The pathway to credibility in the modern world is the marriage of traditional and digital PR.
By Karla Jo Helms
When you walk down the street everywhere you look you will see someone with a cell phone up to their ear. Sometimes you see cars driving all over the road and that’s when you realize they are using their cell phone. How about when you are shopping in the store and you thought someone spoke to you and when you turn around they are using their cell phone? Cell phones are every place you turn and now with the iPhone and Android, they are equipped to allow you to run your entire life on a tiny gadget.
What does this say to a business owner? It says you’d better get on board now with digital media so you are riding the wave when it really begins to take off with Web 3.0. Digital media is coercing business owners to change their PR and marketing strategies yet the trouble is, digital media is so new that many businesses know they must convert however they have no idea how to go about it. In addition to hiring a first-class PR professional that knows how to help you transition into digital media, here are a few tips to help you understand how PR ties into digital media and how you can use it to reach your target market in a big way.
Traditional PR Ties into Digital Media
It is necessary to understand traditional PR before you can even think about using digital media. Traditional PR involves a myriad of different avenues that reach people to get them to think about you and your company the way you want them to think. These techniques must be mastered in order to be able to transition into digital media.
You Must Know Marketing “Netiquette”
Just because digital media is in the growth phase doesn’t mean there are no guidelines for proper marketing. If you do not understand Internet marketing “netiquette” you cannot possibly apply PR to digital media.
For example, there are protocols you must follow for social media, search engine marketing, social media optimization, search engine optimization, email marketing, website promotion for both PCs and mobile devices, video marketing, and promoting a product through other Internet marketing techniques.
Word travels quickly online and even more so with our increasingly mobile society so you must have a handle on this or your business could tank very quickly.
Digital Media is All About Offering Quality Information
Although there are people who simply blast out a message on Twitter to promote their product what they do not realize is people are tuning them out and telling others to tune them out because this is the equivalent to spamming. When you simply blurt out “buy my product” people will turn you off rather quickly.
This is because the Internet is mostly about obtaining information and people search online to find quality info. For this reason and more, your PR campaign online is about establishing you as an expert in your industry. If you offer useful and quality information backed by a careful strategy, then people will be interested in learning more about the product you offer. This is why there is an art to promoting yourself and your company online.
You Must Have Knowledge of the Relationship to Digital Media and Organic Searches
“Organic search results” are listings on search engine results pages that appear because of their relevance to the search terms, as opposed to their being advertisements. ~wikipedia.org
When you use PR with digital media and more specifically, social media, everything you post on social media sites is indexed by the search engines. This means that not only do you have to plan a PR strategy for the content you are going to post, you also have to know how to optimize what you post according to search engine criteria. Even those little 140-character tweets contain a lot of PR muscle and are listed in the search results.
Social bookmarking strategies must be optimized for organic searches, video posts have to be tagged so your target market can find your content. Anything you post in forums or on social bookmarking sites such as Digg must have a plan and be optimized for your target market, and much more. You have to have a handle on this before you engage in PR with digital media.
Make Sure You Know How to Use Digital Media Tools
In previous articles, we mentioned how social media is simply a tool for delivering your message to your target market to create critical mass. Practical application is another aspect you must have a handle on so you know how to use the different tools online to get your message out to your target audience. You must also have knowledge of what each tool does and the end result it will produce for your PR campaign. Once you understand this you can create a PR strategy for each tool you choose to use for delivering your messages along with a plan for maintaining the campaign.
There are a lot of considerations that go along with PR and digital media which is why you should enlist the expertise of an experienced PR professional to get the job done right. The tips we discussed here will help you, however, if you are trying to concentrate on getting your business going, it can be a lot of work to take the time to learn the knowledge you need to use PR successfully with digital media. This is where a distinguished PR professional can be your vehicle for getting your business up and running faster and smarter.