A blog about digital government, communications, citizen satisfaction & engagement, GovDelivery, and other e-government issues
Header

3-trends-fedWhat are the top priorities for government communications in 2014 at the federal and local levels? This is the question we posed to 350 government communicators. Take a look at what they said about focusing on results, implementing multichannel strategy, and increasing outreach in this infographic, or grab a copy of the federal government report or the state & local government report to read on your own.

Focus on results with a multichannel strategy

Boosting engagement and targeted messaging were the top two communication priorities at the federal, state and local government levels. However, other areas of focus differed between these levels of government. At the federal level, better content, mobile, and leveraging social media are being prioritized in that order. While at the local level, the priorities focused on mobile, leveraging social media, and better content. This trend indicates that state and local governments  are looking for new ways to “spread the word” on their content and make it available on mobile devices and social networks.

The majority of respondents from the federal government and local governments agreed that growing the size of their digital audience is a priority for 2014. They are also heavily focused on email and social media. However, the majority of respondents from both levels of government stated they have no plans to test email messaging. A few will experiment with content layouts or subject lines, but more than 57% at both levels of government stated they will not test email messaging in any way. This may be a priority to reconsider, since email messaging is a primary method of communicating with stakeholders—knowing what types of messages and content best engage those stakeholders is vital information. If federal and local governments want to better engage their digital audience, testing their email messaging to see what resonates with their target audience is a great strategy.

With both levels of government working to increase their digital audiences, one of the best strategies they can implement is to add an email subscription form to their websites, emails, social networks, mobile platforms, and more. In a constantly connected, digital world, not having a central place of communication tied to every one of your digital presences means you’re missing out on easy ways to connect with more of your audience.

Grab your copy of the 2014 Federal Trends Report or the 2014 State Trends Report and their accompanying infographics to learn more about what is going on with government communications throughout the year.

See original post on GovLoop.

Guest Post by: Derek Belt, Social Media Specialist – King County, WA

Have you watched somewhat helplessly these past few months as your Facebook interactions dropped rapidly? Has the “reach” of your posts dipped as low as you’ve ever seen it, no matter how great your content is?

It’s not your fault. It’s Facebook’s fault. And they’re doing it on purpose.

Here are just a few recent headlines from across the web:

The times they are a-changing (again)

This is an important topic and one organizations across the world are having right this very moment, from government agencies to high-powered marketing firms. Bottom line, we need to change the way we think about Facebook. It’s no longer a great communications tool (if it ever was is genuinely open for debate).

For many of us, the whole reason our organizations got on Facebook in the first place was to share information with the public. Well, recent changes to Facebook’s computer algorithm have made it increasingly difficult to reach our audiences, and it’s only going to get more difficult.

What’s changed? See my presentation below:

State of Facebook 2014 from King County, WA

So what do we do now?

Facebook can still be a great A) customer service portal, B) market research tool, and C) advertising platform. But it’s not a great communications tool any longer. Facebook has moved to a pay-to-play environment, meaning they have turned off what’s called “organic” reach and are asking us to pay money to reach fans (including our own). For the majority of public-service agencies, this is unrealistic.

That brings us to email and newsletters. Email has long been one of the most effective forms of digital communications. But let’s be honest — social media has distracted us a bit. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. We jumped at the opportunity to be cutting-edge, and rightfully so.

What’s cutting-edge now is to leave Facebook behind. Seriously. Ask your teenagers.

Email: Don’t call it a comeback

Here’s the one question we need to ask ourselves about Facebook: Who are we reaching? If we have 1,000 fans but can only reach 10% of them due to Facebook’s limited reach (hint, hint, see the presentation above), is that really worth the time investment we’re making to share information on Facebook? Paying a few bucks here and there to boost our posts is cheap and (kind of) works, but it adds up quickly.

On the other hand, if we invest our time and resources in building and nurturing an email list or newsletter with the same 1,000 people, we know we can reach everybody on that list whenever we hit send. Please keep in mind that we’re just talking about reach here (i.e. the number of people who actually “got” the message). On Facebook, we can reach 10% whereas on email we can reach close to 100% factoring out bounce-backs.

Of course, open rates and click-through rates are traditionally low on email, but not as low as on Facebook. At least with email we know we’re going to reach the audience. After that, it’s on us. We can work to improve subject lines, newsletter design, and content strategy. Those are things in our control.

On Facebook, we control very little. We can’t even reach our own fans. So it’s a matter of 10% reach on Facebook vs. 100% reach on email.

Those numbers are striking. We need an exit strategy for Facebook.

Our digital communications tour is in full swing! Over the last month we’ve visited Oakland, CA and Austin, TX, sparking conversations on the value of technology, outreach, and communications in government, as well as strategies to increase that value. We’ve hosted many innovative, successful speakers, from private sector thought leaders with successful social media start-ups to public sector communicators like yourselves working in state, city, and county government. Our speakers have presented on trends, strategies and tactics to connect with more stakeholders and inspire them to take action – online or offline – to drive mission value. tx-tour-14

But the tour isn’t over! In April, we’ll be taking our tour to three more cities, Raleigh, NC and Washington, D.C., before hosting our final stop in St. Paul, MN. If you haven’t already, make sure to register for the event in your city today, space is limited!

One of the best parts of the digital communications tour is the opportunity to listen to what other government communicators have to say about recent trends and what takeaways they find most important. Rather than synthesize those conversations into our own words, check out some of the snippets from Twitter during our last two tour stops and make sure to follow along with the hashtag: #GovD14.

Tweet-TX6 Tweet-TX5 Tweet-TX4 Tweet-TX3 Tweet-TX2 Tweet-TX Tweet-CA6 Tweet-CA5 Tweet-CA4 Tweet-CA3 Tweet-CA2

 

Tweet-CA1

Interested in attending an event in your city? Visit our registration pages for more information:

As consumers, we expect smooth and simple experiences from online retailers. In many cases, the same expectations occur in government. Federal and local governments have an opportunity to meet and exceed these expectations by using digital communications technology to its fullest potential.

The Presidential memorandum, “Digital Government: Building a 21st Century Platform to Better Serve the American People,” issued a pledge in May of 2012 to modernize digital technology in the public sector by March of 2013 as a result of rising citizen expectations along with a series of budget cuts that affected government customer service centers.

There is progress being made across individual government agencies that are making efforts to implement more effective communication technologies. MichiganDHS

The Michigan Department of Human Services (DHS) was recently faced with a challenge—poor economic conditions were increasing the load on its caseworkers, who provide financial, medical, heating, and food assistance through a system of about 100 offices distributed throughout the state. There was an influx of requests for assistance, and its current communications technology couldn’t handle it.

The organization was forced to innovate. Using cloud technology and modern customer management software, Michigan DHS developed an integrated voice-recognition service to increase the load its online system could manage.

Since then, the voice-recognition system has processed almost half a million phone calls without any caseworker involvement. Calls usually take an average of 5 minutes each, equating to several thousand hours being saved each month. Over 180,000 online applications have been received without the need for people to physically visit the office. These simple innovations have freed up caseworkers to focus on important tasks that require human attention, and give the Michigan DHS more resources to allocate wherever they might be needed. These improvements have actually let the Michigan DHS expand its operations.

The Michigan DHS didn’t do anything magical to enhance its communications system. Other public sector institutions can follow its success by making use of the 3 golden rules of customer service.

1) Optimize the technology that is being used. Cloud computing has become a great choice for high-quality services at a relatively low price, and according to a report from October 2013, about half of state and local governments are starting or planning to use the cloud. Out of these, 70% say they plan to use it for web applications; 60% say they’ll use it for cloud storage; and 40% say they’ll use it for email.

2) Offer good service. The public sector may never match the private sector when it comes to online user experience, but a good interface is really all that is needed. The key here is being able to resolve a citizen’s issue on the first call, something the Michigan DHS nailed with its voice-recognition system.

3) Be consistent across every channel of communication. Many organizations have different messages and protocols across different channels, something that is off-putting to a user. As the online experience improves more people are expected to use it as their preferred channel of communication.

By taking advantage of the multitude of communication technologies developed in the private sector, federal and local government organizations can vastly improve their customer service. Michigan DHS has shown that relatively simple changes can have a tremendous impact on outreach and effectiveness, providing a successful model that other agencies can follow.

national-nutrition-month

This post is a continuation from last month’s blog answering some of the questions we received during and following our Citizen Engagement webinar with insights from Ruthbea Clarke of IDC Government Insights and Mary Yang of GovDelivery.

In the last post, we were able to compile the responses to questions answered during the webinar. Here are some of the questions and answers that we weren’t able to address live during the webinar because of time constraints.

If you’d like to hear more of the presentation Ruthbea and Mary gave, watch the webinar here or read the Analyst Connections brief here. The questions have been edited in some cases for further clarification.

Q: How might we address the resistance within public sector departments to innovative outreach tools?
As the mandates to “do more with less” continue to permeate the public sector, more innovative and digital-focused approaches to outreach take hold, even in departments who may be resisting the move to digital communications. If you’re trying to put digital communications on the top of the agenda in your department, start by crunching some numbers. Digital communications can be a huge cost savings (by replacing paper processes) as well as a revenue generator (by enabling you to connect with more people and automate revenue-driven messages, such as “renew your hunting or fishing license now”). Check out our “Customer Satisfaction and E-Government ” white paper for more information on how digital communications can help achieve tremendous cost savings, while improving citizen satisfaction. This may provide you with some leverage to push your organization to use digital communications to meet mission goals. 

­Q: How much are citizens engaging with local governments’ social media posts?­

Social media can be a great tool to connect with your stakeholders in certain situations, but the extent your social media posts are read, commented on, and shared may vary. Oakland County, Michigan’s animal services team used both social media and email to send out stories of pets waiting for homes, and they saw an increase in adoption rates. On the other hand, at the Power of Reach tour stop in Oakland, folks from the City of Sacramento talked about using the website, blog and email more heavily to reach stakeholders when they noticed their Facebook account started seeing less engagement as Facebook changed its Newsfeed algorithms. Still, it’s difficult to ignore social media, even if it’s not going to be place where your citizens engage with you. At the end of the day, local governments are going to have to employ a multichannel approach to reach and engage citizens. For more information on engaging social posts, check out this blog post.

Q: Can you give some examples of broad attempts to engage the public in two-way communications about government topics?

One example of great two-way government-to-citizen communications is the Stearns County Sherriff’s Office (check out the new infographic on Stearns County here). Stearns County sends regular public updates embedded with buttons depicting different tip submission channels: Phone, Email, or Web. Each button redirects to the Sheriff’s Office phone number, email address, or an online tip submission tool. Just thirteen minutes after sending its inaugural message with GovDelivery, the Sheriff’s office received a tip. A simple email format with a clear, engaging call to action has empowered Stearns County residents to report information to their office, engaging in a two-way dialogue that results in better crime prevention. ChooseMyPlate

Other strategies you can employ to engage in two-way conversations online are to like your followers’ Facebook posts, retweet your followers, respond to YouTube comments, respond to Yelp reviews or survey results, reply to citizen emails and blog comments, all in a timely manner. Organizations like Choosemyplate.gov (see the image to the right) and Michigan DNR even host Twitter chats where they take the time to engage with their audience.

­Q: Regarding the security of cloud computing: is it more secure, about as secure or less secure than non-cloud alternatives?­
It’s going to depend on the software you’re using and how closely that technology is monitoring and following set security protocols. The best answer is, it depends. Legacy, on-site software can be vulnerable to security threats, just as cloud-based software can. The cybersecurity stories in government news over the past year can prove how true that statement is.

When you dive into the cloud computing realm, you should ask the tough security questions. And if you work with a government-focused partner, security should be a top issue. At GovDelivery, the security of our cloud platform is taken very seriously. We have achieved International Security Certification 270001 from the British Standards Institution as well as G-Cloud Security Accreditation level IL2 in the U.K. We serve clients from the Department of Homeland Security to the Department of Defense. By aligning our software with rigorous security certificates and programs, we safeguard cloud security.

Q: Does citizen contact information become subject to public record requests?­
This truly depends on where you are located. On a federal level, this kind of information has been protected as an exemption in the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

For states, there is no uniform policy, so this is something you may need to look into if you’re a local government employee. Many states have or are changing legislation to protect digital lists of citizen contact information, but some states have not yet broached the subject of digital records requests of this nature.

Do you have any other questions to add to the list? Comment below!

Citizen-Engagement-Webinar

We had an incredible flood of questions during and following our Citizen Engagement webinar last month with insights from Ruthbea Clarke of IDC Government Insights and Mary Yang of GovDelivery. So, we decided to compile some of those questions and their responses (including the ones we weren’t able to address live during the webinar) into a two-part blog post in order to pass along some of the information that was shared to the wider government communications community. If you’d like to hear more of the in-depth answers Ruthbea and Mary gave to some of the questions below, watch the webinar here or read the Analyst Connections brief here. The questions and answers from the webinar have been edited in some cases for further clarification.

Q: The speaker mentioned a centralized citizen database.  What kind of information would be contained there and how would it be collected?
Ruthbea: A lot of cities are collecting Census or other information from their citizens when they are signing up for email messages. By consolidating your information into one database of what’s already being collected and maybe not being updated regularly, you can ensure you’re reaching the people you want to reach and that they’re receiving the type of information most useful for them.

Q: You talked about how citizens are using mobile devices to get their updates/news more often than traditional computers/laptops. Is this going to be consistent within all age demographics or is it more generational?

Ruthbea: Digital inclusion and making sure you’re able to serve all the types of people you have is important for government organizations. When we look at people under the age of 30, they are consistently using mobile. This trend continues into those across ages 30 to 65. It’s mainly the upper echelon of the age demographics who are not using mobile as heavily. However, there is a large push for citizens across generations to access government services via the web that is taking hold and provides another digital method to reach a greater number of people. A lot of times what starts to happen when we discuss accessing government services via mobile devices, we find that across incomes, penetration is similar. Mobile devices are the great equalizer across income gaps.

Q: Are there any resources for those looking to create apps, but not knowing where to start? I’m not sure my IT department knows how to build apps.

Ruthbea: The more data that you open up to the public, the more you encourage individuals and private sector organizations to create apps and other solutions that will help your organization serve your stakeholders. By implementing hackathons or challenges in your organization, you can incent more people to create these types of solutions. Your organization simply provides the data and open APIs, then events like hackathons help to stimulate developer incentive.

Mary: Apps can be excellent tools to reach that younger audience, as Ruthbea mentioned earlier. But you shouldn’t look to build an app just to have an app. I’d encourage you to think through why an app would be a good tool for your organization or department. What’s the purpose of the app? How does that fit into delivering on your mission goals? What are the goals you’d want to reach with an app, and are those goals measurable?

Q: From a cost perspective, do you think the Cloud is less-costly, about as costly, or more costly than the more traditional non-Cloud technologies?

Ruthbea: Usually the cost difference is equal to or less than non-cloud alternatives, but there’s a completely different payment model with the cloud. There is a lot of softer values that are harder to measure in terms of cost and benefit. Government widely uses services like IT consultants and other outside sources to develop costly time-consuming projects. When you have consultants embedded in multiple departments, there is a lot of scope creep that often arises, and with the cloud you don’t have the same cost issues. Additionally the cloud sees faster deployment. And if you can get a service up and running quicker, that’s a savings. By using cloud technology, your organization also saves a lot on upgrades and maintenance costs.

Mary: Additionally, with cloud technology versus traditional technology implementations, you should think about the ‘total cost of ownership,’ often seen shortened as TCO. With more traditional, non-cloud technology, you have hardware costs that have to be factored into the software purchase, adding to the need for more IT staff time & resources and to scope creep.

­Q: Do you know of any small to mid-size municipalities that have a good strategy for citizen engagement and/or utilizing the Cloud?­
Ruthbea: The State of Indiana has a great cloud engagement strategy around energy efficiency. Additionally, mid-size cities like Boston and San Francisco have centralized innovation departments that are driving what’s happening around them. The key to making a successful citizen engagement strategy on the state and local government level is an executive sponsor. Most of these organizations with well-implemented strategies have some elected official that stresses its importance and puts his/her weight behind the initiative to bring people together across different departments.

Mary: GovDelivery does a lot of work in shared services. Oakland County, Michigan uses our cloud-based program to get information out around topics and services it offers, and also allows every township and municipality within the county to use that system. So there’s a mutually beneficial relationship within local government organizations to communicate better with their citizens, engage them, and get them to participate in events at every level. Stearns County, Minnesota is also working on a successful engagement model that is helping to get citizens to submit more crime tips. They have been able to use our cloud platform to increase crime prevention and encourage safer communities.

Q: ­Do you offer support to governments to build the “community” of citizens getting updates? What are those strategies?­
Mary: A few of the tips discussed in the webinar were foundational to building a community of citizens for outreach. Check out our Digital Outreach Best Practices Guide for more tips on building the community of citizens and their engagement with your organization.

Did you attend or watch a replay of the Citizen Engagement Webinar? Do you have any other questions to add to the list? Comment below!

Last week we hosted government communicators from across Northern California for our first Digital Communications Tour stop of 2014 in Oakland, California (look for our upcoming events near you in Austin, Raleigh, Washington D.C., and St. Paul). Government communicators took the Bay Area by storm to discuss communicating with more people and encouraging those people to take action as a result of those communications.

The tour featured a jam packed agenda of trends, tips and tricks. Steve Ressler of Govloop kicked off the event as our keynote to discuss 15 opportunities trending in the current government technology climate. Mary Yang and Amy Larsen of GovDelivery both talked to the importance of expanding the number of people you reach with your communications and how to go about starting to grow that impact. Jennifer Kaplan of GovDelivery expanded on that message by discussing increasing stakeholder engagement, or taking action as a result of your message.

Finally, we closed the event with what has always been one of our most popular sessions in the GovDelivery tour—our Government Communications Panel—where we discussed what local California government communicators are doing to improve and expand their digital outreach to better serve their stakeholders.

The panel of government communicators at the Oakland tour stop included Kristen Holland of San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), Beth Gabor of Yolo County, and Natasha Greer and Maurice Chaney of City of Sacramento.

Here are three of the many highlights of the panel—the lessons learned for these government organizations using digital communications to improve their outreach.

A New Website Design Enabled the City of Sacramento to Better Serve Resident Needs
The City of Sacramento recently launched a new website. One of the best practices they implemented when launching to better serve their residents was adding links to their social media accounts, blog and email sign-ups on every page of the website. By using the “create once publish everywhere” mentality to make sure that this important information is always in front of their stakeholders no matter where they get their messages from the city, Sacramento was also able to better communicate with stakeholders when their social media accounts started seeing less engagement. Additionally, the City of Sacramento linked robust analytics to its website to measure what information their visitors were most interested in reading to continue to tailor their content to stakeholder needs.

Real-time Alerts Enable SFMTA to Seamlessly Reach More People
SFMTA realized that what their audience wanted was real-time alerts from the organization on any transportation delays or updates. Beyond the 19,000 Twitter followers they have garnered, SFMTA is able to send those messages out via email and text messaging updates—taking some of the pressure off of the lead spokesperson by getting immediate information out to the media and the public with little effort.

Yolo County Prepares Residents for Flu Season Using Email Communications
Part of Yolo County’s mission involves the Yolo County Immunization Program, dedicated to improving immunization coverage rates and preventing the occurrence of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases (VPDs), with a special focus on children. So when flu season hit with four different strains occurring in the area, Yolo County held free flu clinics. Using email messages to communicate with its stakeholders, the County doubled attendance at these clinics from 400 to 800 people, making a large impact on its public health program goals for the Northern California county.

There was a lot of knowledge passed around during all of the Digital Communications Tour sessions and in the networking afterward. Over the next few months we’ll hold several more events where you can hear firsthand the strategies and tactics from more professionals and peers in the digital space. So sign up for one of our upcoming events in AustinRaleighWashington D.C., or St. Paul!

2014tour_eventbrite_banner

The Port of Tacoma was looking for a digital communications solution to deliver relevant information to its stakeholders, and increase the number of those stakeholders that it was able to quickly and easily reach. Using GovDelivery, the Port of Tacoma overcame challenges in deliverability, automation and integration with internal systems. The GovDelivery Communications Cloud is now a critical part of the port’s activities to help reach more people, and in turn, drive business for the organization. “As our port continues to grow, we look to GovDelivery to help us drive our business and engage with the public,” Megan Anderson, Communications Specialist at Port of Tacoma said. Today, the Port of Tacoma has grown its outreach to more than 15,000 people to whom they have sent over 614,000 messages.

The Port of Tacoma is one example of many organizations in state and local government that are increasing their number of stakeholder connections, and consequently, accomplishing specific organizational mission goals (like driving new revenue and business development).

At our 2014 Digital Communications Tour, which stops at five cities across the country this spring, you’ll have the opportunity to hear more stories from other government communicators talking to the “Power of Reach.” Have you ever wondered how reaching 10X as many people could amplify your organizational goals? Do you know how to connect with more people using everyday digital communication tactics? How can your organization compel more of your stakeholders to take action and engage with your organization as a result of your communications?

Hear from public sector experts and private sector thought leaders as they answer those questions with trends, tips and tricks that you can implement immediately.

Find a stop near you in the list below and register for this free event to learn more about what you can do to apply the “Power of Reach” to your organization’s digital communications.

 

By Amy Larsen, Client Success Consultant

When I talk with state and local government organizations that are interested in communicating more with the public, there is a usually a pretty consistent idea on what kinds of information should go out to citizens. Far and away the messages we see most frequently from state and local agencies include council and committee meetings and agendas, upcoming events, emergency updates, and news releases. These types of communications are vital to government transparency and community preparedness, and public information officers that are committed to the regular communication of these key types of information do their stakeholders an invaluable service.

But too often, public communication stops with these essential communications, without expanding the message topics to other departments and programs, where great stories are often hiding in plain sight. We often talk about why storytelling is a great asset in communicating – but what types of stories do your residents want to read?

I usually recommend that communicators consider including some new programs in their outreach plans every year, focusing on the offices or departments that have a high amount of interaction with the public. These regular communications help to drive more stakeholder participation and further the mission of each group.

Here are a few examples across the spectrum of state and local government of how both subscribers and departments benefit from storytelling:

1. Stories about Police and Law Enforcement Programs police1
I receive regular updates from my Precinct Inspector at the Minneapolis Police Department– the officer in charge of monitoring and preventing crime in my neighborhood. When I signed up for these updates, I had no idea that I had a Precinct Inspector, or what he did. Through regular communications from Inspector Schafer, I’ve gotten tips on keeping myself and my property safer, what to look for to prevent crime in my neighborhood, and have been alerted of criminal activity.  I’ve also learned that overall crime in my area is down by 7% this year. Before I received these updates, I had no visibility into how my neighborhood was functioning with regard to crime and law enforcement. Not only do these updates give me the information to be safer and more aware of potential risks to safety, but I feel more connected to my community and confident that my neighborhood is becoming a safer place to live. This direct communication with citizens is something that any police, Sheriff, or public safety department could achieve by implementing a subscription process that allows key communicators to reach a target audience of stakeholders.

2. Stories from Animal Control and Animal Rescue agencies animal1
Who doesn’t love stories about adorable dogs and cats? Some of the most visited sites on the web like Buzzfeed, Huffington Post and Reddit have been attracting explosive traffic for years using cute cat videos and stories about rescued puppies to lure people to land on their site and continue to click through to more pages. Why not harness these techniques to drive increased numbers of adopted animals and donations to local shelters in your community? Oakland County, Michigan began seeing an increase in adoption rates after their animal services team started communicating through email and social media about stories of pets waiting for homes.  San Diego County features a pet of the week update to people subscribed to their County News topic that often attracts hundreds of views in less than an hour, which is often more visits than the typical animal in a shelter gets in an entire day.  The City of Louisville, Kentucky created Paw Personals, a weekly newsletter from Animal Services with playful descriptions of animals waiting for homes to help alleviate overcrowding in shelters through more adoptions. If your animal services team is not communicating regularly to drive action, it might be time to think about how to incorporate the story of local animals into your regular messages to the public.

3. Stories from Health and Human Services organizations health1

Valuable health and safety communications often travel from public health organizations to hospitals and health providers to then disseminate to patients and visitors, but what about the residents who aren’t visiting health care providers regularly? How do they get the information they need to keep themselves and their families healthy? In Minnesota, we frequently deal with extreme cold, so this winter, the Minnesota Department of Health sent out extreme cold safety videos in multiple languages to hundreds of at risk residents, helping to increase the visibility of cold weather shelter programs. In Arizona, Maricopa County automatically alerts citizens if air quality levels reach a point that might be dangerous to residents in certain areas, keeping citizens with respiratory concerns safer. King County Public Health offers personalized SMS/text message updates on how residents can learn more about enrolling in health care by attending events in their neighborhoods. These are the awesome types of stories that can be shared with the public to demonstrate your organization’s commitment to health.  If your organization’s goals for this year include a focus on increased citizen well-being through health education and outreach, start by building a community of engaged stakeholders to connect with regularly through a multichannel communication approach, and share what you’re doing to keep them healthier.

When I talk with GovDelivery clients about setting their communication plans for this year, I often encourage them to think outside the box when it comes to the types of information they’ll be sending to their stakeholders. Where are the untold stories of your organization? What types of successes could be shared on a regular basis? Chances are, you won’t have to look far to find them.

Which messages coming from the public sector made the greatest impact in 2013? What topics saw increased interest from the public? Which government organizations reached more people than ever by networking with their peers?

Our year-in-review digital communications reports take a look at the 6 billion messages sent out by government organizations to sum up some of the best in public sector communications. In 2013, over 1,000 government organizations directly reached more than 60 million people (that’s 20 million more people than last year) through digital communications. Take a look at the sneak peek below of some of the top messages sent to these millions of people or check out the full reports hereInfographic sneak peek

State and Local Trending TopicsIn state and local government messages, the outdoors, legislature, local employers, and energy effi­ciency were hot topics among people signing up to receive information from organizations.

Federal Citizen/Customer EngagementAmong federal agency communications, the Securities & Exchange Commission, FoodSafety.gov, Federal Aviation Administration, Department of Justice, and the Veterans Health Administration saw some of the highest message engagement with their constituents.

UK & Europe Messages that the Public SharedIn UK and Europe communications, vehicle taxes and recalls, Mars, energy efficiency, and weather related messages were shared the most by the public with their friends.

Want to see more trends from public sector communicators and their audiences in 2013? Check out our infographics page for the full reports: http://bit.ly/GD-infographics.

%d bloggers like this: