There can be no denying it, social media has changed the world. Some 1.5 billion people are on Facebook alone. That is a staggering number and its one we should consider when building our media relations plans.
At PR In a Box, we specialise in helping small businesses maximise their presence in the media. We do this by offering UK press release distribution, a powerful PR toolkit, and various press release distribution services & support. However, social media is an entirely new ballgame for most of us.
While on a surface level most of us understand that social media is consumed by nearly our entire audience, we may not fully appreciate how to use our marketing strategies to captalise on it.
In today’s post, we’re going to examine how social media has changed the world of PR, and you’ll walk away knowing:
• How best to use social media in your PR strategy
• How to motivate people on social media to take an interest in your business
• How to support your audience via social media.
How Social Media Has Changed PR
One of the biggest changes that social media has made to the world of PR is how we consume information.
Instead of simply watching television, we watch television and scroll our social media profiles, browse the web on our iPads, or respond to emails on our laptop.
It’s important to note, however, that we still use traditional media—but we consume it differently. We do more with what we have. And whilst that isn’t always ideal for our concentration, it's important for companies to keep this in mind when launching media campaigns.
Integrating traditional PR with social media isn’t just good advice, it’s what some 62 percent of PR departments are doing for their companies.
And if your company isn’t keeping up to date with the growing number of social media technologies, you can be confident you’ll be left behind.
But these aren’t the only ways social has altered the landscape of PR…
Your Audience’s Attention Span
It’s worth mentioning that the average adult’s attention span is now just 8 seconds, a full second behind that of the goldfish—much of which can be attributed to social media.
If your media campaign isn’t targeted for an audience with a limited attention span, then your message is probably falling on deaf ears.
How Information is Created & Shared
With social media at the helm, content co-creation has taken over. Companies have little control over how audiences share messages about their business.
From Yelp to Google Reviews to Blog Posts and tweets, you simply have little to no control over what people say and how they share it.
However, PR professionals simply need to inject their opinion and point of view into the mix to steer the direction of the conversation in your favour.
By using social tools to track and make themselves available to their audience, companies create an open dialogue where they can benefit.
Customer Care Response
Gone are the days when customers had to wait on the phone for countless minutes hoping to connect with a customer service rep.
Now, customers take their complaints to social media. And if your PR team doesn’t respond appropriately, you could find yourself on the losing end of a viral post.
But if you act quickly, respond to questions and comments you receive on social channels, then it can serve as an excellent PR building tool.
Better Customer Targeting
No one likes to spend time writing a press release only to have it fall flat.
With social media, PR campaigns can go much further and hit the right people. The advanced targeting of sites like Facebook and Twitter allow you to target your audience right down to their very city.
Before social media, this kind of targeting simply wasn’t possible. And while it can seem overwhelming, it provides fertile ground to spread the message, whether that’s through a press release or other outlet.
Tying it Together
So, to recap, the most distinguishable ways social media has changed PR include:
• The attention of your audience
• How information is created and shared (companies have little control over how audiences share messages about their business)
• Customer care response
• Better targeting of your audience
At PR In a Box, we understand the evolution of social media and the role it plays in the PR world. We implement it in our PR toolkit as well as in our press release distribution services. If you need help with your UK press release distribution, we’re here to help.