UNT pendlingskollen - building journalistic eco systems using social media
Overview of this campaign
Upsala Nya Tidning (UNT) is a regional newspaper in Upsala, the fourth largest city in Sweden. One of our biggest challenges the recent years has been the struggle to keep on being important to the people of Uppsala despite the fact that the competition over the readers time and interest has increased tremendously. Everyday we work really hard to be important for our community. One part of that work is to find the areas truly relevant to our readers, and find subjects where we can make a difference with our journalism.
In the late autumn of 2017 we found out that the commuters of Uppsala (aprroximately 15 000 of the communitys 200 000 citizens) had a hard time getting back and forth to work in Stockholm. And their tough experiences didn’t match with the official picture given by the statistics of punctuality from the railway companys.
At the same time we had realised that Facebook had changed the algorithm, we experienced declining organic reach for our official Facebook page, and realised that Facebook encouraged the use of groups, giving them better reach. We begun to think a lot on how to use groups, and find subjects that could fit.
We realised that the concerns of the commuters and the use of Facebook groups could be a great match. So we gave it a try…
Results for this campaign
We created the group in december 2017. As of now we have 775 members, increasing every day. We have been able to find ”inside information” in realtime, instead of having to put a reporter on to a train every day we have been able to just take a look in the group to report on delays and overcrowded rail cars. We have been able to find storys that we probably would have discovered several hours later, (or never) instead we get them directly. Like when a train was actually going the wrong way, transporting people backwards to a city very far from Uppsala. The group members that told us about that became the winners of our contest ”monthly tipser”.
One month after we started the group, 15-20 articles later, the problems have been attended to by politicians, bringing attention to the problems in debate articles and calling on responsible actors for hearings. The VP of the train company SJ has now announced they acutely decides to increase the number of rail cars, with an increase in seats by 400 on each train Uppsala-Stockholm in peak commuting hours.
The creation of UNT Pendlingskollen has given us the chance to become a natural part of our readers daily life, fullfilling their needs and in the long run strengthening the brand, creating engaged and devoted readers who feels that we are on their side struggling with them for their best.
The best part of it (besides increasing traffic from facebook to www.unt.se and getting many new paying subscribers) is that we now actually have managed to create a small but real eco system consisting of devoted readers and us and our journalism. UNT pendingskollen has really given us a way to become not only ”superlocal” but also ”superclose” to our readers.
Here you find the group: facebook.com/groups/UNTpendlingskollen