PR Newswire Unlocks Five Social Media To-Do’s for PR in 2012

Give your story, and audience, a fine tuning with the new rules of social media PR

In PR Newswire’s 2012 edition of Unlocking Social Media for PR, Jason Keller, Senior Vice President of Products for PR Newswire reminds your marketing and PR team that “you simply cannot escape the influence of social media in modern public relations – and, in fact, it’s leading to entirely new kinds of workflows for the PR industry.” Unfortunately, in publishing, an industry that’s admittedly been a little bit slower to adapt than others, we’re still seeing the same old press releases being sent to the same news outlets.

What’s clear from the thoughts of author Sarah Skerik is that PR is no longer about press releases and behind-the-scenes brand management. Any one-dimensional PR professional like this is likely to retire a wee bit early.

Skerik explains that every PR professional should join all the major social networks and maybe even more importantly, start their own blog to practice writing and tone. The point of doing all of these things has nothing to do with “building a presence”, either, it’s all about practice, learning the moves of the players and determining the goals of users on each individual network.

That new PR workflow Keller was talking about

Not sure which social networks you should join? Skerik explains, “it all becomes much more manageable when you think about where your audience is…and act accordingly. So, if you’re focusing on teens, you can cross LinkedIn and Twitter off your list and double down on Facebook and Youtube. Do you have a B2B focus? LinkedIn and Twitter will be key, but, unfortunately, you can’t eliminate Facebook or Youtube (which you should think of as a very search-engine-friendly video repository.)”

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A few other pearls of wisdom of the white paper:

  1. Go big on content.
  2. An easy task for publishers, Skerik notes that “content (whatever form it takes) fuels your social media presence. It’s an authentic way to leverage your organization’s skills.”

  3. Choose the right candidate for the job.
    “Giving people tasks and responsibilities for which they’re well suited is crucial to your program’s ongoing success,” advises Skerik. “That person in customer service that everyone loves might be really good at dishing advice and tips on Facebook. The serial networker in the group may be a great advocate for the brand on LinkedIn or a powerful voice on Twitter.”
  4. Listen to your “Social Echo”.
    According to Amplifying Your Social Echo, “Social Echo is best described as the powerful reverberation of conversations around your brand that occur in the numerous social networks where people gather today.” It basically means that listening on social networks may be your greatest advantage over the competition. It allows you to understand what people are saying about you, your competitors, and other things going on in your industry to that your business can adapt, revolutionize and build a better, more active brand.
  5. Let social media break routines.
    Skerik goes on in one chapter about the way that having instant-access to journalists, reporters, our customers, and even some celebrities has changed the way to get and consume information. As a publisher, you might start to get more customer support inquiries than you ever did over the phone and in many cases it could keep a subscriber from unsubscribing.
  6. Pay attention to real-time PR.
    For immediate release doesn’t cut it anymore. “Making time for real-time PR requires a shift in priorities and resource allocation. It’s probably a good time to take stock of PR workflows and activities, and end those activities that are no longer productive,” says Skerik.

There is a lot other good stuff to take away from this white-paper, like the differences in writing between Facebook (interesting & pithy), Twitter (short & crisp), and LinkedIn (resourceful) so I’d suggest a download since they don’t require an email address and they have a bunch of other great related PR white papers in their collection too.



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