According to a report called #DigitalAssociations 2017 carried out by Cambre Associates, 33% of associations in Brussels are not digitally social. In a world where social media is taking over communications and advertising, it seems unimaginable that one third of associations in Brussels are opting out of this trend of conveying their message.
This is the third edition of the report, which first started in 2015, using data collected between August and December 2017 taking into account 598 european associations. The findings are revealing. Twitter remains the social media king, with its popularity, however, not growing as fast as in the previous years. The increase of characters and the decrease of space required for a photo are expected to attract more users in the professional field. The top five sectors for Twitter are: Business and finance, Telecommunications, Energy, Transport and Entertainment. Interestingly, the same goes for LinkedIn.
LinkedIn and YouTube have seen a considerable rise in numbers compared to 2016, with YouTube getting more than 2,000 new videos uploaded and attracting more than 3 million new views, hence rising by 6% in 2017. Facebook got a mere 2% increase and is used by associations mostly to promote specific campaigns rather than engaging with policymakers, stakeholders or conveying their policy priorities. The rest of the social media is still present but not very influential. However, that does not mean that the scene might not change in the future.
What is encouraging is that more and more associations have at least one channel. This shows that progress is being made, but there is still room for improvement and growth. Associations must never stop thinking about how to keep their channels alive with engaging content as the numbers of users are increasing and so are their demands. On the downside, this volume of social media requires more personnel and more time to update regularly. Associations should consider how the future is laid out based on the new technology entering the professional field on a daily basis and invest in that accordingly.