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Recommendations needed: Maximizing Twitter for media relations

Posted by Tami Dennis @tamidennis, May 2, 2016

Can anyone recommend an online course on maximizing Twitter use — specifically for media relations? We want to more effectively connect with, follow and pitch journalists and media outlets. Sure, we could keep spamming them with email, but we’re thinking there’s a better way.

Our just-announced May webinar may be a great place to start, @tamidennis. Serena Ehrlich, Business Wire’s Director of Social and Evolving Media, will cover the modern news consumer, the role of search and social in public relations, the changes occurring in the media landscape, the role of imagery in driving actions, tactical tips for writing a more useful news release and finally, utilizing news release data to support business goals.

It’s free to MCSMN premium members. You can read more about it – and register – at this link: https://socialmedia.mayoclinic.org/discussion/converting-coverage-into-actions-search-social-and-the-news-release/

Liked by Kathy Winter

REPLY

Tami, there are some very helpful articles that I’d recommend instead of a course. This one from Forbes (2014) is good: “Twitter for PR: Fact and Fantasy” http://www.forbes.com/sites/robertwynne/2014/09/22/twitter-for-public-relations-fact-and-fantasy/3/#2aa0954e2bd4. They also wrote a follow up that’s worth your time.

Here’s what I’ve done to connect with journalists on Twitter:
1 – I have a short list of the top reporters I want to connect with. (Not all of my “targets” are on Twitter. I connect with some on LinkedIn.) Note that for a large outlet (ex: NY Times) I choose multiple reporters in different departments so that I can pitch a different angle if the first reporter turns me down.
2 – I do a search on their name, for example: typically brings up a Twitter handle.
3 – I start following and retweeting things they’re saying. I don’t RT everything–I don’t want to look like I’m stalking. However, I make it clear that I’m interested in what they’re writing about. (I’ve also commented on an online article so they see my name in a few places.)
4 – I offer some information or a connection on a story that they’re working on or have shown interest in.
5 – And then I pitch my client and/or story.

Yes, it takes time. It doesn’t happen overnight–particularly for the national outlets. Once you have their attention, it’s going to take even more time to get the story done. (I once had a Wall St. Journal story take a year–no kidding, 365 days–before it was finally published.) Be patient. Invest your time and the effort to follow up…and follow up….and follow up.

If you want to talk further about a particular outlet or pitch, I’m happy to connect offline. My email is: kris@ksaustin.com.

REPLY
@ksaustin

Tami, there are some very helpful articles that I’d recommend instead of a course. This one from Forbes (2014) is good: “Twitter for PR: Fact and Fantasy” http://www.forbes.com/sites/robertwynne/2014/09/22/twitter-for-public-relations-fact-and-fantasy/3/#2aa0954e2bd4. They also wrote a follow up that’s worth your time.

Here’s what I’ve done to connect with journalists on Twitter:
1 – I have a short list of the top reporters I want to connect with. (Not all of my “targets” are on Twitter. I connect with some on LinkedIn.) Note that for a large outlet (ex: NY Times) I choose multiple reporters in different departments so that I can pitch a different angle if the first reporter turns me down.
2 – I do a search on their name, for example: typically brings up a Twitter handle.
3 – I start following and retweeting things they’re saying. I don’t RT everything–I don’t want to look like I’m stalking. However, I make it clear that I’m interested in what they’re writing about. (I’ve also commented on an online article so they see my name in a few places.)
4 – I offer some information or a connection on a story that they’re working on or have shown interest in.
5 – And then I pitch my client and/or story.

Yes, it takes time. It doesn’t happen overnight–particularly for the national outlets. Once you have their attention, it’s going to take even more time to get the story done. (I once had a Wall St. Journal story take a year–no kidding, 365 days–before it was finally published.) Be patient. Invest your time and the effort to follow up…and follow up….and follow up.

If you want to talk further about a particular outlet or pitch, I’m happy to connect offline. My email is: kris@ksaustin.com.

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Great! Thank you so much, Kris!

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