When you think about PR and social media, you may find the two to be very different. In fact, that’s one of the reasons PR professionals didn’t really embrace social media in the beginning.
However, an opportunity has presented itself to actually combine efforts and maximize both as a result.
Think about it: public relations is all about relationships and storytelling. What better way to help companies make connections and build a reputation than with social media?
Recently, I had a great conversation with Christoph Trappe on his Business Storytelling Podcast where we dove into this further.
PR and Social Media Can Work Together
Despite their differences, PR and social media can be used together strategically to create a major impact for your brand. Approaching them as a united campaign sets your business up for increased brand awareness, more engagement, and better relationships.
First, social media offers endless opportunities to get out there and make connections.
Beyond members of traditional media like journalists and producers, you can now collaborate with social media influencers, bloggers, podcasters, live streamers, and more.
Whatever community your collaborator has, that is another way to extend the reach of your story and thought leadership.
With that said, always align yourself with those who share your values.
Beyond just brand awareness, PR uses strategic communications to engage with certain groups.
I shared with Christoph and his audience examples of customers, employees, media, and your community. It’s really up to you which group you want to engage with, and PR is the way to make that connection.
That being said, communication with your audience can no longer be one-way. PR may be the bridge to communicating your message, but listening is just as important.
Storytelling and Social Media
Social media allows voices from both directions to be heard. When you take the time to listen, yes it can sometimes feel noisy, but there are also many valuable insights ready to be discovered.
Lastly, while most people may know PR through earned media and publicity, it is so much more than that.
In reality, PR is grounded in the fact that good relationships are at the heart of a successful brand.
Social media gives citizen journalists a platform, which is why we now have so many different avenues to share stories and build those relationships.
Something we have learned from social media, however, is that you must be authentic in your storytelling. You can no longer just put your spokesperson out there and expect strong relations from it. No matter the audience, social media encourages people to be smarter consumers than ever. Therefore, always make your intentions, purpose, and values clear in any message you send.
Ultimately, social media is an extension of your public relations efforts to grow your brand and relationships. Marrying the two strategically not only helps tell your story, but build a community around that story. In doing so, you create meaning around your brand for long-term success.
For more building strategy around PR and social media, watch the full episode on https://authenticstorytelling.net/