This summer I was asked by Tim Moore to speak at SocialCrush, a nuts and bolts social business conference for small to medium sized companies. Tim asked me if I could talk about how PR has changed because of social media, along with the things businesses need to consider in doing PR in this new environment.
At its core, PR really hasn’t changed much. We are still an industry of communication. It’s only the tools and opportunities for engaging the audience that have changed.
Here are some of the highlights from my presentation:
Audience Relations (Huge! opportunity through social networks.)
- Use Twitter to find journalists and bloggers in your target industry
- Read what they are reading and what they are writing
- Help promote their work to build relationships
- Target ‘your’ influencers, but remember they are not necessarily the people with the highest Klout scores or the most Twitter followers
- To what your industry is saying
- To what your customers are saying
- To the media and bloggers are saying
- To what others are saying about you
- To what others say about your competitors
- To what others say about your industry
Create sharable press releases
- Write tweetable headlines
- Use anchor text with links that lead back to your site, to your product
- Optimize your release for search
- Include multimedia which is proven to make your releases more sharable
- Make sure your release is super sharable with social buttons
- Don’t forget to share your own releases!
Break a press release down for sharing and post accordingly on Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, Flikr, etc.
- Crises now happen in real time – have a plan for action in real time
- Use your social channels to communicate in real time throughout a crisis
- Be aware that little issues can become a full blown crisis on channels like Twitter if not handled appropriately and in a timely manner
And don’t forget the greatest gift of social media: the opportunity to humanize your brand. Use social channels to connect on a human level with your clients and others in your industry. It’s now time for truly ‘public’ relations.
Author Victoria Harres is PR Newswire’s director of audience development and the voice of @PRNewswire.