December 19th, 2011
by Amy Dunn
I came across a great article last week on Forbes by contributor and public relations professional Robert Wynne: Should You Post Press Releases In Social Media?
To me, its a no brainer. Of course we need to utilize social media to distribute press releases (in my humble opinion). But I was so intrigued by the question, that asked the Web Marketing Therapy team what they thought- here are the responses I got from them:
Nowadays with the world wide web being so accessible, information about almost anything is available at a moment’s notice. With this being the case, I believe that the more people ‘know’ about a company or product, the more they will trust or like the brand or product. Press releases give the public another glimpse into a business that, in the old days, they may not have been privy to. So, yes, I think it’s perfectly acceptable to use social media as another way to leverage a company or product because people want to be ‘in the know’.- Anne Orfila
Press releases should go out in social press release distribution tools like prweb.com but only if they are educational….not overly promotional. We use tools like prweb and pitchengine and love them!- Lorrie Thomas Ross
Distributing Press Releases using Social Media is must! Tools like Pitchengine allow the release to live on the web with branding – company logo, relevant images and videos, news bites, a Twitter feed and links. Pitchengine is great for SEO (highlighting keywords in natural searches). The distribution tool, PRWeb can be found by other high-level online publications and helps gain your story exposure by getting picked up and shared. To continue the visibility a Facebook “Notes” version of the release gives a whole new audience one more way to get your news! To ensure that all of this PR mojo doesn’t get lost in cyberspace – sign up for Google Alerts and use key pieces of the title and content to keep up with where your release can be found on the web.- Darla Bea Smith
The article presents an ongoing conversation marketers are having and there are credible arguements on both sides by some of our industry’s top thinkers. Here is a breakdown of what they had to say. Please note, these are my summaries of their comments and not actual quotes. To get the full story read the article on Forbes.
Stacey Acevero, Social Media Community Manager, Vocus/PRWeb.
Share your news in relevant platforms Facebook/LinkedIn/Twitter and create conversation around your news. It is also good to incorporate engaging features like pictures or video into your release.
Charlene Kingston, Social Media DIY Workshop
Yes, but don’t over do it- send out releases only when you have significant news for your target audience (otherwise, make it a blog post).
Jennie Smythe, Founder, Girlilla Marketing.
Use the news in your release, then personalize it. Link to the release from your website or an outside outlet.
Marcus Fagerlund, Area Director, North America West, Meltwater Buzz
You should judge on a case by case basis. Some releases can be used to successfully engage your community while some releases are not appropriate to share on social media platforms because they contain sensitive info only relevant to your industry.
Neal Rodriguez, Online marketing expert, Forbes.com blogger
Simply posting a press release in social media is not effective; but if you link the press release to interesting and relevant content on your website. “Just think of your objective, which is promoting your own digital asset, not the press release.”
David Meerman Scott Lecturer, Author, The New Rules of Marketing and PR (Third Edition)
Press releases are good for two things: reaching members of the media and improving your search engine ranking by publishing it on your own website and using one of the press release distribution services. Press Releases are too formal for social networks.
So- based on the comments above. When should marketers use Social Media to distribute Press Releases? Robert Wynne sums it up:
Facebook – Rarely, almost never. Make sure the news is BIG.
LinkedIn – Sometimes, with short intro and a link. Better for groups.
Twitter – Maybe, with a snappy intro and a link.
Blogs – always.