Sinatou Saka, Editorial Project Manager & Specialised Journalist at RFI & France 24 spoke about using WhatsApp to connect to listeners. She uses a simple format of a short message, interactive format and makes sure it is relaxed in its tone – even using emojis. It’s also about finding out how your audience regularly communicates – voice notes, she points out, are booming in Africa because people may not be able to write in French or English as well as they can speak.
Matt Adams, Audience Engagement at NPR talked about how NPR are using social audio through Twitter spaces to interact with their audience. Spaces is a fairly new tool at less than a year old. He compares spaces to be like a call in format on radio with the audience making the conversations. It reaches younger audiences and also more diverse audiences. You can record the content and rebroadcast it somewhere else and it’s a brilliant space to generate ideas. It also works particularly well to give local reporters a chance to have their voices heard and bring in new perspectives.
There are some key takeaways to be successful in engaging your audience. Find an interesting topic, have bullet points but don’t script and go to Q&A early.
“By going to Q&A early it ensures that the space is a natural conversation and fully works with your audience.”
The main thing to remember is to go to your audience and meet them where they are. If your audience uses Whatsapp then you need to be there too, if they use Twitter then meet them there