The first year of Be in the KNOW
One year on since the launch of Be in the KNOW, we look back at key achievements and learnings from the first 12 months of Avert’s new digital brand
Be in the KNOW is a digital brand created by Avert, offering fresh, sex-positive content primarily for individuals in English-speaking countries across sub-Saharan Africa. Along with content for young people seeking advice for themselves, Be in the KNOW offers wrap-around content for the community health workers and primary practitioners that support them.
We launched the brand at the end of March 2022 – across web and social media. Since then, we have been working hard to establish the new brand and ensure it has real-world impact. We do this by ensuring information and resources reach the audience they were developed with and for as well as regularly evaluating whether the content is building, knowledge skills and confidence as it was designed to do and ultimately whether it is helping young people take charge of their sexual health.
In the first year of our new brand we have reached over 13.2 million people in sub-Saharan Africa through the Be in the KNOW website and social media channels. But as much as we love a big reach number – we know that deeper more meaningful engagement with content and platforms is vital to building up young people’s knowledge, skills and confidence so they are better able take care of their sexual health.
This is why Be in the KNOW was designed to encourage exploration on the website, social sharing and content that helps young people talk about the issues that really matter – whether that be online or in real life. To support this, Be in the KNOW offers multi-channel engagement – meaning user journeys that span social as well as website. This multi-channel approach under a unified brand means we offer a variety of ways to engage and can answer specific audience needs. All this leads to a deeper more meaningful engagement.
Our data shows that this has been working! We’ve had incredibly high engagement on social media -more than 2.2 million engagements (this includes comments, shares, saves, likes and link clicks).
We’ve also had plenty of engagement with our website. When developing the site our main focus was to find ways to encourage our user to explore and engage. We designed learning journeys to help guide our users through the site and build the knowledge and skills they need for their sexual health while following what sparks their interest.
We have been tracking user engagement closely and can see that in our first year more than 65% of sessions from sub-Saharan Africa are engaged and we’ve had more than 76,000 engagements across the website (this includes downloading a resource, sharing content on social media, watching 50% of a video or taking a quiz).
We focus on an iterative process of improvement – using data from the website and social media to meet our users’ needs. Building on the great base of insights, data and learning we already have from across all our digital projects.
We’re continuously listening (and responding) to our audience’s feedback to understand what they are finding useful/or not, what topics they want to learn more about and the questions they want answered. We also use search engine optimization techniques to monitor sexual health-related search terms and make sure our content is answering the queries real people have.
To ensure that all our content reflects the reality experienced by our target audiences and meets their needs we have also been working with in-country focal points. These focal points work in the HIV and sexual health sector in our target countries. They keep us up-to-date with what’s going on where they are – sharing new developments, emerging challenges and innovative solutions as well as the everyday concerns of the communities they work with. This helps to ensure our content is relevant and responsive to real needs.
“Amazing information on the STIs and cleared a lot of doubts that I had which has convinced me to go for testing.”
“It's giving me confidence that even though I'm positive, I can still live a healthy life.”
“It equip me on how to handle myself in relationship, to say no if I doesn't/yes if I do want to have sex.”
*from user surveys on www.beintheknow.org.
Be in the KNOW was built and continues to be developed with the people we are trying to reach at the centre to make sure we are providing the information they need to look after their (and their communities’) sexual health, in the most accessible and convenient way.
We are excited for the next year ahead, to continue to develop new content expanding our offer for both young people and those who support them while growing Be in the KNOW’s reach and impact. We continue to work closely and learn from our target audiences.
Like the sound of Be in the KNOW? Then share it with your networks and communities and help us make the circle bigger!
Photo credit: iStock/PeopleImages. Photos are used for illustrative purposes. They do not imply health status or behaviour.