Twitter signs up Hill+Knowlton to handle its communication matters in Kenya

Digital Content

Social media platform Twitter has signed up Hill and Knowlton Strategies Kenya (H+K) to handle its communication needs in the country and help with its engagement with media as well as bloggers.

The deal means that instead of only relying on the Twitter blog for updates about the platform, journalists and bloggers now have an additional avenue for getting news and updates about the company.

Twitter's engagement with Hill and Knowlton Kenya started from January this year. Twitter is among the most popular social media platforms in the country alongside Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and Vine.

An article published in Ventures Africa in early July 2014, stated that 4 million Kenyans (roughly 10 percent of the population) daily engage in social media activities with 570 million tweets expected by the end of 2014 and more than 50 thousand new twitter accounts predicted at the same period of time.

The article quoted figures from a research done by The Digital Rand titled “The State of Social Media in Kenya” whose results were released in July 2014.

In terms of user numbers between the various social media platforms, the article states: “Facebook dominates Kenya’s social media with 3.8 million users. Far behind them is Linkedin with 1.5million users, Twitter with 650,000 users and Google+ with 350,000.”

It adds that Twitter for Android is the most popular mobile applications with the social media network’s growth peaking between 2012 and 2013, with about 100,000 new users signing up during this period, reportedly due to the 2013 general elections as numerous politicians got online and campaigned via social media.

However, it seems that after the elections, most of the Twitter accounts became dormant.

“But Twitter currently suffers huge 65 per cent dormancy rate in Kenya; 19 per cent of Kenyans on Twitter have not tweeted in 2014. LinkedIn is actually worst hit with this dormancy; it has the highest number of inactive users, closely followed by Google+. Most of the social media activity is centred in Kenya’s capital and largest city Nairobi, 74 per cent of Kenyans on Twitter stay there while the next largest base is from the Diaspora at 11 per cent,” states the article.

To further its engagement with Kenyans even before it can formally establish its presence in the country, Twitter has also set up a handle specifically for Kenya - @TwitterKenya – which currently has 1,475 followers. The account was created on February 2, 2015.

Other African countries where the firm has set up such handles are Nigeria (@TwitterNigeria with 843 followers) and South Africa (@TwitterSA with 184 followers).

Apart from its global headquarters in US, Twitter's other international offices are found in Amsterdam, Berlin, Dublin, Gurgaon, London, Madrid, Mumbai, Paris, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Singapore, Sydney, Seoul, Tokyo, Toronto and Vancouver.

Source: CIO East Africa 4 February 2015