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Integrating Social Media with PR

March 15, 2017

So you want to spread the word about your brand. You’ve developed a public relations strategy and think you should capitalize on social media, too – but you can’t put your finger on how it integrates with your PR plan.

Understanding how to utilize social media and PR together can be tricky. In this post, we’ll discuss how social helps you accomplish your PR goals, and we’ll lay out things to keep in mind when creating your social media strategy.

Before thinking about how to complement your PR with social media, be sure to abide by best practices for social media. The not-so-secret key to good social media is high-quality content. Consider these points when mapping out content for social.

  • Visuals: Show, don’t tell. Engaging visuals help users to interact with your content. Those in the business know how important visuals are, as 74% of social media marketers use visual assets in their social media marketing, according to HubSpot.
  • Brand voice: Develop a clear and consistent brand voice so people identify with your brand’s purpose and personality.
  • Add value: The social media space is noisy. To be heard, offer something valuable. Educate or entertain your audience. Create something original that people will remember.
  • Experiment: Play around a little. Feed your audience various types of content, at different times of day, to see what they prefer. And don’t be afraid to try something new. If you’re first in the door to emerging social media tools (Facebook Live, for example), you might be rewarded for being an early adopter.

Armed with these basics, you’re ready to start creating awesome content.

So, how does social integrate with PR? In a recent post, we discussed media relations basics, which help you get the news media to tell your brand’s story. Social media also promotes your story, except now you’re the one who’s telling it.

Think of social media as your brand’s personal newsroom. Remember the basics for good content creation while using various platforms to promote events, announcements and achievements. For example, if you’re hosting an event featuring a notable speaker, try creating a social media graphic with one of that speaker’s most interesting quotes. It’s an easy way to spread the word while creating distinct, visual content.

Similarly, try creating longer-form content like blogs, videos and infographics to push out via social. These pieces paint a more vivid picture of your offerings, and they help people form deeper connections with your brand. For that speaker you’re hosting, you could do a brief Q&A with the speaker on his/her background, presented as a podcast or blog post. That content is easily packaged and promoted through social media.

Aside from content marketing, social media is also a great tool for connecting with reporters. Following a reporter on social is useful for learning about what he/she likes to write about. Also, sharing a reporter’s relevant stories via social develops a positive relationship that may pay dividends in the long run.

Now you’re ready to start using social media to enhance your PR efforts. To make it easier on you, we’ve included several resources below that will to help you make the most of your social media marketing.

RESOURCES (Twitter list, PR activations for events, etc.)

John Jiloty

is Senior Vice President of  Growth Channels and Content for The Martin Group. Learn more about our Social Media and Content Marketing expertise.

Follow John on Twitter @jjiloty

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