Yum! Free stuff for the New Year! The presentation below is a social media primer for PRs and communications people I gave to the Dutch Architecture PR Group in Rotterdam last week. If you are in B2B services PR or marketing it also applies to you! Let’s have a quick look what’s in the presentation…
- Spot the difference between social networks, social media and social web
- How many people are using it and what they are doing there
- Connect, content & conversation – a little framework to start thinking in
- Facebook – The Very Unofficial Architecture League Table 2010
- Useful links for more free stuff!
Challenges when getting started
Overall, my biggest insight from this great meeting was that PR and Comms people in Architecture are essentially no different from those in B2B PR and marketing. They all face the similar challenges when getting started. To sum it up, I reckon there’s three main ones…
How do I get my personal skill levels up?
The challenge: as a PR you already know about social media. But how do you find the time to build knowledge about the channels? What is the right framework to think in? You are already mad busy. Introducing a new routine takes time, practice and effort.
My suggestion: start by doing it for yourself first. Get a Google reader account. Search for blogs in your sector. Subscribe. Read. Work your Linkedin network. Join groups. Start commenting on other people’s discussions. Get your own Twitter channel. Search. Listen. Learn. Build your knowledge on the fly. Try. Test. See what works. Adjust. Once you have discovered what works for you, take it and apply it for one element of your business.
How do I get senior level buy-in?
The challenge: case studies specific to your sector may be hard to come by. Often people don’t want to advertise their success: just in case the competition follow suit. In some industries, such as Architecture, there are simply not many available. Which leaves a Catch 22. While there are fewer people doing it in your sector, it’s harder to get buy-in. But then again, that means there are more opportunities!
My suggestion: start with education. There’s loads of good presentations around. This is an easy place to start. Try this one. This one. How about a little video? Drop them to your senior partners. Pique their interest. If you do find case studies – pass them on. Show you are looking for opportunities. Keep learning! When you have piqued their interest enough, they will start asking the right questions. And because you have been learning on your own first, you will have the answers!
Where do I start?
The challenge: even when you get i
nterest, even if you make a great business case, there are still not many B2B service providers that will jump in with both feet (budget and belief). You are closer, but not quite there yet.
My suggestion: make your own little case study. Virtually every PR does press releases. An easy way in is to take the press release you stick on your website, and post it online at a free press release site. There’s a few free channels in the presentation. Just follow the instructions!
When you are really rocking, check out pressitt.com and move towards a social media release. Note the differences in how an SMR is constructed! Make sure to link all this stuff back to your website and track the views/responses. Success? Show your boss!
A last note on online press releases and SMRs: remember that on the social web, there is no such thing as a mass audience. People are looking for specific content relevant to them. So take your generic press release and think of how you need to change the text to make it more relevant to, let’s say, your two main target audiences. Adjust accordingly!
That’s all for now folks, thanks again to the Dutch Architecture PR Group. I thoroughly enjoyed myself. Good luck and don’t forget to let me know what you think! Look forward to hearing from you!