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  Social Media: Your Gateway to Engaging with “Media Influencers” and Increasing Your Brand Authority and Recognition

Posted by Kevinjcull on October 13, 2014

To make SEO work efficiently and build your brand authority and trust at the same time, you need public relations – not a public relations firm, but today’s cost-effective alternative to that, social media.

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Getting your name out there on social media increases your visibility and makes your brand instantly recognisable and trusted. Your content marketing’s effectiveness increases exponentially and gives you both increased brand awareness and ultimately, endorsements by third parties, which puts you ahead of the competition.

Public relations: It’s all about who you know, and social media makes it easy

Advanced social media tips allow you to build your own valuable lists of important contacts (no PR firm needed) with:

1. Facebook

Facebook’s feature Graph Search utilises the “six degrees of separation” principle. Use it to find out how you may be able to access media influencers or important reporters through your circle of. Use these names to build a prospective media contacts list.

Once you’ve built an initial list, you can leverage it by:

  • Putting together a pitch

    Run a few ads to your select “audience” before you pitch to make sure your contact has TOMA, or “top of mind awareness” about you, your brand and product before they even see the pitch.

    Send your pitch. By then, the information you sent should ring some bells for your contact in that what you send will be fuzzily familiar, but will just look like a fresh and exciting prospect that happened to land in the inbox.

  • Ask for an introduction by a mutual friend

    If they’re very good friends, you may be invited to connect with prospects directly, at which point you can ask to send them your pitch.

2. Twitter

You’ll need your social media manager to help to build lists of producers and journalists that you can send your pitch to. You want them to recognise your name so that they’re more likely to read your pitch:

  • Follow producers and key reporters
  • Find out what they’re interested in or passionate about
  • Engage with them by re-tweeting content, complimenting their work and contributing meaningfully to conversations with them
  • Relax; be natural and don’t come on too strong
  • Build up a rapport for several weeks and THEN pitch

3. LinkedIn

Look your contacts up on LinkedIn. For about $24 a month, you can send up to three direct messages to each with LinkedIn’s InMail. With this approach, you’re much more likely to be read, since delivery is guaranteed, and it’s low risk.

  • DON’T send the pitch. Instead, ask if you can email it to them and give them a brief outline.
  • Keep it brief and to the point, and end with the question (“Can I send you some more information?”) so that you’re much more likely to get a response.
  • Personalise. Spell names correctly, refer to past work, and mention just why you’re contacting them specifically. If it looks like a mass email, you’ll certainly get deleted and you could even get blocked.
  • Compliment recent work of theirs you’ve seen if possible; you can break the ice in a non-threatening way that way and build rapport.
  • Show how you can add value. (Why will your story be helpful or interesting to their audience?) It will build a case for your pitch.

After initial contact

Once you’ve made initial contact and have had rapport with those on your media list, keep nurturing. Once your story has been published, continue to foster these relationships so that eventually, you may be the go to contact for them within your industry.

Finally, it’s worth noting that these tips will work with any influential media makers, including bloggers, site owners, or other “public relations” savvy people out there.

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