As I was reading some status updates (otherwise known as “tweets”) on Twitter today I started thinking about how most of us use social media. In general, we use social media to:
- Interact with our friends, families, and colleagues
- Network with others who have similar personal and professional interests
- Promote ourselves
- Promote our blogs
- Promote our companies
- Promote/discuss important causes, upcoming events or share relevant news
- Help improve search engine results for ourselves, our blogs, products, or companies.
We should be using internet PR campaigns for all of the reasons above (except maybe interacting with our friends, families and colleagues 🙂 ). By distributing search-engine-optimized press releases we can promote our personal brand, blogs, products, company, important causes, or upcoming events. These press releases will help improve search engine results for you depending on the topic and keywords used when distributing the PR.
Just as we post a tweet or status update every time we publish a new blog, we should be distributing new internet press releases any time we have any positive news about the above topics. While a tweet or status update will only reach your network (though some users networks are very large), it is still limited in scope compared to how many people you can reach with a well-written press release distributed online.
When distributing through a newswire or professional internet PR agency, your press release will be usually distributed to over 100,000 opt-in journalists, newsrooms, radio and tv stations, blogs, and other media outlets. These sites and people, if interested in the topic, will then redistribute the press release….alas, viral marketing. As the press release is re-posted on other sites, you will see your search engine rankings improve, hits to your blog or site increase, as well as an uptick in prospective customers, inquiries, and/or readers.
Of course, there is one major downside when comparing internet PR to promoting via social media sites: submitting PRs cost money while social media sites are free to promote your message. However, I think that we should be using both internet vehicles to promote our messages. To maximize this concept and improve your search rankings, follow these steps:
- Have a press release written and distributed on the internet.
- Promote that link on Twitter, FriendFeed, Facebook, MySpace, and any other social media sites you use.
- Post the press release in the media/press section of your site.
- Either post the PR on your blog or write a similar post and publish at the same time of distribution.
Using some or all of these suggestions will help you to promote your message.
What are some ways that you have found to be successful in promoting any of the above concepts? How did you promote it? What mistakes did you make along the way?