By Wendy Hernandez
When I take a look at my social media channels, I am amazed at the information I have unknowingly curated. Whether it’s the people that I follow on Twitter, the friends that I interact with most on Facebook, or the Instagram accounts that I can’t get enough of, I have created an ecosystem of like-minded individuals who I trust enough to peg as my go-to’s for information sharing. With more and more people turning to social media, what can public relations (PR) professionals do to adjust their strategy and stand out?
So, what do you want to know?
Journalists, like the rest of us, receive a daily barrage of information that they have to sift through. Some, perhaps suffocating under the constant stream of pitches, have even gone as far as declaring PR dead. But the beauty of the current digital landscape is that it allows PR professionals to develop increasingly sophisticated knowledge of the people they are reaching out to. Access to journalist Twitter accounts and LinkedIn profiles have provided better insight into the people that we are trying to reach.
Content. Content. Content.
Now that we can have a better idea of who we are speaking to, let’s be engaging. From the subject line to the end of a pitch, by capturing reader attention with a story that they will not only remember, but feel compelled to share. The digitization of media has opened new ways of doing this, whereas in the past stories were one-dimensional, links can now be provided to a website or YouTube channel.
Instead of a wordy press release, digital PR pros use engaging formats to tell a story. Video, infographics, tweets, pins and snaps are all combined to paint a picture, one brushstroke at a time.
Make SEO work for you
If all else fails, make them come to you. It might be that the elusive media contact that you have been pitching a story to every week (if that’s what your company has set up as your PR calendar) is now finally covering the topic you presented. The chances that they will remember who sent the pitch are slim, but through their own research they may come across a post from your company website or blog. If you are using appropriate and relevant keywords and the content is concise and clear, it is more likely to get picked up.
Media relations has moved from one-dimensional widely diffused business letters to stories broken down into easily digestible bits. Making sure that your content is crisp and easily found will likely increase the chances of not only earning yourself some coverage, but also a new media contact.