Using social media within your PR strategy is one of, if not the most, important tools for your business.
Managing your own PR may feel daunting, but social media – if done right – can be a great help in you doing this.
Social media is more than just several scattered posts and tweets once a week, it’s about planning and preparing what to share and how to engage with your target audience. How do you make the most of social media?
One of the most obvious things to do is to post frequently. In doing this you need to be wise in how often you post on specific platforms. A great way to build brand awareness for your audience is by using social media and producing posts that would directly target and appeal to them.
Twitter is a fantastic way to get content quickly out to your audience as well as the mass audience that uses the platform. It’s also worthwhile to tweet often with a popular or trending hashtag to get even further audience reach.
Platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn tend to be more corporate, so you need to be wary and limit the daily posts you send to avoid ‘spamming’ your audience’s newsfeed.
There are tools you can use to make this easier and less time consuming. Recurpost, for instance, allows you to recycle and repeat posts on different social media platforms using its convenient calendar feature.
“Facebook and LinkedIn tend to be more corporate, so limit the daily posts to avoid ‘spamming’ your audience’s newsfeed”
Another good tool to use is Hootsuite which gives you the option to schedule posts and manage multiple platforms easily at once. By frequently posting on social media you not only will be able to establish a strong brand image, but you will also be able to showcase your knowledge of the industry sector you reside in.
Research is crucial for every business’ PR. As well as keeping an eye out on the wants, needs and overall engagement of your target audience, you also need to be active and keep an eye out for coverage opportunities.
Make sure you research publications to find out which journalists are covering your industry sector. By following journalists and influencers, you get a better understanding on how to approach them.
Journalists covering specific industry sectors tend to have good knowledge on the current affairs and trending topics, which is another thing you need to be knowledgeable about.
Twitter has a function that allows you to create public and private ‘Twitter lists’ which is ideal in keeping an eye on journalists’ content. Make sure that as a business owner you know what is happening in your own industry sector and how this affects you; whether a positive way, a negative way or as simply a piece of news you can use to your own advantage.
Another good tip is to use #journorequest on Twitter to see coverage opportunities from journalists. Make sure to research what journalists and your target audience are posting on social media – a lot of this can be used to your benefit.
Not only do you need to be active on social media, you also need to engage with the users of that platform.
Social media gives you a great opportunity to engage with your target audience and with journalists in a less formal, conversational manner. By engaging with social media users, you have the opportunity to win the attention of your audience and convey your message directly to their screens, which can then lead to a higher conversion rate.
Customer satisfaction and brand loyalty generally tend to overlap, and so audience engagement solidifies the bond between the business and the consumer.
As well as your target audience, by engaging with journalists you are able to further create brand awareness that they may wish to feature in the future. In so doing this, you can create journalist, blogger and influencer contacts, which can help you greatly in getting featured improving your business PR.
Posting frequently, researching and engaging are key for making the most of your social media. As mentioned, it doesn’t necessarily have to be difficult or time consuming – there are plenty of tools you can use to do this.
Just remember that PR is extremely important for any business and by taking time to implement the use of social media in your strategic plan, you can obtain business growth with much more ease.
Simran Ghata-Aura is media relations assistant at JournoLink.