood physicians to bring personalized health care to New York. Visit for more information or contact a Touchstone Health representative 24/7 at 1.877.867.5750, TTY users: 1.888.777.0368.