Facebook, Snapchat, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram…. If you are not on any of these networks, then you are part of the third of French people who are still reluctant (or not old enough) to start. In this article, I propose a focus on the uses and trends in Reunion Island. The French department is indeed not spared by the phenomenon, even if differences with the surrounding islands are to be noted.
The people of Reunion are increasingly connected
As usual, some figures are easy to collect via the networks’ advertising tools, but for others, it is complicated to get an idea. The main reason is that Reunion is sometimes considered as a country, sometimes as a French region… often too small to be really identified. This observation can also be applied to Mauritius and other “small” territories. Still, with the figures available, we can draw some interesting conclusions.
With about 500,000 registered users (out of 850,000 inhabitants), Facebook is by far the largest network in Reunion Island. It affects all segments of the population, from 13 years to (much) older.
More trendy, Instagram is going back up in its use and 170 000 Reunionese use it regularly.
LinkedIn, with nearly 100,000 professionals registered on the island, has definitely supplanted Viadeo (the sector’s French competitor, which is slipping) as the number one pro social network.
Although we don’t have any figures on the use of Snapchat in Reunion Island, we can’t help but notice that it is widely adopted by the youngest (13-25 years old). It offers a more dynamic and private alternative to Facebook for this audience.
Finally, Twitter has always had a hard time establishing itself on the intense island, but remains well used in the technophile, journalistic and political spheres.
Companies invest in them
Initially reluctant, the “Pei” companies have finally invested in the networks. At least, especially Facebook.
A few years ago, the question was “should a business have a Facebook page?”. Today, it’s more like “How do I get an effective one?
Reunionese brands have understood the importance of being present on social networks. There is no shortage of examples, whether it is brands looking for notoriety or companies working on acquiring qualified leads.
Important issues for companies
There is still a lot of work to be done in my opinion. There are 3 main challenges for companies in Reunion that I have identified.
The first is technological. For example, the use of chatbots to create conversations and boost conversion. Still in its infancy here, these features can really boost engagement, if of course they are implemented correctly.
The second is graphic. The use of impactful and innovative visual content is the key to successful communication. 360 photos, videos (with motion design), GIFs, Facebook live… So many formats that users appreciate, but which require specific skills.
The third is strategic. Running a Facebook page or Instagram account requires specific editorial strategies. Network users must perceive that the messages they see have been designed for the platform. Language codes, writing styles, types of messages: it is important to differentiate between networks to encourage real engagement and strengthen the link between brands and their communities.
Reunion Island is clearly a land of social networks. The people of Reunion are active in this area and the brands know it. From a few freelancers and agencies in 2011, we have grown to dozens of professionals who can assist brands in the proper use of these platforms. The multiplication of functionalities and the level of requirement of the contents led to an increase in the level of competences and specializations (digital strategy, community management, contents, advertising…). The key for companies is to find the right partner who will help them achieve their goals in the most appropriate way.