Of course, your business is on social media. You post regular content on Facebook and pics on the ’Gram. Your LinkedIn presence is healthy and you tweet daily.
The internet is full of a plethora of other ideas from Facebook Live tips to infographics that catch the eye to creating a snazzy Geofilter.
We offer some not-so-obvious ideas that could not only boost your following but your brand.
We’re going to talk about media for a moment in more than one context. If your press releases seem to be going down a rabbit hole, review our recent tips but also ask yourself this. Do you follow reporters and their respective media outlets on the various social platforms? Do you ever comment on posts related to your product or business? Start doing both. In addition to laying the groundwork for a relationship, this also gives you an opportunity to see what kind of stories appeal to your local media.
Remember, social media is meant to be social — back-and-forth dialogue, conversation, chatter. Many businesses consider it a one-way channel to spit out their information But there are no silos in social media. It’s about interacting, consistently.
If you’re looking to engage media and you only go to media members when you have an idea that benefits your brand, you might not be able to capture the kind of attention you need. Your deadline isn’t their deadline. Start building a relationship with media members, and make your social media part of that. “Like” stories. Comment on them with something specific. Don’t force your brand into the conversation, but don’t be afraid to add a thoughtful comment rather than just a thumbs up. Share relevant links. When the time is right for your news, you have a better chance of getting a bite if you’ve had some previous engagement that wasn’t self-serving.
Of course, if your idea is picked up, giving a media member a shoutout on your various social platforms is a no-brainer along with sharing the content on all of your feeds. Don’t just retweet. Retweet with comment.
You should be connecting with every relevant media member on social — that list should include traditional media such as newspaper and TV reporters along with online-only media. Make sure you are aware of all the media in your area; the evolving landscape changes with new outlets sprouting up all the time. Don’t overlook blogs or other influencers if they’re professional.
When sharing content about your brand, consider tagging relevant media, but don’t overdo it. Every announcement isn’t newsworthy. Nobody enjoys a good story more than a reporter, but too often businesses share fluff rather than stories that have impact on social. You need a storyline; media are not interested in your PR.
If you’re well connected locally, expand your reach to the region and nationally. Spend some time doing searches on Twitter and Google to see which publications and specific reporters write about subjects related to your business. Follow them, and on Twitter, feel free to tag with news content from your business that might be able to contribute to a larger story they’re working on.
Often, reporters from national publications put out calls on Twitter seeking sources for stories in the works. For example, Paul Davidson, an economics reporter at USA Today who covers jobs, consumer spending and manufacturing, asked earlier this month for anyone who has found a new job after being furloughed to reach out to him. Don’t overlook broadcast reporters, including radio. Carrie Jung, an education reporter who works for NPR affiliate WBUR, recently sent out a tweet in search of parents and students in the midst of the college application process.
While it will take some time, make a wish list of publications you’d like to be included in. Follow reporters in those publications and look for those type of requests. If your business has a unique local take or response to a trending national issue, don’t hesitate to reach out. Is it a longshot? In some cases, yes, though your chances improve if you’re among the early responses and meet the criteria the reporter is seeking. At the very least it helps keep you plugged in to the storylines specific to your industry.
If you’re already doing all these things, congratulations!