North Yorkshire Police is this week celebrating reaching 100,000 followers on Facebook.
The police force is celebrating by releasing a video to say thank you to its followers for helping to solve crime, track down wanted criminals, spreading awareness of important causes, bringing missing people safely home and much more.
They started using social media in 2009 with the launch of their Twitter account and since then they have made extensive use of it for community engagement, publicising crime prevention advice, appealing for witnesses to crimes and other incidents.
Their three main corporate social media accounts now have over 200,000 followers combined with 94,100 Twitter followers, 11,400 Instagram followers and now 100,000 Facebook followers.
In addition, the force has a network of over 100 additional Twitter accounts and 30 additional Facebook pages which are managed by a wide variety of neighbourhood policing teams, individual officers, staff, volunteers, and specialist departments. These have anything from a few dozen to several thousand followers.
Commenting on reaching the milestone on Facebook ACC Phil Cain (@ACCPhilCain) said:
“Social media is an invaluable tool for our force which enables us to reach hundreds of thousands of people very quickly.
“It is particularly powerful for distributing crime prevention messages, sharing missing people appeals, highlighting road traffic collisions and requesting information to assist with our investigations.
“In the majority of cases one of the most effective ways of finding this information is via social media.
“Having so many social media followers is like having thousands of extra eyes and ears in the community acting on our behalf.
“We’re extremely proud to reach 100,000 followers on Facebook and would like to take this opportunity to thank every single one of our followers who take the time to like, share and comment on our posts.
“Day in and day out our followers help us to make a difference in North Yorkshire – we couldn’t do it without them.”
Along with urgent missing person appeals, updates on investigations and requests for information, some of the most popular posts on the force’s Facebook account over the last year have included:
- Announcements about the latest recruitment drives for the Force Control Room and Police Officers
- A job well done by one of the force’s police dogs
- A thank you to the girl who left a gift for officers on Christmas Day
- Partnership working in the snow
- A get well soon post to one of the force’s colleagues
- A request to help identify a man’s next of kin
- An attempt to reunite stolen items with their owners
- An announcement about the launch of the force’s new, interactive, online, urban-adventure game
- A picture to show the latest addition to the Roads Policing Group fleet.
Over the years, the force’s use of digital media has also received widespread national, and in some cases, international recognition including:
- The force won “Best Digital Communications Team” and “Best Digital Communications Professional” in the comms2point0 Awards2015.
- Two of the forces crime prevention campaigns have also been recognised – digital communications campaigns for ‘responsible drinking’ and ‘property marking’ were both finalists in the UK Public Sector Communications Awards2016.
- Viral international coverage of two of the force’s police dogs being reunited with their handler
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