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At Hearing First, our mission is to help families ensure their child who is deaf or hard of hearing has opportunities to reach their full potential through listening and spoken language (LSL). Expanding on the community and resources provided on HearingFirst.org, a new YouTube series was launched in January 2023 with the specific goal of reaching more families with information to support them along the journey.
The weekly series allows parents to learn:
Here is an example of a video:
Hearing Aids vs Cochlear Implants (For Babies and Kids)
Hearing First supports families of children who are deaf or hard of hearing when they need information, a resource, a connection with another family, or advice on what to do next on the journey for their child to listen, talk, read and thrive.
As we were planning for 2023 activities to reach and engage families, we saw the trends pointing to the need for more video content to answer common questions as they navigate the next steps upon a failed newborn hearing screening or hearing loss diagnosis. After researching what is available to families of children with hearing loss online in terms of video content to answer these questions, we found a gap that we knew we could fill with a helpful and engaging weekly YouTube video series.
To bring the video series to life we determined topics using the “They Ask, You Answer” strategy and worked closely with subject matter experts (SMEs) to understand the most common questions parents have when their child fails the newborn hearing screening or is identified with hearing loss. Final topics were reviewed against YouTube and Google search behavior so we could provide the most helpful and educational content for families in a friendly and informative way.
Our goal with weekly videos is to create accurate, relevant, and research-based content to meet the needs of families. However, too many videos in the space are clinical and cold. We want to ensure that the videos come across as approachable, friendly, and warm - like parents are having a conversation with a trusted friend vs. hearing from a practitioner using professional jargon. We decided to feature our CEO, Dr. Teresa Caraway as the expert in the videos due to her ability to translate complicated topics into language that is easy to understand for parents due to her years of parent coaching experience. In addition, we utilized our in-house subject matter experts to create scripts that were clear yet engaging for families.
The weekly YouTube series has allowed us to reach families with children who are deaf or hard of hearing in a way that holds their attention and sparks their interest. Our goal was to increase subscribers to our YouTube channel, as the data shows younger parents, ages 25-34, spend a lot of time on YouTube. We hit our goal by almost triple! In 2023 we increased subscribers from 609 viewers to 1,814. In addition, we wanted to increase video views and click-throughs to the Hearing First website to increase engagement with helpful content.
The views for our weekly videos exceed our typical video view benchmarks for educational content. Prior to launching our new weekly YouTube videos, videos on our YouTube channel had an average of 265 views per video. After one year, our new videos have an average view of 1,752 views per video, an increase of 661 percent. Within the first year, since we started releasing weekly videos, 18 videos have over one thousand views, and one video has 13k views! In addition, visits from YouTube to HearingFirst.org increased from 18 visits in 2022 to 10,054 visits 2023, showing that families are accessing the resources linked in the video descriptions.
In addition to views and click-throughs, the videos are resonating with families. Here are a few examples of the comments we’ve received on the videos that indicate we are producing the type of content we set out to create — helpful, engaging, and informative to support families along the LSL journey:
Checkout the top 3 videos from our YouTube channel:
My Baby Failed Their Hearing Screening. Now What?
Keeping Hearing Devices On a Little One: Why it Matters!
Simple Ways to Check Your Child’s Hearing Loss for A Progressive Loss
View the Hearing First YouTube channel here.
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Remember, you’re not alone on this journey. Thousands of parents have been in your shoes. Find other parents who can share from experience, offer encouragement, and help your family reach your LSL goals.
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