Index de l'article

Strengths and weaknesses

Table 1. Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and challenges



Highly cost effective 

Simultaneously reaches large numbers of people 

Location and client specific, problem-oriented 

User-generated content and discussion among the community of members 

Easily accessed from mobile phones 

Increases internet presence of extension organisations and their client reach 

Democratisation of information 

Brings all RAS stakeholders onto a single platform 

Can measure impact and success by tracking number of visitors, friends, followers, mentions, Facebook ‘likes’, conversation index, and number of shares  

Limited ICT and online facilities in rural areas 

Only suitable for educated and online clientele 

Lack of awareness and readiness to accept social media by some farmers and extension professionals 

Internet privacy issues 

Relevancy of information 

Success of social media depends on commitment level of community of members in using social media for RAS 

Information overload

Opportunities Challenges

Few social media apps are available without internet. 

Forming local/regional interest groups is possible 

Reaching one to many 

Greater engagement and dialogue 

Allows for integration of a wide range of stakeholders 

Can act as catalyst for resource mobilisation (technological, organisational, and financial) 

Quality control and monitoring of posts 

Ensuring participation 

Internet and IT infrastructure issues 

Satisfying heterogeneous users 

Institutionalising social media 

Continuous engagement 

Skilled human resource to maintain social media 

Measuring the impact – lack of capacity for tools and analytics that help monitoring and assessing the value of information 

Creating awareness about social media’s potential at the organisational level 

Allocating time to update content 

Encouraging stakeholders to access resources through social media links


Best-fit considerations

Target audience: Social media are useful for extension professionals and educated farmers, especially young people, who have online access, and also other RAS actors (input and market personnel, researchers, administrators, policy-makers, etc.). 

Innovations: Social media tools help facilitate the free flow of information, knowledge, and creativity, enabling innovations by different stakeholders of RAS. Social media is ideal to inform, share, create awareness, and mobilise extension professionals, farmers, and other RAS stakeholders in the shortest possible time.

Ecological and institutional settings: Social media works best for institutions and individuals with better ICT availability and access.