What Our Facebook Fans and Twitter Followers Told Us

Over the past few months, we’ve been working to improve the White House’s social media presence to provide our Facebook fans and Twitter followers with timely, relevant and interesting updates about what’s happening at the White House and around the Administration.

We’ve recently conducted surveys of the White House’s Facebook fans and Twitter followers asking for their feedback on our online programs. Between the two surveys, we received thousands of responses and thought we’d share some of the results.

This wasn’t a scientific survey. The results reflect the opinions of those who took the time to respond to our posts and tweets and to complete the survey, and this kind of feedback is really helpful. We’ll be using this information to help improve and guide the efforts of our online program in the upcoming weeks and months.

If you haven’t already, don’t forget to join us on Facebook at Facebook.com/Whitehouse and on Twitter at @Whitehouse

Here are a few interesting things we’ve learned:  

  • 50% of Facebook survey respondents were over the age of 50, with another 35% between 35 and 49. Our Twitter audience is younger, with only 32% of respondents over the age of 50. A combined 62% are over the age of 35. 
     
  • 62% reported visiting our Facebook page at least once a week. However, 93% say they read tweets from us at least once a week.
     
  • A much larger percentage of our Twitter survey respondents are active on Facebook (80% of Twitter followers use Facebook weekly) than our Facebook respondents reported being active on Twitter (30% of Facebook fans use Twitter weekly).
     
  • Over 50% of respondents from both surveys reported never using Flickr, LinkedIn and social bookmarking sites (such as Digg, Reddit, and Delicious). 
     
  • 64% said that the frequency of our Facebook posts is “About Right,” with 31% wanting more, and only 5% saying that it’s “Too Much.” 
     
  • 61% of the Twitter survey respondents report that the frequency of posting is “About Right,” with an additional 35% saying it’s “Not Enough,” and only 4% saying that it’s “Too Much.” 
     
  • Over 56% share White House Facebook posts on a monthly basis and 78% have shared at least once. However, only 35% of responders report retweeting @Whitehouse on at least a monthly basis, with only 58% having retweeted us at least once.
     
  • The top requested content includes news-oriented posts (Breaking News, the latest news from the Administration), interactive posts (ways to engage with Administration officials, announcement of live streams, quotes from major speeches as they happen) and the Photo of the Day. 

Most people are happy with the White House Facebook page and Twitter feed, but we received numerous useful suggestions.

Here’s a few ways we were told we could improve:

Facebook

“Add a ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ area to answer most questions”

“Please provide more notice for live streaming events. They are great, but only if you get to see them.”

Twitter

“I appreciate the idea behind tweeting quotes from speeches as they are given, but it might be better served on a Twitter account created just for that purpose. I receive White House tweets via SMS and multiple tweets, and repetition gets a little annoying.”

"It's been a while since a presidential advisor held twitter chat session or something where we could ask questions during a video chat session.” 

And here are some things people liked:

Facebook

“Thank you for entering Facebook and other social networks. It is "time" for the government to realize how much internet is used today. I am grateful for White House's public involvement in this fashion.”

 “I really liked the virtual town hall on Facebook.”

Twitter

“Love the informal, behind-the-scenes stuff. Nice to know there's a good man, woman and family leading our free nation.”

“Great job with this. Happy to see this Administration taking advantage of the unique aspects social media presence to interact with public and practice greater transparency.”

Don’t forget, in addition to Facebook and Twitter, you can also stay updated on the latest White House news by signing up to receive email updates from President Obama and other senior officials.

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