If your company is launching a new product, participating in an event or conference or getting involved with a local charity, one of the best ways to share the news is through the use of PR. This is basically gaining editorial space, although a form of advertising this is a great way of gaining endorsement from someone else, this helps to give you credibility and is more powerful than you talking about yourself.
The way that PR is handled now is very different, Social Media has meant that you no longer just need to focus on the more traditional forms of media such as newspapers and magazines. Being aware of how your brand is perceived involves listening to what people are saying about you in a whole host of different areas. PR today is about targeting those that are vocal online as well as offline, so this includes bloggers online websites, consultants in fact anyone who is good at voicing opinions on the Internet.
How to use social media for PR
- Share news on your company website through your blog or news pages and send notification to your RSS subscribers.
- Syndicate this via the social networks (you should already have profiles in Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc..)
- Bookmark these updates on sites such as Diggit.
- Promote your social media profiles through your official Press Releases
Make sure that you have a consistent message between your online and offline PR activity to ensure that you are giving the same message to both areas, there is more and more crossover these days, with many newspapers having an online equivalent so you need to make sure they are hearing the same information from you. Also use your offline efforts to publicise what you are doing online and vice versa.
Your offline marketing efforts can be given a real boost by integrating it with your social media marketing. We tend to use offline marketing to create brand awareness, advertise to a specific demographic and deliver targeted messages with visual content. Online marketing, however, is all about interacting with consumers, by building relationships and having conversations with them. By combining your online and offline marketing efforts you get the best of both worlds.
Here are some ways to add social media to your offline marketing:
The first thing you need to decide is what your news is, make sure your announcement is relevant to your business and also something that people will find of interest, there’s no point writing a Press Release about business as usual.
Make sure that you include clear call to actions so that readers know what they need to do next, why not include some important points but encourage people to visit your website to find out more. Make sure that it is clear and concise this isn’t the place to write a full blown essay, nor is it the right time to use lots of industry jargon. Keep to the point and write for your audience and not yourself.
Encourage readers to interact with you by including links to your social networking profiles and think about using other media such as images and video to both engage with your audience and link back to your website.
Once you are happy with the finished piece you need to publish it, first off make sure you post it on your own website and then syndicate across your own social networks. Then submit your Press Release to local newspapers and magazines and also via PR distribution websites that can help you increase your potential audience.
Write a blog post about your news and link to your Press Release and again, syndicate this blog post across your social networking sites, this is all about reaching as big an audience as possible to help spread your message as well as helping SEO efforts by creating new content and links to your website.
Follow up on further news as it occurs so that people are kept up to date.
Find out more about how to use press releases and social media in your business