Tricks of the PR Trade for Social Media

Eons ago, public relations was largely focused on building relationships with journalists and the media. Today that focus continues, but it has become only a part of what PR agencies do to help their clients build their brands.  A large focus of PR today is to strengthen brands by building influencer status on social media.  Here are tried and true tricks of the PR trade, and tips for how to use them on social platforms.

Use a unique voice. That unique voice works best when it intertwines with the brand and its fans and followers. For example, Jon Stewart has built his career on his somewhat snarky attitude. If his social media accounts had a stuffy intellectual attitude without any humor, he’d lose followers left and right. His followers love him and sometimes engage in jokes with him because of who he is. Similarly, what would a Kardashian account be without fashion and skin? A few other kinds of posts here and there are fine with her followers, but if all of a sudden Kim K stopped posting beauty tips and sultry pics, her followers would begin to scratch their heads and look elsewhere for that kind of content. So, deciding on the unique voice of the brand and its visible leaders is vital to building a “celebrity status” brand on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, SnapChat, and any other emerging social media platforms. Your voice and your story are what set you apart from others, bring fans to you, and allow you to be interesting and relevant. No one can do “you” as well as you.

Know what works best. Once you’ve determined your brand’s voice, you need to understand what works best on different platforms. You don’t need to be a daily presence on every platform, but on certain platforms you might want to post multiple times on most days.  A PR specialist can help you decide this.  PR professionals also know the best types of posts for each platform and can help you decide which will fit best with your brand.  Remember that you don’t need to be all things to all people to win the race.  A prime example: our President.  Trump knows which platform serves him best.  He loves Tweeting – it’s quick and easy, and many think his approach to reaching the public through Twitter is a big part of his winning the election.

Engage with followers. Doing PR through social media takes some time. It’s not just about creating the perfect post for a certain platform and your brand. You need to take it at least another step forward and engage with people. Sometimes that is as simple as retweeting; responding with a thank you; or asking a question. Any fan is going to be over-the-moon excited if one of their favorite influencers or brands gives them a shout out.  A follower would be excited to see herself tagged by you and would tell all her friends that you thought she was important enough for a response.  Engagement will help you amplify your voice.

Make appealing content. It’s not always about words; in fact, Twitter is very limited on how many words you can use in a post.  Instagram requires almost no words at all.  For many posts, you will want a high-definition, high-quality picture that tells a story worth at least a thousand words.

Ronn Torossian is the founder and CEO of 5WPR and one of the most well-respected Public Relations professionals in the United States.

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Ronn Torossian is the founder and CEO of 5W Public Relations, one of the largest independently-owned PR firms in the United States. With over 20 years of experience crafting and executing powerful narratives, Torossian is one of America's most prolific and well-respected Public Relations professionals. Since founding 5WPR in 2003, he has led the company's growth, overseeing more than 175 professionals in the company's headquarters in midtown Manhattan. With clients spanning corporate, technology, consumer and crisis, in addition to digital marketing and public affairs capabilities, 5WPR is regularly recognized as an industry leader and has been named "PR Agency of the Year" by the American Business Awards on multiple occasions. Throughout his career, Torossian has worked with some of the world's most visible companies, brands and organizations. His strategic, resourceful approach has been recognized with numerous awards including being named the Stevie American Business Awards 2020 Entrepreneur of the Year, the American Business Awards PR Executive of the Year, twice over, an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year semi-finalist, Metropolitan Magazine's Most Influential New Yorker, and a 2020 Top Crisis Communications Professional by Business Insider. Torossian is known as one of the country's foremost experts on crisis communications, and is called on to counsel blue chip companies, top business executives and entrepreneurs both in the United States and worldwide. Torossian has lectured on crisis PR at Harvard Business School, appears regularly on CNN & CNBC, was named to PR Week's "40 under Forty" list, is a contributing columnist for Forbes and the New York Observer, and his book, "For Immediate Release: Shape Minds, Build Brands, and Deliver Results With Game-Changing Public Relations" is an industry best-seller. A NYC native, Torossian lives in Manhattan with his children. He is a member of Young Presidents Organization (YPO), and active in numerous charities.