Over the last few days I have been pulling together (with some help from my family) some facts and figures about the use of Facebook and Twitter by UK Fire and Rescure Services.
The table below shows figures for 20 authorities for whom I could find an official Facebook page and an official Twitter page (at least pages I think were official). The table shows how many people follow them on Twitter and how many like their Facebook page and the data are ranked by the sum of the two data columns.
Although there is clearly a relationship between the two columns, the relationship is less strong/linear than perhaps might have been expected, the product moment correlation coefficient is just over 0.6, which means the two columns share about 40% of their variance. One of the big outliers is South Yorkshire who either have fewer Facebook followers than their Twitter presence would suggest, or have a much stronger Twitter presence than their Facebook numbers woudl suggest.
However, one should perhaps not spend to long looking at the relative rankings of the services, but question the overall values. Hampshire has a population of about 1.3 million people, over half of whom are likely to be users of Facebook, to a tally of 8314 users means that about 1 out of every 100 Facebook users in Hampshire likes their page. In Kent, the third highest in the table, the figures are something like 3 in every 1000 Facebook users.
Whislt all the services should be praised for starting to tackle the challenge of Facebook and Twitter, and the ones at the top end of the table are clearly doing best of all, there is a need to devise strategies that would see these numbers to rise by a magnitude of 10 or even 100. UK retailer Next has over 500,000 people liking their page, so it ought to be possible to see the best Fire & Rescue services with more than 100,000 people liking them, IMHO.