Düsseldorf. The final section of the survey covered the preferred means of communication through which respondents wished to be informed of news concerning the International Youth Convention. The Communications planning group is already using three methods of communication: Facebook, the internet website and the app.
Around 94 percent of the youth aged between 12 and 19 in Germany communicate regularly through WhatsApp, according to a 2017 study released in the press. In comparison, 67 percent of the IYC 2019 survey results revealed the wish for communication through WhatsApp. Other options are Facebook and Snapchat.
Facebook for the “older” youth
According to Facebook itself, it has around 2 billion users, of which 1.3 billion have daily access, which confirms the easy and economical advantages of the social network for those interested in receiving daily news.
Facebook seems to appeal largely to the 18 to 24 year olds. Around 64 percent want to use Facebook as their communication means. Facebook, in the German language, has already been in use for the IYC since June 2017 and has reached more than 750 “likes”. 58 percent of its followers are aged between 13 and 34, of which a mere 5 percent are between 13 and 17 years of age (as at November 2017).
A new direction with WhatsApp and Snapchat
The survey showed that 68 percent of the 11 to 17 year old participants preferred to communicate through WhatsApp. WhatsApp is a cost-free instant messenger, where messages and data can be sent in real time. The messenger particularly lends itself for transmission between mobile devices.
One of the features which interested the Communications project group was the WhatsApp broadcast, where a uni-directional communication link to participants is possible – in similarity to a newsletter. In order to use this feature the sender and receiver require to know each other’s mobile number.
Around 41 percent of the 11 to 17s would like to use Snapchat. Its messenger is mainly used for the exchange of photos, which are only visible to the recipient for a short time period. Only 18 percent of the age group 18 to 24 and 4 percent of the 25 to 34 age group showed a preference for this communication means.
The internet is the basis for communication
The need for information to be passed via the internet website remains essential, because the complexity of such processed information can be better managed and overseen. 53 percent of all respondents would prefer to use the IYC website and 41 percent the IYC app.
The ICY app can be downloaded in the Google Play Store and in the Apple Store. All reports and information about the IYC are currently available via the website. Further features have already been planned.
Twitter and RSS feeds not in demand
Updates can also be sent in the form of a newsletter by email. Around 38 percent of all participants preferred to use this means of communication. Other responses from the survey added further channels of communication to the list, with names like Instagram or Youtube. These methods are also being used successfully by many district Churches of the New Apostolic Church. Their success can be measured by the numbers of hits and positive feedback responses.
The advantages in using social networks are, above all, apparent in their coverage: people all over the world can be kept informed with little resources. The Communications project group will continue to examine these results and update news through the internet website, Facebook and, where possible, other channels of communication.