Social Media 101


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A primer for PR people on social media.

Published in: Business, Technology
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Social Media 101

  1. 1. Social Media 101 Jeremy Pepper, Director of Communications
  2. 2. The Rise of Social Media <ul><li>Blogs – both corporate and news </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Networks include WIN, Gawker Media, B5 Media </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Individual blogs having influence </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Podcasts and Vidcasts – the rise of the online VNR and ANR </li></ul><ul><li>Social Networks – from MySpace to Facebook to LinkedIn </li></ul><ul><li>Wikipedia – the knowledge and ignorance of the masses </li></ul><ul><li>Bookmarking – Delicious, Digg, Sk*rt, Magnolia </li></ul><ul><li>Y! and Google Groups – still powerful, still influential, still social </li></ul><ul><li>Message Boards/Newsgroups/Forums – the original social media, with large readership and influence </li></ul><ul><li>Messaging – from AIM to YIM to Twitter to Pownce </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>Simple, to the point, paragraph </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use name </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be upfront and honest and simple about the reason you’re emailing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Let them know why you are contacting </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Same with Message Boards </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Do not SPAM or go into boards </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Look for admin email address </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Let them know why they should care </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Short and to the point </li></ul></ul></ul>How to do Outreach
  4. 4. <ul><li>Social Media is not an end-all, be-all </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Part of the communications mix </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Should be treated like another tactic </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Unlike media, cannot be controlled </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Unlike media, cannot be harnessed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Unlike media, does not honor NDA or embargos </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Unlike media, bad pitches are mocked & exposed </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Transparency </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Hot button issue is full transparency </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Lack of transparency easily backfires </li></ul></ul></ul>From a PR POV
  5. 5. Best Practices <ul><li>The basic rules of social media outreach </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Honesty and transparency </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Be upfront and truthful when working with bloggers, podcasters and other social media outreach </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>It is not about the corporate marketing message </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>It is about sharing information and access </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social media outreach needs to be very on point to specific, appropriate bloggers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Bloggers have sweet spots and points of interest, and they need to be taken into consideration before any outreach is done </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Readers can syndicate content easily via RSS (Real Simple Syndication) feeds </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Rules of Engagement I <ul><li>Become involved in the community </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Read appropriate blogs and comment with insightful comments </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Blogs are written in first person, require a full time commitment, and must not be ghost-written </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The purpose of blogging is to let the personality come through </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The best blogs are ongoing, interesting and have a distinctive point of view </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Beyond blogging are the comments with each post </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Comments are part of the conversation and community </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Need to be responded to in a timely manner </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Rules of Engagement II <ul><li>Forget what you know about PR </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Social Media is about relationships and friendships and being human </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Social Media can be cranky </li></ul><ul><ul><li>If the pitch is bad, expect to be exposed </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Bloggers can be overly cynical and critical </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Avoid “marketing” at all costs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be open, upfront and honest in your pitch </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tailor the angle to focus on blogger’s niche </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be knowledgeable, timely and succinct </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gauge interest, gain permission to send material </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Always include relevant links for more info </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Tread very cautiously </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Be sure what you’re pitching is super-relevant </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Digital cameras for Photo enthusiasts, food and events for foodie bloggers, political books for activist bloggers, etc. </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Rules of Engagement - III <ul><li>Be prepared to be ignored and/or insulted </li></ul><ul><ul><li>No corporate speak, marketing or overt messaging </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>No press releases as cut-and-paste or attachment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provide links to appropriate material </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Short and to the point </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Monitor conversation in real-time </li></ul><ul><li>Forget about the follow-up call / email </li></ul><ul><li>Keep expectations realistic </li></ul><ul><li>It is about engaging the community </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Two-way dialogue, a conversation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Comment only when appropriate – do not comment for comment sake </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Message Boards: Two Types <ul><li>Model A </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Go through the moderators of message boards </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be very informal and friendly </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Offer yourself up as a conduit to the company </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>You are the go-to person to get what they want </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Offer up information / access / samples </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Model B </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Join the message board </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be fully transparent - who you are, what you are doing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Participate and answer questions in a timely manner </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ABA - always be available </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. What’s Next? <ul><li>The growth of Widgets and Virtual Goods </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Tools for bloggers and Websites – also known as blog bling </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Can range from video widgets to weather – almost anything you want </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Desktop or Website widgets – live on the desktop, in Google Deskbar, in Mac OSX, etc </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Virtual Goods are an offshoot - gifts you can give on any site </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The growth and convergence of social networks </li></ul><ul><ul><li>From Bebo to MySpace to Vox to LinkedIn to Facebook to Ning </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Getting to the community, wherever they are </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Take Aways <ul><li>Blogs are not a fall-back if the traditional press does not bite </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The press needs to write </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Bloggers choose to write </li></ul></ul><ul><li>It is about “community” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Moreso than journalism </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>If you are not part of the community, you are an interloper / intruder </li></ul></ul><ul><li>It is not MR – it is CR </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Media relations is not social media, it is traditional media </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social media is community relations – think of how you work in the community </li></ul></ul>