PR News recently revealed the results of the social media survey conducted in partnership with Cision. Results showed that while the motivation to use social media is present, many are only working with social media on a reactive level.
“Engaging with and tracking social media are now standard PR practices. That said, the more than 900 communications professionals who responded to the survey voiced a mixed bag of concern, skepticism and optimism over the value of the blogs and social networks that are currently being implemented within their organizations.”
While many said they monitor and respond to blogs and social network conversations, frustrations and confusion exists about grasping the variety of applications and measuring social media. Unfortunately, I don’t have answers either. But PR News did provide some tips that I’ll expand on:
- Pitching bloggers can be a great way to reach to niche audiences. However, just like you wouldn’t pitch a reporter at the Tribune without looking up the topics he or she covers, you shouldn’t pitch bloggers without monitoring their blogs and reading at least 20 of their posts, including comments. Mass e-mailed pitches are not acceptable for mainstream media, and they’re not acceptable for bloggers either.
- Blogs and social networking sites facilitate dynamic environments. If an executive has his own blog or site, it needs to be continually updated.
- When it comes to measurement, think outside a static report. Article comments can be followed and rated for tonality. Facebook applications can be ranked and linked to product sales. Keep on top of the technical developments involving social media measurement.
The world of social media can be daunting. I still can’t figure out Twitter! And these kinds of things are supposed to come easy for my generation… so I can only imagine how PR pros with many years of experience may be feeling. The good news is that there is plenty of literature available for those who want to learn. I’m hoping to take some of my own advice and start reading it…