How to use Social Media to maximize the effectiveness of your press releases
Social media and press releases differ in the content form, but at its foundation, serve the same purpose of disseminating relevant information about your company. Social media platforms and press releases can be intertwined in a way that helps elevate both forms of content. Utilizing your social media platforms can be a great way to maximize the effectiveness of your press release, disseminating the news in an efficient way and grabbing the attention of journalist and bloggers looking for story ideas on social media platforms.
Of course, each platform has its own best practices and quirks when it comes to posting, but what’s important to remember for any social platform is to make it relevant and interesting to the audience you’re speaking to, which may differ from platform to platform. Here is a breakdown of a few popular social media platforms and how you should approach posting releases on each to maximize the effectiveness of your distribution.
You can easily post a link to the press release directly to your Facebook Page, but for even better exposure, consider leveraging the more social features of the Facebook platform. A Facebook post gives you more room to share content than most other platforms, making it a great place to elicit engagement about your announcement and increase the number of readers. Leverage the tools that Facebook already offers to make the announcement more interactive and interesting for the social media user. Facebook polls, for example, are easy to set up and get people interacting with your page, and ultimately, your press release. Let’s say you’re a cosmetic company announcing a new makeup application product. Along with a short, Facebook-post-length introduction of your release, you could include a poll about whether this new product would alter the way people apply makeup for special occasions. An easy poll directly tied to your announcement can be a simple but effective way to garner reads, engagement, and shares of your press release link.
Given its 140 character limit, sharing a press release on Twitter can be a challenge. The key to getting eyes on your press release from Twitter is to create attention-grabbing tweets that will make your followers want to stop and click on your link to the full release. Really assess the goals and thought-process of your target followers on Twitter, and think through what about your announcement would make it relevant for their needs. Then, you can utilize that headline as a hook to encourage clicks to the full release. You should absolutely, although sparingly, use relevant hashtags that journalists can search for – experts recommend one hashtag per post, two maximum – to keep your post clean and professional. These hashtags should be commonly used tags within your industry that will allow your tweet to come up when bloggers, journalists, and consumers do a quick search of relevant terms.
While not a traditional forum for press releases, depending on the industry and type of product you’re working with, Instagram and Pinterest could serve a useful purpose in maximizing the effectiveness of your press release. Both of these platforms are not text centric, so you definitely won’t be typing out long content form on these platforms. However, if you have an intriguing product announcement that can be translated into eye-catching images or an interesting infographic, you can leverage those images to make the release content relevant for these platforms. If we use the makeup applicator announcement as an example again, the company could pin a Pinterest image of a blogger’s holiday makeup look utilizing this new application system, and link to the press release as a way for pinners to find out more information on how to achieve that look. This gets relevant content and your press release link on a very shareable platform.
You should definitely post your press release to your blog, if you have one. And, it’s a good idea to reference your blog in your press release. If a journalist reads your press release and wants to keep you/your business on their radar, they may start following your blog (and/or your Twitter feed). To make your press release even more engaging to your audience, consider repurposing the press release content to fit within your blog’s style and voice. Also think about turning your press release data into an infographic or changing the more formal information into bullet form to make it a more digestible piece of content for your readers. You can also take advantage of RSS feeds provided by certain social media platforms like LinkedIn to pull in your blog articles automatically, ensuring that any of the press release content you repurpose for the blog will show up in your social media platforms.
All of these platforms are intertwined and can be leveraged together to create a cohesive campaign with the press release at the center of it all.