Social media focus: Prostate Cancer Awareness Month 2018

Nov 9, 2018
Social media focus: Prostate Cancer Awareness Month 2018

Social media lit up with more than 2,000 mentions of Prostate Cancer Awareness Month (PCAM) in September.

Charities, clinicians and patients came together to raise awareness of the condition, which kills almost 30,000 men in America every year.1

We delve into the analytics to look at the key topics of conversation, the biggest online influencers, and what we can learn about social media for advocacy groups.

Key statistics

September was PCAM, and it received 2,013 mentions across all platforms and media. The most popular hashtag was #prostatecancer, which was used 660 times.

The average number of mentions per day was 64, and the busiest 24-hour period was September 5, when the charity ZERO – The End of Prostate Cancer held its run/walk event which contributed to 140 mentions.

There were 120 mentions on September 25, when the Men’s Health Network and Hormone Health Network held a joint TweetChat. During the virtual event, 10 frequently asked questions about prostrate cancer were posed and answered.

There were 100 mentions on September 13, when the truck and trailer parts company, FindItParts, announced it would match all donations made to the Prostate Cancer Foundation made through its website.

More than 76% of PCAM-related activity took place on Twitter, which significantly outperformed all other platforms.

Facebook came in second, being responsible for 10.13% of activity. In terms of traditional media, general news outlets accounted for 4.77% of activity, regional newspapers for 2.73% and TV and radio for 2.43%.


The most commonly used hashtags throughout the campaign were #prostatecancer, #prostatecancerawarenessmonth #pcam18, #pcam and #countmein.

Analysis of all the content of all the mentions in September shows the most words used included prostate and awareness. Frequently used, but to a lesser degree were ‘screening’, ‘diagnosed’ and ‘family’.

Top advocacy influencers

When looking at Twitter alone, ZERO was the most influential advocacy group, with the Prostrate Cancer Foundation coming in second and Men’s Health Network fourth.

On Facebook, the Prostrate Cancer Foundation was the top influencer, ZERO second and the Prostate Cancer Research Institute was third.

What can we learn

Twitter significantly outperformed all other social media platforms and media outlets. This suggests the platform should be a primary focus for awareness raising activity. Advocacy groups are well placed to capitalize on this as the figures show they are among the top influencers on Twitter.

Across all platforms, the top four influencers were a pharmaceutical company, a hospital, a doctor and an advocacy group. This highlights the power of a collaborative approach to awareness campaigns.

The content with the widest reach included one or more of the official PCAM hashtags. This emphasizes the importance of well-tagged content when trying to reach a wider audience.

Content that included hard and fast facts and the importance of early diagnosis received the most traction, showing simple messages are well suited to social media-based awareness raising.


  1. American Cancer Society (2018). Key statistics for prostate cancer. Available at: (accessed October 2018).


Social media focus: Prostate Cancer Awareness Month 2018

Astellas Patient Advocacy is a function within Corporate Affairs at Astellas that focuses on creating, building and maintaining third-party relationships. We serve as a conduit between Astellas and external stakeholders to help improve patient outcomes, improve access issues and address patients’ unmet needs head on.

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