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Study: Singapore's public sector favours Instagram to communicate with the public

Study: Singapore's public sector favours Instagram to communicate with the public

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Across the four main social media networks, namely Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube, Instagram has emerged on top as the number one choice for engagement when it comes to Singapore's public sector engaging with Singapore residents. In a study, it was reported that content on Instagram increased 4.81% and that engagement was up 17.25% to 47.39%, thus, solidifying Instagram's position as the most engaging platform.

The study, done by unified customer experience platform Emplifi across 2022, took into account how 27 statutory boards, and 16 ministries are leveraging leading social media channels to communicate and engage with Singapore residents on a wide array of topics such as the environment, floods, public transportation, mental health, COVID-19 vaccinations and more.

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The study found that social media users continue to be highly engaged with government agencies with brand content making up about half (58.64%) of content on government profiles. Interaction s remained high thought at 97.72% or 6.15 million. 

User-generated content accounted for 41.36% of content studied but had only 143,585 interactions (2.28%). In terms of format, replies took the lead at 42.2%, followed by shares (32.84%) and posts (24.96%), cumulative across all main statutory boards and ministries social media profiles.

On Instagram in particular, Emplifi reported 3.61 million users which accounts for 66.3% of the country's population. It reported that the proportion of published content on the platform rose by 4.81% to 9,138 posts from 2021 to 2022. Engagement also increased by 17.25% to 2.91 million. 

“Social media is a part of today’s life – the world is increasingly digital and social-first. And we’ve seen Singapore government organisations use social media to their advantage, from real-time updates, answering questions to promoting a good cause. Ministers also recognize this key communication channel as a way to be more accessible and accountable to the general public,’ said Varun Sharma, the senior vice president of JAPAC and MEA at Emplifi. “Across both the public and private sector, social media is a vital part of an integrated marketing strategy and we don’t see this changing anytime soon”.

Some campaigns that Emplifi highlighted that drove the highest interactions on Instagram were the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF)’s NS55 with 90,209 interactions, The National Parks Board (NPB)’s #CityInNatureSG campaign with 102,054 interactions and the Land Transport Authority’s #ThereRailBeMore campaign with 21,058 interactions.

The study also noted that while Instagram also maintained its lead from 2021 as the most engaging platform with an engagement rate of 1.13% in 2022, YouTube was not far behind in second spot, followed by Facebook and Twitter.

It added that statutory boards tend to publish four times more content than ministries did in 2022. While both statutory boards and ministries saw interactions decrease in comparison to the previous year, interactions for the latter dropped by 53.13%, it noted. 

It was also highlighted that MINDEF and its defense arms such as the army, RSAF and navy had the highest audience interactions online with the army coming out on top with a total of 897,886 interactions across Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.

When it comes to ministers, Minister for National Development, Desmond Lee, came out on top with the most posts (1,024) across Instagram and Facebook. In second and third places were Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong (PM Lee) and the Minister for Defence, Dr. Ng Eng Hen.

PM Lee had the highest number of online interactions at 3,833,595 while Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister for Finance, Lawrence Wong (DPM Wong) had 1,771,506 interactions across his social profiles. Instagram also continued to remain the most engaging when it came to interacting with the public in this case. 

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