We have asked several foreign ministries to answer some questions about their #DigitalDiplomacy. Here’s a guest post from the Foreign Ministry of Peru.
Which is/are your preferred social media channel(s) and why?
Facebook and Twitter are the main social communication media we use. Being major digital interaction channels, both Facebook and Twitter allow us to gauge the reception to the information we post every day. Thus, we are able to assess our institution’s image and, through thorough and continued work on these social networks, improve the public’s perception of it. The current Peruvian Minister of Foreign Affairs prefers the use of Twitter, as she considers it a useful tool to reach Peruvian communities abroad, as well as to publicize the Ministry´s public services and the work our diplomatic and consular missions carry out worldwide.
How do you and your team manage your social media presence?
The Communications Office is a medium-sized team comprised of journalists and communications experts. One of such professionals is the administrator of our Twitter and Facebook accounts, and he is in charge of posting updates on the Ministry´s daily activities, as well as the work done by our diplomatic and consular missions, and our decentralized offices located throughout the country. In addition, we produce multimedia graphics to provide more accessible information regarding our country’s participation in key international meetings. Currently, our Facebook account has 58,622 “likes” and our Twitter account 128,419 followers. One hundred and six of our missions have a presence in Facebook and thirty-four are on Twitter.
Please, share an example of your best campaign/engagement on social media.
A couple of months ago, we launched a campaign to promote the signing of the short-stay visa waiver agreement between Peru and the European Union. Our campaign focused on the benefits of this agreement, such that our slogan was “Being Peruvian opens the doors to the world”. As part of the campaign, we produced a video titled “Europe without visa” which has until date more than a million and a half viewers via Facebook; likewise, our hashtags for the campaign—both in Spanish and in English—became trending topics on Twitter.
How do you measure success on social media?
While the numbers of “likes” and followers on our social networks are certainly direct and reliable measures of success, the comments and feedback we receive on our posts are also valuable to us in this regard. We receive around 20 inquiries per day on our Facebook and Twitter accounts. Some of those are simple questions concerning administrative procedures; others are more complex. Our embassies and consulates receive a similar number of inquiries on their social network accounts as well, and, like us, they always ensure they give rapid and accurate responses. This interaction with other users of social media helps us find what people are looking for when they visit our page; thus, we can provide more accessible and relevant information to them, and ensure our message reaches a broader audience.
By Carlos Chávez-Taffur, Chief of the General Office of Communication, Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Peru (@CancilleriaPeru)