An effective online public relations strategy is one that is constantly evolving. Once considered peripheral tools, both social media and online search have proven to be essential for many on the forefront of today’s digital media efforts.
Faves on the 2013 Social PR Menu:
- Engage the Media With Credible Content
- Effective Social Media News Must Be Visual
- Social Media Should Be A Two Way Street
- Brands Are Now Publishers, Treat Each Social Network Like It Is It’s Own Publication
- Journalists Demand Online Newsrooms For Companies Big and Small
Lisa Buyer, presented the case of how to effectively ‘shake and stir’ social and search into any PR campaign at the first SFIMA (South Florida Interactive Marketing Association) panel of 2013. Using Roy Oppenheim, a foreclosure defense attorney as a case study example illustrating Lisa’s Social PR methodology to attract both local and national media coverage. The PR power panel also included social media examples that garnered front page exposure shared by Toby Srebnik, the social media director for O’Connell and Goldberg.
“If you’re going to create content you’ve got to engage with that content,” Oppenheim told the crowd at the IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame in Dania Beach.
For Oppenheim the nucleus of his online PR strategy is his blog, which he started in 2009. By creating SEO-friendly and newsworthy content on the blog a few times a week, his name would pop up more prominently in online search and social results.
Social #PR Tip:Engage the Media With Credible Content
That’s crucial because according to Buyer, all journalists are using search engines to find credible sources. And Oppenheim has found that to be the case. A variety of journalists have discovered Roy through their online searches, and because of Roy’s engaging content, Oppenheim has been cited in a number of high-profile articles in places like the Wall Street Journal, USA Today and the Huffington Post.
Editors at Yahoo! Homes, after reading Roy’s South Florida Law Blog, tapped him to contribute their site, leading to even more exposure for the attorney.
“We try on the blog to stay about 48 hours ahead of the news cycle,” Oppenheim explained, “If SEO brings you up quickly, they (the media) will utilize you as a source. If you put out chum that is optimized, the media catches the wave you start.”
Roy has found online search to be a remarkable tool for connecting with potential clients as well. He posts a number a informative videos on YouTube than engage
customers eager for information.
“People believe in their heart that they’ve found you,” he explained, “That is a remarkably powerful relationship.”
Social PR Tip:Effective Social Media News Must Be Visual
One strategy that Buyer emphasized when she started working with Oppenheim was to use engaging visual images in each and every blog.
Such images make the content socially relevant, even when the topics could be considered boring by those outside the legal field.
“Without the visual people wouldn’t read it,” Oppenheim said. Over half of journalists believe visuals are important, according to Buyer, while only 4% of PR professionals believe photos or video are important to journalists.
So using an eye-catching photo can put you at the top of the heap. But how do you pick what images to put online?
Pinterest in many ways is a great litmus test for images, according to Buyer. She states that if you wouldn’t pin the image, don’t use it on a blog or on a web site.
Social #PR Tip: Brands Are Now Publishers, Treat Each Social Network Like It Is It’s Own Publication
What engages people on Twitter isn’t necessarily as what engages people on Facebook, says Buyer.
So tweak your content to fit each social network as well as your audience on each one, she explains.
By doing so your content will find continued life online and will reach even more people. That content should not be overtly promotional, but instead should help report and comment on news that is vital to your online community.
“If it’s perceived as self-serving than you’ve lost the media,” Oppenheim states, “It has to be perceived as valuable or it won’t produce the results.”
Social #PR Tip: Journalists Demand Online Newsrooms For Companies Big and Small
Customers and journalists alike expect to see a well developed online newsroom, says Buyer. And Google loves content from online newsrooms. An effective newsroom should serve as a central hub for all of your content, from blogs to press releases to social content.
Social #PR Tip: Social Media Should Be A Two Way Street
For Srebnik, who has mounted effective campaigns for brands like Anthony’s Coal Fire Pizza and Dunkin Donuts, real two-way communication is the key to any effective social campaign.
For a campaign promoting the fashion Aventura Mall, he invited influential bloggers to a contest where select customers were allowed to show off their fashion sense on the mall’s social media channels.
By sharing before and after photos of the contestants, Srebnik provided a truly social experience for mall customers, and the campaign generated 301 likes, 24 shares and 15 comments, all at minimal cost.
Of course numbers like that are impressive, but Srebnik finds the benefit of social media isn’t always measurable. “Brands can’t always measure a ROI on social media, but my clients can’t live without it.”
Want to learn more? Join Lisa Buyer at her next PR webinar Fueling the Content Marketing Engine through PR Presented by Online Marketing Institute and PR Newswire.
Check out the full presentation here