MEPs online: survey

Fleishman-Hillard published the results of their EP Digital Trends Survey earlier this week, exploring European Parliamentarians’ use of the web from two perspectives: first, their own actual outgoing communications; and second, their use of the web as a research and learning tool.

The figure which most stood out for me is that 93% of MEPs use search engines every day. That many of these then go on to claim they do not read blogs doesn’t really matter. I doubt many would discard a good blog that appears top of the search rankings (maybe they wouldn’t even identify it as a blog..?) Further proof (as if any were needed) that organisations should make good quality online content (and a search strategy) core elements of their communications.

Some observations on other findings in the report:

  • “62% of MEPs have either never heard of Twitter or have no plans to use it” – Wonder if any respondents both said they’d never heard of it AND thus wouldn’t dream of using it. Hope not.
  • “80% of MEPs believe websites to be either very effective or effective in communicating to voters, making websites as effective as one-on-one meetings” – So 1 in 5 still don’t think websites work? Not surprising, but I had hoped this might have been more like 1 in 20. I’ll always remember the MEP who last year told me that he “didn’t believe in the Internet” but I thought the Obama effect would have changed that sort of attitude to a greater extent.
  • “51% of MEPs believe blogging or micro-blogging to be very effective or effective in communicating to voters” – Considering how alien blogging still is to many, this is a good figure. Hope it’ll be more like 90% come 2014. Communicating in you own voice directly to your constituents, for free, whenever you want and wherever you have an Internet connection? What’s not to love?

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