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Facebook: a municipal page boosts citizen ratings

Towns discover that having a municipal page on Facebook improves citizen satisfaction. A survey shows that local Facebook pages strengthen the municipality's reputation and local democracy.


Citizens love municipal Facebook pages, according to a survey among users of 19 municipal pages in Denmark. Not only are most people satisfied with the pages, but the good experience is having positive knock-on effects: people see the municipality in a more positive light and they are willing to engage more in local democracy.

Facebook boosts reputation

Local Government Denmark found that four out of five respondents said they were satisfied or very satisfied with their municipality Facebook page; half of users reported a more positive perception of the municipalities because of the pages. They said the Facebook presence made the municipality look more open, modern and service-minded.

The survey concludes that Facebook pages give municipalities a reputation boost which otherwise would cost the municipalities a small fortune to obtain through normal advertising.

Facebook strengthens democracy

The survey also shows that Facebook pages strengthen local democracy. Nearly three-quarters of people believe that the pages give them a better opportunity to participate in public debate about policy and municipal programmes. More than half of people thought they had a better understanding of local politics while 40 percent felt they had better contact with local politicians.

It appears that Facebook can reach new audiences, including people who would not normally look for news from the municipality and citizens who have not previously been politically active.

More citizens are given a voice

One third of the respondents in the survey did not read local news or get a local newsletter. Through a municipal Facebook page they now receive regular news and information about their local area.

Through Facebook, many citizens (14 percent of respondents) are speaking out on local issues for the first time, either participating in political debate or highlighting problems with public services. Facebook also gives them quick access to other citizens’ and politicians’ positions on hot topics.

“Through Facebook, many citizens are speaking out on local issues for the first time”

Summary of benefits

  • Facebook is the primary communication channel for many citizens

  • Facebook lowers the bar to participation

  • A Facebook presence enhances a municipality’s reputation for openness, dialogue and customer service

Next steps

Fancy Facebook? Analyse your municipality’s digital maturity and readiness for social media or play our social media game.

Further reading

  • Guidelines for Facebook – Karlstad

  • Download the full survey report (in Danish) – please visit the website of Local Government Denmark

Web links


Birgitte Städe, Communication Consultant, Høje-Taastrup Municipality, Denmark. Email:

Birgitte Städe has been leading the Opening Up project in Høje-Taastrup and has worked with colleagues to launch Høje-Taastrup on social media, primarily the municipality’s official Facebook-page.