Twitter As A Modern-Day Newsroom

Despite contrary belief, noteworthy accounts recently being banned and competitor social media platforms rising to the top to cure pandemic boredom, Twitter is very, very much alive. In fact, with over 330 million users already, it is projected to grow by 2.4% this year. In terms of audience, 63% of users are between the ages of 35 and 65 with two-thirds of that being male. While opinions may vary, when it comes to using Twitter for a brand strategy, it is best for breaking news, engaging customers, relationship building and creating your brand voice. It can also go one step further and be used as a one-stop-shop for public relations – your own personal newsroom, if you will. 

Today’s media landscape is vastly summed up to reporters doing more and more of their own content. Newsrooms are seeing a big reduction in their staff, which means a reporter is researching their story, scheduling interviews and filming their own b-roll, then going back to the newsroom to edit footage, writing a script for an anchor, uploading to the web and scheduling for social media. In addition, journalists are more often focused on a range of topics and producing more than one story in a day versus having a specialty. TL;DR: that’s a lot of work for one person. 

As a result, many journalists turn to Twitter to source information, get first-hand encounters of breaking news or simply just to share news at a faster pace by sharing user-generated content. So, when you are putting together your strategy, be sure that the media is a clearly-defined target audience and that you are curating content useful to them. Keep in mind: 

  • No social media platform is the same; don’t copy and paste your Facebook post to Twitter and expect it to have the same results. 
  • Be truthful, credible and accurate. Regardless of platform, social media is always on the record. 
  • Exposure is not just about your logo on the news or a mention in an article; influencers are more important than ever before. Engage and curate for community, industry and social media influencers.  

As a communications professional, nine times out of ten, a pitch is ghosted or rejected. The same can be said for what you tweet, especially as you work to discover why your audience chooses to follow you. While not everything you tweet will find its way to a media opportunity or high-profile account, that tenth tweet can create magic. Case in point: a recent tweet we scheduled for REMSA, northern Nevada’s emergency medical services provider, reminded residents that, despite the pandemic, it is safe and important to call 9-1-1 if you are experiencing an emergency. The tweet was picked up by KTVN, aired during multiple newscasts, was posted online, and had potential to reach about 100,000 people via television and web. 

Twitter Post from REMSA

Another good use of Twitter is to use it to initiate one-on-one communication with reporters and influencers, but with the understanding that there are boundaries. You are trying to contact a real person – a busy person at that – so don’t overwhelm them with tags, replies and direct messages. Send ONE private message that gets to the point, while also showing you did your research. Don’t contact a food writer to cover your new beauty product or a hard news reporter to talk about fashion trends. Most importantly, be respectful and be kind. 

You can’t force these things to happen, but you can think of Twitter as the fastest way to get your message out there. Traditional public relations takes time – writing a press release, scheduling interviews, waiting for a story to air or publish – but with Twitter you are in control. 

  • Be sure your tweet covers the 5 W’s – who, what, where, when and why and include an accompanying photo or video in case a news source does want to utilize it. 
  • Give your tweets (and yourself) purpose and ensure it is reflected in your copy. 
  • Use quotable language
  • Use credible sources until you are the credible source 
  • Be honest, but let your personality shine 

Last, know how to measure success, and we don’t mean look at how many likes you have. Was the only like from someone you want to champion your brand? Did you make a connection, even if the outcome wasn’t as desired? When you think of quality over quantity, you are on the right track to deciding your success. 

Our Thoughts

Marketing Communications Agility in a Post-COVID World | NCET Biz Tips

VP of Public Relations, Chrisie Yabu, penned an article in the Reno Gazette Journal for NCET’s Biz Tips. When COVID-19 hit, we all had to re-think things through the lens of the pandemic and how it was affecting each audience. The pace at which we adapt and adjust our strategies are even more critical given the speed and vast reach of social media. As we look to marcom in an ever-changing world, keep these strategies in mind. 1. Maintain...

PRSA Celebrates the Champions of Public Relations

In May, the Sierra Nevada Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) recognized public relations, communications and marketing work and professionals from across the region at their annual Silver Spike Awards. The theme of the event was “Champions,” acknowledging that PR practitioners have been among the unsung heroes of the COVID-19 pandemic as they remained committed to success and survival – for themselves, for their community and for their clients. We sent our personal salute to our...

Santa Maria Valley Paid People to Visit. And It Worked.

The Visit Santa Maria Valley team, like every other destination marketing organization, was feeling the adverse effects on travel due to COVID-19. Santa Barbara County was still in the “purple tier.” This tier indicated a widespread status, meaning many non-essential indoor business operations still remained closed, and high daily averages of COVID-19 cases (per 100K) as well as a high positivity rate of COVID-19, were still in effect. In December 2020, the pandemic showed no signs of slowing. In...