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8 Easy Ways to Use Social Media to Optimize Your PR Campaign

Social Media and PR

Social media and publicity go hand in hand. In fact, they need each other in order to function most effectively. Intelligent and responsive community management for a brand will often help or exacerbate a PR crisis as it unfolds in real time. When a news story breaks now, it typically happens on Twitter.  Broadcast news channels often refer to tweets as part of their newscast, media live-tweet events as they occur and TV stations put shows on the air with content exclusively based on social media. In short, it’s all closely connected.

Oprah was recently passing through a number of cities on a speaking tour and one brand, David’s Tea, was lucky enough to get endorsed by her on instagram. This example of celebrity seeding led to exorbitant amounts of press, generating a huge spike in sales, all from supplying one of the world’s most powerful celebrities with a gift bag at an opportune moment.

Here are eight easy ways to ensure a traditional PR campaign is leveraging social media to help generate results online:

Monitor the conversion relating to your brand online

1.)    Make time for a daily Twitter search of your client’s name and key words associated with their brand. This will help you find out if any influencers are already engaging with your brand. For example, if it happens to be a soft drink, search for the brand name, along with “soda” and “pop”. I found out that radio host Dean Blundell was a Dr. Pepper fan from watching Twitter, and was able to coordinate a special delivery directly to the radio station while they were on air.

Sharing is caring

2.)    Once a print story has dropped, send it to the spokesperson with a friendly reminder for them to tweet or post the link, thanking the journalist and outlet for speaking with them.

Include social media information in interview confirmations and schedules

3.)    When confirming an interview with a spokesperson or journalist, include the Twitter handle of the person they will be speaking to, provided they are on Twitter. This will help remind both parties that they could connect pre or post interview to further establish the relationship.

Document interviews with fun photographs to share online

4.)    If you have facilitated a broadcast interview, take a photo of the spokesperson and the host of the show. Tweet it or post it to instagram, driving to the interview airdate to help remind viewers to tune-in. Send it along to the interviewee and kindly ask them to tweet it too.

Create key messaging specifically for use on social media

5.)    If you are creating a key message document for an interview or event, be sure to include a section for ‘suggested social media messaging’. Script a few potential tweets with all the relevant information, so it can just copied and pasted directly into Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn. This helps spread the word, while making life easy for everyone involved.

Establish yourself as a resource for journalists

6.)    Follow journalists who cover your beat on Twitter and keep an eye on the conversation daily. Media are often looking for sources and Twitter is the first place they turn to tweet out the request to their audience. If you are paying attention you just might seize a great opportunity. This profile on a friend of mine from The Grid was a direct result of a Twitter introduction.

Keep an eye on potential opportunities

7.)    Subscribe to Help-a-Reporter-Out (HARO) and follow them on Twitter. This is an incredibly easy way browse through journalist inquires in real-time and see if any opportunities are a fit for yourself or a client.

Use video to tease your announcement

8.)    Before sending the standard press release or media alert, consider using Vine or Instagram video to tease your announcement in a creative way.

Photo Credit: Social Media and PR/shutterstock

Join The Conversation

  • bbmcKinney's picture
    Jun 30 Posted 2 years ago bbmcKinney

    This is such an interesting article, relevant information basically can be absorbed by people on community through social media e.g twitter, and easily done for everyone involved. But i agree, that hiring PR professionals can get issues of their company attained in a short time.

  • Apr 5 Posted 3 years ago MariCuellar03

    I feel like most companies today might not be aware of some common knowledge pr and social media tactics such as the ones you just listed. Knowing these could potentially prevent disaster for companys and organizations if they just had basic knowledge of it. Most companies usually hire PR professionals to take care of these issues or aspects of their company and don't botther to look it over themselves. 

    Thank you for sharing this insightful post, and it'd be awesome if someone who wasn't in a PR related field came across this post. It'd help them a lot!

  • Apr 5 Posted 3 years ago MariCuellar03

    I think it's extremely important, especially in todays day and age for companies to monitor their social media content, but not only that to also monitor conversation that pertains to their company. In your post you said the you should monitor the conversation relating to your brand online and while that is true, most people who are in the PR field don't know that. While company's hire PR professionals to take care of most of these seemingly little things, I feel like they sometimes forget they are in the public eye which then can lead to potential disaster. 

    Thank you for the post, I thought it was very helpful, especially to those who aren't in the field.

  • Dec 6 Posted 3 years ago George Santos

    Hi! I am a communications student and we are discussing public relations this semester. I stumbled upon your article while looking for ways to utilize social media in public relations,and I find this very helpful. Is it okay if I refer to this for our report?

    Thank you.

  • ajayprasad's picture
    Nov 12 Posted 3 years ago emarketing .

    Most of the points are good for public relation campaign in social media.But "Document interviews with fun photographs to share online" is more effictive for PR Compaing because most of the people like visual clips. Thank you so much for all valuable tips.


  • KirkHazlett's picture
    Nov 11 Posted 3 years ago KirkHazlett

    Some good, sensible advice/reminders in this post. Thanks for sharing!

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