Social media is mainstream media. It’s no longer the poor relation of TV, radio, newspapers or web-based media.
In 2021, your question shouldn’t be, ‘will we fully embrace social?’, it should be ‘how do we master it and be a leader in the public sector?’
In episode two of The Public Sector Marketing Show I share the trends, tactics and team structure you need to master social media this year.
We also hear from two public sector pros who give insights into how they have embraced social media.
You’ll even get access to my free webinar on how to develop a social media strategy.
If you’re going all in with social media in 2021 then stay tuned to Episode 2 of The Public Sector Marketing Show hosted by Joanne Sweeney.
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Why Social Media is Mainstream Media
Let’s take a look at the 2020 Digital News Report compiled by Oxford University and Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism.
This study reveals new insights about digital news consumption based on a YouGov survey of over 80,000 online news consumers in 40 countries. You can read the results relevant to your country at https://www.digitalnewsreport.org/.
I will take Ireland as an example of why social media is mainstream news.
80% of respondents get their news from an online source, 39% of those from Facebook, followed by YouTube at 22%.
Here in Ireland, we are eager consumers of news. We are an informed nation and also an opinionated nation.
Social media use in Ireland sits at 98%, with citizens spending on average 1 hour and 49 minutes per day using social networks and social messaging sites. Meanwhile, 38% of the population are using social media for work. This data and the local data for your country can be found at DataReportal.com.
Email as a source of news is also growing in popularity. Why? The report correctly states that:
“Email can help build habit and loyalty, which is particularly important for new business models such as subscription and membership.”
Let’s take a global overview of the role of email in digital news consumption:
- > 28% using email news each week in Belgium
- > 24% in South Africa where bandwidth is expensive, text-based emails can also be an efficient way to distribute online news
- > 21% in the United States
- > 10% in Sweden
- > 9% in South Korea and the UK
The reasons for these differences are not entirely clear say the report authors but it is surmised that it may be related to the extent to which popular publishers have invested in and promoted the format compared with other channels.
Let’s not argue with the data. Let’s embrace social and digital communications to transform our relationship with the public. You now have a direct line with the public for your PR efforts.
Twitter is your Digital PR Newsroom. It’s where governments, politicians, policy makers, journalists, media outlets, interest groups, lobby groups and an informed public hang out.
Facebook is the public facing social network and you should be using it to translate press releases, policy papers, speeches and strategy documents into accessible ‘how does this affect me’ content in the form of livestream Q&A sessions, explainer videos, citizen case studies and visual prompts such as quote graphics.
Instagram is where you can build the culture, personality and reputation of your government or public sector agency with a social reporter who introduces the topics and extends the take-over of the account to other public figures and subject matter experts in your organisation.
So do you agree? Is social media mainstream communications?
I’d really like your opinion on this topic. Tweet me your views to @JSTweetsDigital.Social media use in Ireland sits at 98%, with citizens spending on average 1 hour and 49 minutes per day using social networks and social messaging sites.Click To Tweet
2021 Trends, Tactics & Team Structure
- 2021 social media trends report by Talkwalker & HubSpot
- High-quality livestreaming
- Stories by Social Reporters
- Reels & TikTok-style mobile videos
- Audio authenticity
- Social listening
- Senior leadership voice
- Team structure – scaling across organisation
There are two organisations that I want to showcase who demonstrate their commitment to social media expansion. The first one is from the An Garda Siochana, the Irish police force. Its Director of Communications Andrew McLindon explains how they leverage social media for greater public engagement.
The next case study is from Donegal Education and Training Board. Communications Officer Dr Sandra Buchanan, explains how they recognised the need to expand social media to have greater reach and control of their stories.
Social Media Strategy Webinar
- > 2021 Social Media Trends report by Talkwalker and HubSpot
- > Digital News Report 2020 by Oxford University and Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism
- > DataReportal use of social media
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Thank You for Listening!
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