In the top 100 most social brands determined by Vitrue, not a single one is directly related to health or health care.

Among the most visible industry sectors in top 100 are:

  • Automobile manufacturers (Ford, Honda, Lincoln, GM and Mercedes rank highest among the autos).
  • All-things-Apple including the #1 socially-ranking iPhone, #3 Apple corporate, #7 iPod, and the Mac itself at #16.
  • Broadcasters including #2 ranked CNN, MTV, Turner, Fox News, and ABC all in the top 25.
  • Food is very social, with Starbucks, Coke, Pepsi, McDonalds, Subway, Red Bull, Wendy’s, Burger King, Sprite, Chili’s, KFC and Taco Bell in the top 100.
  • Electronics and information technology are also top 100 social brands.

So whither health and health care?

Health Populi’s Hot Points: I was surprised not to see consumer-facing health brands in Vitrue’s Top 100 social brands list. There is much hoopla made on the subject of mommy-bloggers and the power of mothers online; in fact, I’m one of those analysts who talks a lot about Mother-Power Online. Where are the diaper brands, the baby powder, the Boomer-targeted pain and over-the-counter sleeping meds?

While upwards of 17% of the US economy goes to health care, social media lacks its share of health care media money. This is changing in 2009 as health brands look to do more with less. One harbinger to note: the fastest-growing segment of new Facebook accounts is women over 55.

Watch for more health and health care brands to enter the social media milieu in 2009 as their marketers and lawyers learn from other industries who are well entrenched in corporate and employee blogs, on YouTube, and toe-dipping into Twitter.