This week we spoke in Scotland to an audience of public sector communications people. Here are some stats as to why it's a really good place to be working in comms and PR right now.
by Dan Slee
If you are in Scotland and working in public sector communications you are the envy if your peers from across the UK.
For a start, you stage large scale elections where large numbers of people turn out to vote without the shadow of hanging chads.
But you also have more people in Scotland consuming the media TV, radio, web, social media than anywhere else in the UK.
I was in Hamilton where local government’s National Communications Group Scotland are staging the ‘Winning at Social Media’ event. Carolyne Mitchell, Leah Lockhart and Kristoffer Boesen was on the agenda and Stephen Penman chaired. They are people I rate. Every time I go to an event in Scotland I head back fizzing with the ideas, energy and the potential the people have there.
Here are some bullet points from the 2014 Ofcom communications market report that should be at the fingertips of every comms person working in Scotland.
- People in Scotland are taking up smartphones at a faster rate than any other UK nation. Take-up has risen by 17 percentage points in a year to 62 per cent in 2014, in line with the UK average of 61 per cent.
- Consumers in Scotland also spent the equivalent of 2 hours 24 minutes communicating – by email, text, social networks, instant messaging and voice calls.
- When people are communicating they are three times as likely to do this by text rather than voice.
- By the beginning of 2014, 42 per cent of households owned a tablet, such as an iPad or Kindle Fire, an 18 percentage point annual increase.
- Broadband take-up rose by six percentage points in a year to 76 per cent, just below the K average of 77 per cent.The take-up of broadband in Glasgow has also increased year on year.
- The percentage of Glaswegians living in households with broadband (excluding mobile devices) is 63 per cent and 66 per cent if mobile devices are included. This compares to 50 per cent and 54 per cent respectively in Ofcom's 2013 Communications Market Report.
- Eight in 10 homes in Scotland now have internet access while the use of mobiles to access the internet increased by 12 percentage points - the biggest increase of the UK nations bringing Scotland to 56 per cent (8 the internet per week, slightly less than the UK average of 16 hours 54 minutes. However, this represented a significantly greater amount of time using the internet outside the home, workplace, or place of education than users in Wales or Northern Ireland.
- People in Scotland spent 39 per cent of their daily media and communications time watching TV on a TV set - marginally higher than the UK average of 37 per cent.
- Ten per cent of media time was spent using a radio set, with use of this device being most popular in the morning.
- People are happiest with their mobile provider in urban areas. But at 82 per cent people who live in rural areas are the happiest anywhere in Britain. Happy people outnumber the very dissatisfied by eight to one.
So, if social media isn’t a part of the communications mix it needs to be. And if anyone anywhere tries to tell you otherwise show them these statistics. Well done to the organisers, to Carolyne Mitchell, National Communications Group and South Lanarkshire Council for hosting.
Dan Slee is co-founder of comms2point0.