Urology Reach on Social Media: Appealing to Future Potential Applicants
Objective On average, internet users aged 16 to 29 years spend 3 hours per day on social media platforms. Previous
research has identified social media as an important tool for prospective applicants in the age of virtual residency
interviews, but no study to date has included TikTok as a social media platform of interest. TikTok is the fastestgrowing
social network in the United States, and there were predictions it would reach 1.8 billion users by the end of
2022. This study seeks to understand the difference in reach of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok to inform
medical student engagement efforts.
Methods A binary (Yes/No) poll was posted on MCG Urology accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and
TikTok. The poll asked the question “Are you a medical student?” and was open for viewing and/or response on each
platform for 24 hours. The number of total views and the number and percentage of respondents were recorded for
each application. Engagement was determined by the percentage of viewers who responded to the poll.
Results A total of 3038 views and 839 responses were collected from all social media platforms. TikTok had the
highest number of views (1838) and responses (617) but low engagement (33.56%). The highest percentage of “Yes”
responses was on Twitter (61%); however, Twitter had the lowest engagement of 7.2%. Results of a chi-square test
showed that while the total raw number of medical students reached was highest on TikTok, of all those who engaged
with the poll, there were statistically significantly more medical students on Twitter (P < 0.0001).
Conclusions Medical student outreach can be successfully conducted through social media. Twitter allows for
engagement with a statistically significantly larger proportion of medical students, and TikTok allows access to a
grossly larger audience of medical students. Urology residency programs should consider the utility of both Twitter
and TikTok for student outreach.
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