Integrating social media into your public relations strategy provides an integrated approach to help you listen, engage and build loyalty. I’ve witnessed many businesses use social media independently as a vehicle to deliver their information, rather than an engagement tool. While this approach may satisfy immediate business objectives, it’s not a long-term communication strategy, often leaving CEO’s disappointed when it doesn’t evoke the desired result.
Your PR strategy should support your business and communications objectives and it’s important to know in advance what you are trying to achieve. Social media, when used effectively, can meet both the strategic and more down-to-earth needs of your business such as product launches, customer support, public outreach, lead generation and/or market research.
After you have identified your business objectives, the part most companies struggle with is… how to translate them into social media to achieve their communication objectives. A simple way to look at this is to draw three columns on a piece of paper. On the left, write each of your business objectives. In the right hand column, write down your communications objective and target audiences for each one you’ve identified the left hand column. That is, who is the message intended for and what is the desired outcome? In the middle column, outline how you will satisfy both using social media. What tools will best meet your combined objectives and how will you use them?
Social media PR is a powerful tool that can be used to monitor what is being said about your brand products and services. Social media PR love is conditional, given freely as long as certain needs are met. It involves engagement, metrics and acting on what you learn from editors & reporters, consumers, competitors and online influencers. Whether you are using social media for soliciting a response, providing information, encouraging an action, increasing awareness, building consensus or changing behaviour… social media PR love requires a concentrated focus on what is truly important, to both your organization and your audience.