UK Government mobilises digital diplomacy as G8 approaches

UK Government mobilises digital diplomacy as G8 approaches

UK Government mobilises digital diplomacy as G8 approaches

When it comes to digital diplomacy, the UK government is considered one of the best in class. The FCO have created an online media machine that includes twitter, blogs, storify, flickr, YouTube channels and more which has gone into overdrive for G8.

We have picked some of the areas where their approach highlights principles which other nations can learn from:

Mobilising platforms

The Foreign Office and UK Government have mobilised their digital assets to spread the G8 messages far and wide. The #G8UK tag has been used as far back as April 2013 consistently by the various twitter profiles

The most mentioned and most active over the last month are:

  • @G8
  • @Number10gov
  • @cabinetofficeuk
  • @foreignoffice
  • @Number10press
  • @socimpactbonds
  • @ukineu
  • @HCPeterJones
  • @CassVinograd
  • @jduncanFCO
  • @ukinlebanon

On message

Despite the large number of platforms, the three priorities of the UK’s G8 presidency – Tax, Trade and Transparency – have been continually reinforced and pushed to international audiences over the last few months. The G8 presidency has been put at the centre of UK diplomacy, acting as an umbrella for a host of initiatives that help counteract the idea that the G8 is ‘just a two-day get together’.

Consistent messaging is all important, but it has to be brought to life with engaging content. The FCO have done this with photographs, video, live content from events as well as by creating infographics which bring the issues on the agenda to life.

Great content builds expectations. The G8 factsheet released yesterday received 50+ retweets. However, some were not afraid to express dissatisfaction when faced with conventional collateral.


Embassies across the world from Italy to Azerbaijan, through Canada to South Africa, have lined up to tweet and spread the word. Language is not a barrier with customised content produced in multiple languages.

The FCO’s approach shows that being consistent, creating diverse content and taking the time to localise engagement should be at the heart of digital diplomacy for any nation.

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