Social media is a fact-of-life for the PR/Communications professional today. It is no longer just specially-invited “social media influencers” who live-tweet, even mainstream media journalists are in on it!
With that being the case, why not inject some guidance to steer and manage the backchannels while also providing a means to measure the conversations that are going on around your particular piece of news?
- Have great headlines. Keep them within the range of 120 characters – perfect for a tweetable link. People like to leave a little comment when they retweet so leave about 20-30 characters from the 140 character limit. Also, give people enough information on what the press release is about – include something eye-catching and newsworthy, like facts and stats. If necessary, tailor the voice and approach of the release to the audience, which is more than just journalists.
- Numbers, numbers, numbers. People like numbers and they make ideas real.
- Make sub-stories tweetable. Several sub-topics within your main story can be worth individual tweets of their own. The subpoints, which are typically highlighted as a subheading of their own, should be of a tweetable length, making it possible for people to like something, grab it, and tweet it.
- #Hashtag properly. Make sure keywords and search terms are in the release so it can be found. Keeping SEO in mind and being concise work perfectly for Twitter.
- Make quotes tweetable. Make quotes interesting and substantive! Also, don’t be afraid to include the brand’s or person’s Twitter handle.
- Include multimedia. Everyone agrees that video, audio, and other multimedia add value to a press release and further draws in your audience once they’ve clicked on the link in Twitter.
Remember: Twitter is more about trading information so tweeting a link to a news item is pretty much stock and trade. In fact, many look to Twitter as a news source, so it’s best to ensure that your news item is designed appropriately to leverage that fact.