Longtime industry speaker and aimClear friend of many years, Lisa Buyer, released her debut book, Social PR Secrets, in September 2013. After reading the book and pondering everything Lisa had to share, we decided to celebrate her success with a book review. Without further ado, prepare yourself for a thought-provoking session of social PR secrets!
Social PR Secrets
In this field-guide-of-a-literary snack, packed full of tips of the trade, Lisa shares wins and losses experienced by blending PR & Social in this ever-changing industry. In Social PR Secrets, she takes us back to the day she was first introduced to Google, Facebook, and everything in between. Lisa describes how marketers quickly scrambled to adopt social media platforms, master Google search results, and to optimize the ever popular press release, which became lighter, prettier and more digital.
The introduction of digital content created new opportunity for brands. Twitter joined the list of PR tools as yet another industry game changer. PR professionals were now able to share news and content in real-time. The future of this industry would soon include a blend of organic and paid as professionals started promoting content in social channels through ads targeted to specific audiences. Wow! PR was traditionally difficult to measure and quantify, but quickly became all about KPIs and ROI.
- Get the news first! Here are some Social PR & Media Relations Resources: Newsle, PitchEngine, HARO (Help a Reporter Out), and more…
- Discover which #Hashtags are trending by using these handy sites: Hashtracking.com, Social Mention and Rite Tag.
- Add a PR live chat to your company’s news room or homepage – give reporters, or anyone immediate access to information.
- Create 3 versions of a company press release: 1. For paid distribution that includes a logo, photos & videos. 2. A version for the company blog, which might be shorter or a little less formal. 3. A website version that varies slightly from both the blog and paid.
- Create authentic and newsworthy content that people care about and want to share.
The PR department of a company used to be – lets face it – pretty self-centered. It was all about the brand. Today, it’s more about promoting newsworthy content that supports your brand philosophies, but isn’t always talking about your brand. Most companies have a hard time with the idea of owning their own blog and continuously coming up with content to share. Lisa suggests a few out of the box blog post ideas to help get the ball rolling:
- Guest Blog Posts
- How-to Guides
- Case Studies & more.
A great new years resolution is to create an editorial calendar for content promotion. Keeping track of all of your web content on one calendar is a secret to success. Keep yourself accountable by planning release dates for press releases, blog posts, email marketing plans, PPC advertising, and social media postings on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube and more. Lisa also includes recommendations for packaging your content to be shared on social channels, killer tips on community management, and key take aways on paid amplification.
They used to say, “There’s no such thing as bad publicity.” Today, a negative experience with a brand can get out of control fast. In this section of the book, Lisa shares personal, yet relatable experiences of how a brand, company or name can be negatively affected by social media, and what steps you should take to get back on top.
Keep in mind these important PR secrets when training employees on what you do when disaster strikes. Remember, your employees are social, and can be excellent brand advocates. They can also destroy your reputation with personal online activity. Create an employee social media manual, and manage your potential risk by training employees on acceptable and unacceptable online behavior. Increase consistency around your brand by learning to effectively communicate to your employees about your brand’s culture, voice, and message.
No company wants to devise a strategy for when disaster happens, but it’s absolutely necessary. When tragedy rears its ugly head, there are a few things that are important to remember:
1. Be human. Acknowledge what’s happening.
2. Be real. Stop all automated posts.
3. Be credible. Report and share news, but confirm sources and facts first.
4. Be caring & considerate. Consider sensitive subject matter. Take a few days off from your normal editorial calendar.
6. Be alert. Get together with your team to make everyone aware of what’s happening.
7. Have a clean slate. Consider taking down recent posts that may be offensive to current events.
Words of Wisdom
Finally, Lisa shares some of her personal and professional wisdom: “More has changed in public relations and the media in the last five years than in the last 100 years.” Today, it’s all about being real and maintaining relationships with your audience, even if that means making mistakes, taking a step back, apologizing, and starting new. Most importantly, it’s encouraged to think outside the box and try something different.
“Don’t sit around and think how you can be like other people, brands or companies. Define your own way, your own structure for operating and the creative processes that drive your purpose and objectives”
If you’re ready to have Lisa Buyer whisper sweet social PR secrets into your ear before bed (assuming you’re reading before bed), so you can rest easy knowing you’re prepared to conquer any situation ahead, go out a pick yourself up a copy of Social PR Secrets today!
“@lisabuyer is a scary little mash up of what it’s actually like to implement hybrid digital PR. Of all the thought leaders we’ve interacted with, Lisa’s one of the few that totally walks the walk. She thinks about PR from the perspective of social psychographic distribution by organic and paid channels for the win. Social PR Secrets is an easy to consume handbook laced with tasty ideas and techniques, useful for PR professionals at any level.”
-Marty Weintraub – Founder & Evangelist, aimClear®
As an aside, there a couple of necessary shout-outs. Sarah Evans, a fellow industry rock star and friend, contributed the foreword. Sarah sets the tone with her praises for Lisa’s work ethic, and dedication. She says, “Consider Social PR Secrets the communication professional’s modern-day beginner’s handbook. It may appear to have a light hearted or whimsical approach but therein lies its brilliance.” Sarah hit the nail on the head. This guide for integrated PR and Social strategy is key for rocketing your business into present day. Also kudos go to Lauren Litwinka of Deep Cereal for the rockin illustrations (in the book and this post).
About the Author
Lisa Buyer is a speaker, journalist, and educator on the topic of public relations and how it is influenced by social media and search engine optimization. She is a graduate of the University of Florida College of Journalism with more than 20 years experience as a public relations agency owner. Lisa had experience with the traditional fundamentals of public relations, corporate communications and branding with today’s influence of digital media. In her spare time, you can find Lisa practicing yoga or surfing the waves in Celebration, Florida where she lives with her family. Learn more about Lisa and her new book at SocialPRSecrets.com.
Social PR Secrets is the first book in a series, others to come include: SEO PR Secrets and Twitter PR Secrets. Keep your eyes peeled for them in early 2014.