What have you REALLY achieved through social media?
Social media, you sassy thang! You swooped into our personal lives like a flash of communicative light, tweeting and booking us right in the face! We loved it! And don’t forget all the more creative ways we can break up with our significant others!
In the professional world, social media has crept in more slowly, but it has certainly taken hold. PR professionals have been eager to adopt social media because it is easy for us to see the value. There are so many great things about social media; the interwebs are crammed full of PR people talking about outreach, interaction, building a base, branding and all those other intangibles. I’m not knocking those things, they are important, but what has social media REALLY done for you lately?
(Raises hand) Ooo, ooo, I have a story!!
One of our clients, Caleris, has a great back-story about insourcing jobs to the rural Midwest versus sending jobs overseas. You’ve probably left your house or turned on a TV/computer in the last few years, so you know this is a huge political topic as it ties into the economy. Caleris is a business process outsourcer (BPO) provider, with locations in rural Iowa, which means companies outsource technical and back end processes to Caleris.Working with Caleris saves companies money while simultaneously creating U.S. jobs and preventing overseas outsourcing.
President Obama recently held an “Insourcing Forum” at the White House to speak with executives at U.S. companies about insourcing jobs to the US versus outsourcing them overseas. As any good PR practitioner would do, I started reading what reporters were writing on the topic to see if Caleris could fit in. A producer at CNBC tweeted (Twitter talk for posted) a link to her story on the forum, so I checked it out. I knew the topic was super timely and that she could benefit from talking to Caleris, but I couldn’t’ find her email or phone number anywhere so I just flat out sent her a tweet with a link to a press release on Caleris (@Caleris).
Almost immediately, I had secured the interest of one of the top producers at one of the top stations in the U.S. This initial Twitter exchange opened the line of communication and were able to secure an interview with the co-founders of Caleris and the producer. Once the producer was able to speak with the co-founders, she had an even better understanding of what a great model Caleris is for companies to keep and grow jobs within the U.S.
The interview resulted in a story that ran on the same day as the State of the Union address, which spent considerable time focusing on the need to insource jobs to rural America and decrease the outsourcing of jobs overseas. Tweet-a-lee-di, that’s good coverage!
Read the CNBC story here: Heading the President Call for Job Creation.
Now to be fair, this isn’t something that happens a lot. I’m sure a lot of my peers out there are saying, “so what? We tweet reporters all time. You just got lucky.” I disagree. It wasn’t Twitter that got us the coverage, it was timing and content. Twitter just gave me the medium to reach the reporter. If you don’t have the staples in place like a great press release/story idea and the know-how to utilize current events to your advantage, you can tweet all the live long day and never get a response.
Ultimately, social media is a great way to get the ball rollin’, as they say.
What has social media done for YOU lately?
-Wendy Parish, Account Specialist