It might as well be common sense. Public relations and social media go hand-in-hand. They are forms of communication that, when working in tandem, have the ability to present a solid brand and clear message for any business. 2009 taught us that.
Last year we embraced social media with open arms, as so many PR professionals have done. We recognized its power in monitoring a brand and reaching out to clientele in real-time. As Jeremy Pepper noted in his blog Pop PR: “The fact is that social media should not be a separate discipline anymore, nor should it ever have been… Isn’t it just part of the whole P in public relations?”
We think so.
Many of our own clients, a mix of lifestyle, restaurant and financial industry experts, have embraced social media as part of a full-scale public relations and marketing plan. Some chose to devote their entire PR budgets to social media marketing. They saw it as way of dipping their proverbial toes in the water for the first time. And they’ve seen results.
Those results ranged from online twitter discussions about their areas of expertise to garnering interest from writers and bloggers to earning new customers. All the while, we were able to help keep their PR messages consistent, address any concerns that arose immediately and above all, give our clients a new window and perspective into their businesses.
Social Media Strategist Sally Falkow considers social media a worthy PR resolution for 2010, and we agree. “Social Media is no longer a fad, or something to try out,” she wrote. “It will become an integral part of PR programs in 2010. And PR people have to master social media and use it strategically to be effective… It seems we need to up our game.
But businesses delving in for the first time should take note – this isn’t a task to hand off to your computer-savvy nephew. Experience using Facebook and Twitter does not suffice for a solid social media strategy.
As Pepper said: “Social media shouldn’t be a special job that is relegated to 25-year-olds as they do not have the gravitas or years of experience to understand the deeper issues.” Years of experience strategic public relations counseling is a boon to any business – online or otherwise.
What do you aim to do differently with social media this year?