MP&F’s Top 25 PR Questions
October 30, 2012
McNeely Pigott & Fox is celebrating 25 years in business during 2012, and one of the ways we’re celebrating is by answering the 25 questions we are most often asked about our business.
Question 14: How much commitment does a social media strategy require?
By Tara Knott, Intern
With 85 percent of marketers reporting that social media is increasing their companies’ business exposure, a well-defined social media strategy can be critical for your business’ success.
Between emails and meetings and the millions of tasks you have to cross off your to-do list every day, social media may seem like another commitment you just don’t have time for.
Thankfully, once you’ve done your homework, creating an effective social media strategy is easier than you think, and the commitment you put in will be well worth the results. Companies with great social media strategies have better relationships with their audiences and ultimately stronger online reputations, which is increasingly integral to overall business success.
1. Know the platforms and understand which one(s) work for you – If the prospect of managing Facebook/Twitter/Instagram/YouTube/Pinterest/Flickr/Foursquare accounts for multiple clients makes you sweat, don’t worry:
Not every company has to be everywhere all the time.
So if your business caters specifically to men, it might not make sense to be on Pinterest, since its users are mostly female. You should research companies like yours, see which social media platforms they’re using and then use those platforms better.
2. Set realistic goals – What are the goals of your company or client? How frequently can you realistically update social media? Once you have a better understanding of where you want to go, you can figure out how to get there.
3. Create a calendar – Once you’ve decided which platforms to use, you’ll need to create a content calendar. This can be as detailed or as flexible as you’d like, depending on the situation.
For one client’s Pinterest account, we’ve set up a very specific calendar with images, videos and captions for each day. All the text has been routed through our copy editors and is ready to post. While it took a few hours of work to set up on the front end, it takes no more than a minute to update each day.
For other clients, and for MP&F itself, we prefer a looser approach. We brainstorm what to post on our own social media accounts during weekly staff meetings, and the marketing committee spreads out those posts throughout the week. That way, if three of our clients have events on the same day, we know not to flood our followers’ timelines with content and can spread out our posts accordingly.
4. Build your audience – Even the best social media strategy won’t do you much good if nobody’s looking at your content. Start by creating shareable content: Keep it short, interesting and easy to read.
Check all social media outlets at least once a day so you can respond to anybody who is interacting with your page, and don’t be afraid to let them see the human side of your company. Sharing a funny picture of your staff at work or a behind-the-scenes video will help you connect with your audience on a more personal level.
5. Make sure all communications channels work together – Social media should not be just another way to push out your news releases. What works on your company website is different from what works on social media, so adapt your content for each platform
For instance, you might post a news release about an upcoming event on your website, upload an album of photos to Facebook, and pick the most compelling photo to share on Instagram or Twitter. Each platform should tell the same story in a different way.
If you have designed a social media strategy, we would welcome your feedback on what has or hasn’t worked.
Check out this social media marketing infographic from Go-Globe.com.
Filed in Public relations, Social media, Top 25 PR Questions
Tags: Deirdre Breakenridge, facebook, Flickr, Instagram, Jason Kintzler, McNeely Pigott & Fox, MP&F, pinterest, Public relations, Social media, social media content calendar, social media strategy, Top 25 PR Questions, twitter, youtube