From transactional to collaborative relationships was originally published in FutureGov on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Original source – FutureGov

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I don’t tend to blog about tech news as there’s already a whole pile of useful new sites that do that job well.

However, the exception is news from Mashable that could really change how people can connect with Facebook groups.

Facebook is trialing the ability for a page to join a group.

This is potentially huge as it gets over an obstacle where comms people have to use their own Facebook profile on behalf of the organisation to reach groups.

A quick recap: #1 Why Facebook groups are important

I’ve been banging a drum for Facebook groups for some time now.

Research in the district of Braintree shows people there are turning to groups and pages over public sector pages. There are more than 1,000 groups and pages in a population of just over 53,000.

That’s an incredible highly networked number.

A quick recap: #2 Yes, but there are barriers

The barriers that have stopped public sector people getting involved with pages are clear. Maybe comms people don’t want their personal profile to be exposed to criticism or abuse.

So…

A quick recap #3: Current ways around the barrier

There’s two current ways to connect with Facebook groups.

Use your own profile to join a group and contribute directly.

Use your own profile to send a private message to the group admin to introduce yourself and inquire if they’d share content for you.

There is a third. Create a work profile to connect with groups or admin directly. I’m strongly suggesting you don’t do that. It’s against Facebook’s terms and conditions. There’s a slightly messy undertone of fake news and spying, too.

What the changes mean

Firstly, it’s important to stress that these are a trial.

  1. No, this won’t open the whole of Facebook’s wide ecosystem of groups to you. Group admin will have to change settings and then vet your application. Don’t expect to waltz in anywhere.
  2. Yes, a page that joins a group can still be chucked out as if it was a member. So, don’t expect to be a fixture.
  3. But if you are in, you’ll be able to post and comment in groups as the page rather than as yourself. This can give some credibility to your answers or your content. It’ll also re-assure people reluctant to use their own profile.
  4. But you could be a grief magnet. Having a corporate page talking in a group rather than a person may attract more abuse. If you’re a real person the tendency is for there to be less abuse as people mind less shouting at a logo.
  5. But you could unlock a big chunk of audience that you wouldn’t be reaching otherwise. The new Mum who doesn’t read the local paper or listen to the radio could be reached through the New Mum Facebook group she’s joined for support.
  6. But you’ll have to change your mindset. This won’t be one-and-done comms. You will need to search Facebook for the right groups, build a relationship with the admin and maybe target a dozen groups for your targeted content. The New Mum Facebook group will want to hear new parent advice. It won’t want to hear about an exhibition of Old Stafford.
  7. Yes, you’ll need to know about Facebook groups on your patch. A trawl through the towns, villages, estates and communities on your patch will surprise you. You won’t need to know all of them. But you will need to know the process of searching for the right community.

So, the answer is broadly good news for public sector comms people. But it’s also a bit messy. Just slightly less messy than it was before.

I’ve not seen this change in my role as admin of the Public Sector Comms Headspace Facebook group. I’ll keep you posted.

I’ll be talking about how to connect with Facebook groups as part of ESSENTIAL DIGITAL SKILLS FOR COMMS in Birmingham on November 6 and London on November 6.

Drop me a note if those dates don’t work for you dan@comms2point0.co.uk. 

Thanks to Jamie Baker from the UK Government Cabinet Office for spotting this Facebook development.

Picture credit: Book Catalog / Flickr.

 

 

 

Original source – The Dan Slee Blog » LOCAL SOCIAL: Is it time for a Local localgovcamp?

The most successful sites and marketers always ensure that they are on the cutting edge of all the latest algorithms that are put in place in terms of SEO. Below you can find some of the latest SEO trends that are likely to be extremely important in the coming months or even years.

  • Voice search – The time of voice search is upon us, and it brings yet another drastic change when it comes to SEO. An estimated 20% to 25% of all searches are done via voice today. When using voice search services, search terms tend to be longer and more conversational, so keywords should be optimised accordingly.

  • Video engagement – People love watching videos and recently this has been trending upwards fast. Their popularity could be due to a number of reasons, including faster internet speeds, user-friendly smartphones, and the use of social media. Search engines have recognised this and now reward companies that are appealing to these customer preferences.

  • Credible sources – Thanks to a large number of fake news stories recently, search engines have taken a step up when it comes to how they rank content. Having high quality, useful, and relevant content will no longer be enough, you will have to try and back this up with credible sources as well.

  • Snippet focus – Google has an aim to deliver what the user wants quickly and efficiently. Today, it is delivering a lot of information directly inside the SERPs, with structured snippets. If your site has top ranking content, then it may be delivered to users without them even having to click through to your website.

  • Social media – In many ways, social media sites can be used almost like search engines themselves. As this trend is set to increase in the future, content should be produced and optimised both for search engines and social media sites. An added benefit of these sites is that paid targeting can be used to reach people who are most important for a business.

 

106 Quick and Fascinating Voice Search Facts & Stats

The post Up and coming SEO Trends appeared first on Communities & Collaboration.

Original source – Steve Dale online

Robert Taylor has been appointed as non-executive director and chair at the Behavioural Insights Team (BIT).

Robert joins the social purpose company with more than three decades’ experience across the financial and creative industries, most recently at the Financial Conduct Authority, where he focuses on global asset management regulation.

He is the former Chief Executive of Kleinwort Benson Bank, and also currently chairs the University for Creative Arts in Kent and Surrey. Rob is the chairman of Truman’s Brewery and a non-executive director of the East London NHS Foundation Trust, and previously chaired the Whitechapel Gallery.

Peter Holmes, BIT’s non-executive director and chair since 2014, has stepped down after a successful 3 year term. In that time BIT has grown internationally, establishing offices in New York, Sydney, Wellington and Singapore.

BIT was created by the then Prime Minister in 2010 to apply behavioural science to public policy. The team was mutualised in 2014 and is now a social purpose company.

The team continues to prioritise public service and positive social impact. Recent examples include shorter waiting times NHS patients, increased exam pass rates among English and Maths students, and supporting emerging economies with tax collection.

Dr David Halpern, chief executive of the Behavioural Insights Team, said:

“I am delighted that Robert is joining our board as Chair and bringing with him his energy and creativity. His outstanding range of experience across the third, public and private sectors puts us in a strong position as we look to scale our social purpose work in the UK and internationally. ”

Robert Taylor, incoming chair of the Behavioural Insights Team, said:

“I’m very much looking forward to joining the Behavioural Insights Team as chair. Its work in recent years has established BIT as a world leader in the application of behavioural science to policy – I hope my skills and experience will be useful to directors and staff across its global offices in the months and years ahead. ”

For more information please contact press@bi.team

Original source – Behavioural Insights Team

nominate someone brilliant in the UnAwards17 pic.jpg

We know that a common complaint from comms professionals is a lack of recognition for their work. The UnAwards18 is your chance to change that. In a big way.

by Darren Caveney

Whether it’s a brilliant campaign, managing communications through a crisis, or just turning up every day of the year and being the best you can be, it’s not a lot to ask to get the odd ‘well done’ or ‘thank you’.

But it doesn’t happen often enough for many and that is one of the reasons behind the comms2point UnAwards18 – to shine a light on the professionals proudly flying comms, pr and digital flags across the sectors.

Now there’s only one thing better than being shortlisted for an award – that’s being nominated by someone else for an award. It’s a special thing.  It means you’ve caught someone’s eye, demanded their attention or impressed them with your creativity, doggedness, enthusiasm and skills.

Know someone like that? Then why not nominate them in the UnAwards18?

There are two ways in which you can nominate.

Option one – If you think an individual or a team should be in the running this year just complete this short online form and hit submit. I’ll do the rest and contact them on your behalf.

Option 2 – you can nominate an individual or a team in any of this year’s categories and complete the entry form for them. Two which really lend themselves to nominations are:

–          Best comms/digital team

–          Lifetime achievement award

For this second option, all you need to do is complete the simple entry form here and email it through to admin@comms2point0unawards.co.uk

When we set up the UnAwards we were absolutely clear that they would be the most accessible industry awards around.  Where the community were actively involved in shaping and deciding.

So, best of all you, the comms community, gets to choose the winners through a public vote in these two categories, as well as our ‘Post of the year’ category.

We’ll tell you more about the public vote soon.

HOW LONG HAVE I GOT TO NOMINATE SOMEONE?

The closing date is 25 October (midnight) so get nominating.

BE THERE ON THE DAY…

Want to soak up the atmosphere of the coolest comms, PR, marketing and digital event of the year in person? UnAwards tickets are priced at just £20 + vat each. See, we told you the UnAwards were really accessible.

Tickets are available on a first come, first served basis and will sell out so don’t hang around.  You can grab yours here.

Darren Caveney is creator of comms2point and organiser of the UnAwards17

image by Steve Snodgrass

Original source – comms2point0 free online resource for creative comms people – comms2point0

Two excellent excuses to visit libraries…….. not that I really need an excuse, but it is lovely to have a reason to visit lots of new libraries in a week!

Fun Palaces

First up was Fun Palaces weekend: 6-7 October. And while there is a great Fun Palace in Chatham, I wanted to find some libraries taking part, so we headed north of the Thames to Essex. Our original plan was to try and visit 3 (in 3 different library authorities!) but the traffic thwarted us – so we’ll have to visit Chelmsford library another time.

We were successful in finding 2 library Fun Palaces though – the first in Grays library, Thurrock. We arrived early, just as people were setting up, but had a chat with a lady from the knitting group, and then spent some time making a basket from woven newspaper ‘spines’.

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Inside Grays library

The library is found inside the Thameside centre – which it shares with a museum, theatre and cafe.

Next stop was Westcliff, to visit one of Southend’s libraries. We used to visit family in Southend, but I don’t ever remember seeing this building. It is Grade II listed, I guess due to its unusual construction: masses of huge windows, very slim metal columns and an unusual ‘ridge and furrow’ roof.

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Inside Westcliff library

I love the Beano characters still in situ following the Summer Reading Challenge! In the photo above, you can just make out the first evidence of Fun Palace – some of the 8 model planes which were laid out on and around the book cases. We spoke with the model maker and learned lots about different kinds of batteries (always a trade off – more power, longer life, weight – to say nothing of cost.)

There was a craft table, another with people doing quick health checks, and another with someone I later discovered was Andy – with his raspberry pis. Out in the garden were community champions promoting recycling, in front was a cycle repair team, and in a side room was a local reptile group – who had brought a tortoise, a tarantula, and 2 snakes. I was mesmerised when holding the king python – constant movement of muscles under its skin, and the most beautiful patterns.

Libraries Week

Libraries Week runs from 8 – 13 October, and the theme this year is wellbeing. A week long opportunity to showcase the many ways in which libraries bring communities together, combat loneliness, provide a space for reading and creativity and support people with their mental health.

A very busy time for me at work – encouraging colleagues to visit their local library – then share a photo and comment, plus plans for minister to visit libraries, a series of blog posts, and lots of social media activity. Good to see #LibrariesWeek trending on twitter – there have been some amusing tweets, plus lots of lovely memories of libraries – many in response to this tweet from Radio 4.

First visit to a library today was a quick stop in Charing Cross – a long narrow building, but a bright space.

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In Charing Cross library

I’m hoping to visit as many new libraries as possible – and will try to fit in some with specific connections or memories for me. While I probably wont be able to make it to Kendal – the first library I was a member, or Brackley library where Mum  worked, or the Huw Owen at Aberystwyth University, I did travel to the end of the Metropolitan line today, and visit Uxbridge. I was a member there when I moved back to London after studying, and remember seeing Anna McCaffrey at a ‘meet the author’ evening.

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Uxbridge library

The library had a substantial refurbishment in 2014 and was bright and spacious inside.

Finally on my way back I stopped off in Ickenham – lovely small library with lots of reading and study nooks. Not a bad tally for Day 1!

Day 2

As part of my [self imposed] quest to include libraries which had some kind of personal connection to me, and, as a reminder that Libraries Week is to celebrate all kinds of libraries, on Tuesday I called in to the Institution of Civil Engineers. It is their 200th anniversary this year, and there is a wonderful exhibition in their old library, aimed at encouraging young people to think about civil engineering as a career.

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In the ICE library

The connection to me is that, as the daughter of a civil engineer, I know a lot about what contribution they make, and it was good to not only explore the ‘old’ library, but also to be invited upstairs to see what is now called the members resources area (“where the librarians work”) – a slightly smaller space, but with lovely arched ceiling and lots of study nooks.

A day of Carnegies

Day 3 was a day to represent my long time interest in charting the Carnegie legacy.  First stop was Islington Central, where the team had invited me to attend the launch  of their new collection of material related to women’s health. A perfect idea to illustrate the wellbeing theme of this year’s Libraries Week, and a good chance to hear about their plans to develop this building.

I then took the Victoria line to its end, and visited Walthamstow library. Doubly relevant to me as besides the Carnegie history, my grandfather was born in Walthamstow, so may have used this library.

I traveled home just in time to pop into Rochester library (not a Carnegie – although there used to be one in Chatham, before the council demolished it) and use the wifi to publish a blog post and check my emails!

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In Rochester library

Out East – plus Libraries Change Lives

A shift of emphasis for Day 4, as I headed to CILIP, for their AGM and ceremony to celebrate the projects shortlisted for the Libraries Change Lives 2018 award. Congratulations to Glasgow, who were announced as winners, but I recommend watching all 3 films – as the projects in Kirklees and Newcastle are equally life changing.

Back on the libraries trail, and this time I headed to the end of the District line, to visit libraries in Havering. First stop was Upminster – one of the libraries where my mum worked in the 60s (she was there when it opened).  It hasn’t changed structurally, although the huge mural on the back wall was added during a recent refurbishment.

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In front of Upminster library

A couple of stops along the District line, and I got off at Elm Park. The library there was opened in 2009, and meets all sorts of high environmental standards,  with its sedum roof, solar panels, energy efficient lighting and insulation made from recycled newspaper.

It is also a bright and welcoming library – and I picked up a brochure for the Havering Literary Festival – a hugely impressive lineup of authors and events.

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Inside Elm Park library

Oh yes, and remember I mentioned plans for ministers to visit libraries? They did: the Secretary of State went to Salisbury, and Libraries Minister Michael Ellis visited Wimbledon.

Day 5 of Libraries Week – all about library people

Back to CILIP for the conference/workshop organised by the Public and Mobile Libraries group. An interesting day, hearing about progress with the Public Libraries Skills strategy, the new ethical framework, 100% digital Leeds, and talking with colleagues from around the public library network. One session provided the perfect photo to close the week – Jo has customised ‘Guess Who?’ to show the faces of the library people who have appeared in her podcast series ‘Librarians with Lives‘.

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Guess Who? – the library version

So that was Libraries Week 2018 – exhausting, and I was really just an observer! But visiting all those libraries was an excellent reminder of  how there is no such thing as a stereotype library – rather a range from old – new, traditional – experimental, calm – lively, suiting the communities they serve. And if you search the hashtag, you will see a national, colourful picture of the diverse range of services offered and people enjoying themselves in libraries all around the country.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Original source – Julia’s Blog

‘Internet of Public Service jobs’ is a weekly list of vacancies related to product management, user experience, data and design in…you guessed it…the ‘internet of public service’ curated by @jukesie every Sunday.

Sign up for the weekly email at tinyletter.com/jukesie

[01] Senior Housing Programmes Manager — Systems
Homes England
London
£50,500 — £70,700 plus London allowance
Closing date: 24/10/2018

[02] Senior Data Scientists and Data Scientists
Department for Work and Pensions
London, Newcastle, Sheffield and Leeds
Up to £69,094
Closing date: 25/10/2018

[03] Data Visualisation Producer
Office for National Statistics
Fareham
£35,200 — £40,249
Closing date: 19/11/2018

[04] Organisation Development & Design Strategic Adviser
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Bristol, Reading, London, Worcester and York
£55,710 — £65,080
Closing date: 28/10/2018

[05] Developer Program Product Manager
Mozilla
Berlin, London, Toronto, Remote

[06] Business Analyst
BFI
London
£44,673- £52,263
Closing date: 24/10/2018

[07] StoryFutures Manager
Royal Holloway University
London
£42,126
Closing date: 24/10/2018

[08] Digital Product Manager
Royal Academy
London
£35,000 — £45,000
Closing date: 28/10/2018

[09] Product Designer
Futuregov
London or Sheffield
Salary not stated
Closing date: 02/11/2018

[10] Head of Nesta Scotland
Nesta
Edinburgh
£50,000–£70,000
Closing date: 28/10/2018


Internet of Public Service Jobs: 14/10/2018 was originally published in Product for the People on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Original source – Product for the People

The Department of Health and Social Care regularly asks for the public to engage with its work through different platforms. From sharing stories on GOV.UK to Twitter chats with community groups. On 10 September 2018, Matt Hancock launched Talk Health and Care, a space for those working in the health and social care sector to share their ideas directly with the department.

In the first month of the platform, we had over 500 people sign up to take part in the conversations that have been happening. These conversations range from agreeing with an idea and sharing good practice to asking for change from the department.

The site consists of multiple pages, with a collaborative space for people to submit ideas relating to 6 challenges. We have found that some challenges receive more ideas and interaction than others. As the platform is an ever-evolving project, we are able to trial and test different approaches.

Jimmy, one of our content and channels managers, noticed that the challenges with shorter titles were receiving more comments. We shortened one of the challenge titles to see if this increased idea submission, which it did.

This live testing enables us to bring policy and comms colleagues along the journey of improving digital content and engagement.

The platform also has a blog section. This has also been an experiment to find out what kinds of issues people who work in health and social care want to hear about. Having guest bloggers on the platform has allowed us to put a spotlight on different issues while ensuring the experience of those affected by the issue has been shared.

We have a long way to go to make sure that the engagement we do reaches all of those who work in health and social care. The #TalkHealthAndCare platform is the beginning of a new era of open consultation and discussion for the department – sign up to keep up with the latest developments to the platform.

Original source – Stephen Hale

fac

If there’s one thing I can tell you it’s that Facebook groups and pages in a local area are huge. Not just a bit huge. A lot huge.

For the last 12-months I’ve vanished into a worm-hole of research looking at the digital footprint of the platform in an area.

Braintree in Essex is the area I’ve been looking at. It has a population of 53,000.

Why that town in particular? A chance conversation. I was talking to someone about the quiet spread of local Facebook groups and pages and how I’d love to carry out research on how big an impact they had, what they were talking about and how much of it was actually accurate.

Look at Braintree, they said. It’s a good mix. It’s partly urban and partly rural.

So, I did.

Researching a community

In September last year I set about counting the Facebook groups and pages in Braintree. But not just the town. Also the villages. Coggeshall, Black Notley, Bocking, Witham and Great Bardfield too.

As a former journalist, it was fascinating. All human life was there. A row about a footpath ploughed up by the farmer. A debate about parking. The latest in the campaign against an incinerator. Stones painted by children left in the churchyard. A Facebook group set-up by two people banned from a pub.

Facebook is not just a global platform. It is the world’s Parish pump, too.

A Facebook community in numbers

And I counted the numbers.

Back in 2017, there were 301 groups and 279 pages in and around Braintree. All pages are open but around 60 per cent of groups are closed.

Braintree is a town of bargain hunters. There are more than 50 buy and sell groups in Braintree alone. No wonder that the small ads of newspapers have been gutted. What would have been once for sale in the back end of the local paper is now on Facebook.

There’s a village called Coggeshall. It had more than 50 groups and pages. Not bad for a community of less than 5,000.

The pub, the hairdressers, the tattoo parlour, the football team, the community, the year five and six parents all had their corner of Face book.

So, I counted the likes and memberships, too.

There were 498,447. In other words, every man, woman and child in Braintree likes nine local groups or pages.

Events are what people talk about

I tried to classify what they were talking about, too.

The most popular topic – 30 per cent – was events. A fundraising sale. A birthday party. An exhibition. Then at 17 per cent was ‘for sale’. Then at less than five per cent everything else. So, crime, health, the environment, parks and countryside were all niche topics.

Not fake

But is Braintree a hotbed for fake news?

I’d persuaded Essex County Council and Braintree District Council to work with me on this research. They agreed to fact check every reference to local government over a seven day period just to see what was correct and incorrect.

The former local government comms person in me expected swathes of debate about potholes, parking, litter and libraries. The truth was more simple. Overall, 15 per cent of content was local government-related.

Just 16 per cent of council-related conversations held mistruths. So, blaming the district council for gritting the roads in cold weather when it’s actually the county was low level. But a false rumour about a mosque in a park was more serious.

Armed with this research, I’ve been training teams to look more locally when they are communicating. But its not without problems.

How you can plug into groups

If you want to communicate through a group you need to join using your own profile. Lock it down if you like, but it needs to be you. Not a specially set-up work one. That’s against Facebook’s terms and conditions. Some people aren’t happy doing that and that’s fine. A slightly less exposed way is to approach the admin by private message to see if they’d share some content for you. Content posted to the corporate page can work well.

But in training, not everyone wants to do this. That’s fine. The alternative is to spend money through Facebook advertising. But in a time of vanishing budgets that can be a tall order.

Braintree 12-months on

So 12-months on, I went back to Braintree to carry out some research to see what had changed.

The numbers have gone through the roof.

Where in September 2017 there was 579 groups and pages 12-months on this has soared to 1,037. Groups have risen in number by 14 per cent while pages have risen by a staggering 147 per cent.

Likes and memberships of Facebook groups have soared by 57 per cent to just short of 800,000. That’s membership of 14 groups and pages for everyone who lives in Braintree. That’s staggering.

And the village of Coggeshall? There were more than 60 groups and pages last year. In 2018, this was 95.

Public sector and groups

The public sector is starting to get smarter with groups and pages, too.

Across the country, Police are asking admin to post missing person appeals in local groups. Fire services are using groups where there are more women as a recruitment drive for more women. They’re also using groups to reach communities where there is a fire that needs a warning message.

How you can get to grips with groups

Run a search in Facebook for the area you live in. Go and join it. Chip in. You’ll learn something.

I’ll be talking about this and how it can work for you at two upcoming workshops. The Essential Digital Skills for Comms workshop in Birmingham on December 6 as well as London on December 9.

Drop me a line dan@comms2point0.co.uk.

 

 

 

 

 

Original source – The Dan Slee Blog » LOCAL SOCIAL: Is it time for a Local localgovcamp?

fac

If there’s one thing I can tell you it’s that Facebook groups and pages in a local area are huge. Not just a bit huge. A lot huge.

For the last 12-months I’ve vanished into a worm-hole of research looking at the digital footprint of the platform in an area.

Braintree in Essex is the area I’ve been looking at. It has a population of 53,000.

Why that town in particular? A chance conversation. I was talking to someone about the quiet spread of local Facebook groups and pages and how I’d love to carry out research on how big an impact they had, what they were talking about and how much of it was actually accurate.

Look at Braintree, they said. It’s a good mix. It’s partly urban and partly rural.

So, I did.

Researching a community

In September last year I set about counting the Facebook groups and pages in Braintree. But not just the town. Also the villages. Coggeshall, Black Notley, Bocking, Witham and Great Bardfield too.

As a former journalist, it was fascinating. All human life was there. A row about a footpath ploughed up by the farmer. A debate about parking. The latest in the campaign against an incinerator. Stones painted by children left in the churchyard. A Facebook group set-up by two people banned from a pub.

Facebook is not just a global platform. It is the world’s Parish pump, too.

A Facebook community in numbers

And I counted the numbers.

Back in 2017, there were 301 groups and 279 pages in and around Braintree. All pages are open but around 60 per cent of groups are closed.

Braintree is a town of bargain hunters. There are more than 50 buy and sell groups in Braintree alone. No wonder that the small ads of newspapers have been gutted. What would have been once for sale in the back end of the local paper is now on Facebook.

There’s a village called Coggeshall. It had more than 50 groups and pages. Not bad for a community of less than 5,000.

The pub, the hairdressers, the tattoo parlour, the football team, the community, the year five and six parents all had their corner of Face book.

So, I counted the likes and memberships, too.

There were 498,447. In other words, every man, woman and child in Braintree likes nine local groups or pages.

Events are what people talk about

I tried to classify what they were talking about, too.

The most popular topic – 30 per cent – was events. A fundraising sale. A birthday party. An exhibition. Then at 17 per cent was ‘for sale’. Then at less than five per cent everything else. So, crime, health, the environment, parks and countryside were all niche topics.

Not fake

But is Braintree a hotbed for fake news?

I’d persuaded Essex County Council and Braintree District Council to work with me on this research. They agreed to fact check every reference to local government over a seven day period just to see what was correct and incorrect.

The former local government comms person in me expected swathes of debate about potholes, parking, litter and libraries. The truth was more simple. Overall, 15 per cent of content was local government-related.

Just 16 per cent of council-related conversations held mistruths. So, blaming the district council for gritting the roads in cold weather when it’s actually the county was low level. But a false rumour about a mosque in a park was more serious.

Armed with this research, I’ve been training teams to look more locally when they are communicating. But its not without problems.

How you can plug into groups

If you want to communicate through a group you need to join using your own profile. Lock it down if you like, but it needs to be you. Not a specially set-up work one. That’s against Facebook’s terms and conditions. Some people aren’t happy doing that and that’s fine. A slightly less exposed way is to approach the admin by private message to see if they’d share some content for you. Content posted to the corporate page can work well.

But in training, not everyone wants to do this. That’s fine. The alternative is to spend money through Facebook advertising. But in a time of vanishing budgets that can be a tall order.

Braintree 12-months on

So 12-months on, I went back to Braintree to carry out some research to see what had changed.

The numbers have gone through the roof.

Where in September 2017 there was 579 groups and pages 12-months on this has soared to 1,037. Groups have risen in number by 14 per cent while pages have risen by a staggering 147 per cent.

Likes and memberships of Facebook groups have soared by 57 per cent to just short of 800,000. That’s membership of 14 groups and pages for everyone who lives in Braintree. That’s staggering.

And the village of Coggeshall? There were more than 60 groups and pages last year. In 2018, this was 95.

Public sector and groups

The public sector is starting to get smarter with groups and pages, too.

Across the country, Police are asking admin to post missing person appeals in local groups. Fire services are using groups where there are more women as a recruitment drive for more women. They’re also using groups to reach communities where there is a fire that needs a warning message.

How you can get to grips with groups

Run a search in Facebook for the area you live in. Go and join it. Chip in. You’ll learn something.

I’ll be talking about this and how it can work for you at two upcoming workshops. The Essential Digital Skills for Comms workshop in Birmingham on December 6 as well as London on December 9.

Drop me a line dan@comms2point0.co.uk.

 

 

 

 

 

Original source – The Dan Slee Blog » LOCAL SOCIAL: Is it time for a Local localgovcamp?