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How has the Public Sector Performed using Social Media?

The campaign and envangelism for government parastatals and other public institutions in Nigeria to embrace digitization is yet to be replicated in practical terms or fully implemented.

The major aspect of digitization is the social media. It remains the platform that has become a critical contributing factor to successful businesses and government, mostly in advanced countries.

Due to the knowledge gap and the inability to be proactive with social media enough, the public sector still remain at the lowest cadre in terms of using social media to engage Nigerians.

With social media platforms like Facebook, Youtube, LinkedIn and others, most developed nations are using using it as a vehicle to drive engagement and bridge the communication gap between the government and the citizens.

For instance, the USA government has given much priority to social media believing that it has the potentials of breaking communicatio barrier and boosting relationship with the Americans.

The question is, how far has Nigeria gone in the area of using social media to communicate and engage her citizens?

However, the Public Sector Performance on Social Media Report by Instinct Wave, a media, event and consulting firm, confirms that some public agencies and parastatals are not doing enough in terms of embracing the social media.

According to the firm, the report drew conclusions on the amount of followers and likes they have on their Twitter Accounts, Facebook pages, Instagram Fellowership, Youtube Subscribers, existing Linkedln accounts for staff and how they share relevant service information to the Nigerian public, likewise thier feedback mechanism.

Independence National Electoral Commission (INEC) is the most visible government agency in Nigeria on social media platforms. INEC has 726,000 followers on Twitter, 266,151 likes on Facebook and 37, 000 followers on Instagram. For Engagement, and Reach Engagement level, INEC has 60 percent on Facebook, 85 percent on Twiiter, 30 percent on Instagram.

The Nigerian Police Force (NPF) ranks second, with 406, 000 followers on Twitter, 510, 661 likes on Facebook, 2,836 on Facebook, 2, 836 on Instagram, 224 subscribers on Youtube, and 908 followers on LinkedIn.

On Engagement Level and Reach, Facebook 70 percent, Twitter 60 percent, Youtube 30 percent , LinkedIn 5 percent, Instagram 60 percent.

Meanwhile, the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) ranks third according to the report. FRSC has 203,000 followers on Twitter, 290,247 likes on Facebook, 2,626 followers on Instagram, 1,011 followers on LinkedIn.

The 12 page report which will be available soon implies that social media applications has been averagely accepted in public sector in Nigeria.However, the acceptance and broader adoption of sophisticated tactics that go beyond information and education paradigm, such as true engagement or networking strategies are still at the infancy.

However, despite embracing the use of social media platforms, the agencies and parastatals sector face the challenge such as leveraging the energy of the new generation eneration, and use to drive a new positive culture that supports high performance, poor engagement, poor capacity building on social media knowledge, duplication of social media platforms and creating a non social media platforms.

Unveiling the report to journalists in Lagos, Akin Naphtal, CEO, InstinctWave, said the public sector engagement with Nigerians on social media platforms remains very minimal, emphasising that much attention should be tailored towards social media, as this remains the most effective way to engage people.

He lamented that most of the decisions makers from the public sectors claim to be investing on social media so as to have a reputable online presence but haven’t started practicing what they have preached.

“Most times, we realise that some of these government agencies organizing events on how to go digital without them finding it deem to even deploy social media.

“Why are we talking about digital economy when the government is not ready to engage the people, ” he asked.

He explained that the thrust behind this report is reveal the mechanisms that have been adopted by the public sectors and how they have used social media over the years.

“The perception of the citizenry is bound to shift with this report. There would be adequate information to justify the reasons for communication gap and how information should be disseminated” Instinct Wave boss noted.

Other issues as spelt out by the report include lack of understanding of generating rightful and engaging content, lack of sharing best practices with private sector initiative.

Lack of strategy and innovation of social media tools, poor knowledge of engaging and connecting with the right audience, management and analysis of social media accounts and overview of feedbacks.