1. Britain First’s Facebook page now reaches millions of people a week, giving it a bigger audience than some national newspapers.
The Facebook page of the British National Party splinter group has exploded in popularity during the last four weeks, gaining over 230,000 likes in the last month to take it to a total of 336,000 fans.
That’s mainly thanks to an incessant stream of extremely popular posts that mix Islamophobia with pro-military memes and messages proclaiming love for the monarchy.
All this leaves Britain First, which is standing candidates in Wales and Scotland for the forthcoming EU elections, as by far by the most popular UK political party on Facebook, with more fans than the Conservatives and Labour combined. Even UKIP, which has been crowing over the success of its social media strategy, can’t hold a candle to this lot.
During the last week millions of UK residents will have been exposed to a piece of Britain First content – more than buy physical copies of newspapers such as The Independent or The Guardian in any seven day period.
3. Why has this happened? Well, Britain First is very, very good at creating a certain sort of viral content.
Britain First could give the other parties a lesson in political messaging on Facebook: they have a clarity of message, use simple designs and rely emotive content.
As for what they’re actually preaching, well that’s another matter. But analysis of the recent posts suggests fans of Britain First are five times more likely to engage with Britain First on Facebook than fans of more mainstream political parties.
5. Whether this online support translates into actual votes is a different matter.
The party has already been chastised for registering “REMEMBER LEE RIGBY”, a reference to the English soldier murdered by Islamic extremists, as an official party slogan, against the wishes of Rigby’s family.
- On August 4th, 2011, the death of Mark Duggan — an unarmed black man — at the hands of police officers in north London sparked nationwide riots.