Twitter, http://twitter.com/, is a great way to build buzz about your products and services. But if you are using it for media relations activities, here are a few tips to keep in mind:
1. Keep it professional.
Although you want to reach out to followers on a personal level, keep it professional and provide valuable information. Your followers really don’t care what you had for breakfast, that you are on the way to the doctor’s office or that you have to pick your kids up from school.
2. Provide value.
Use your Tweets to share interesting news and offer benefits to the reader. Link to pertinent blog posts, other Tweets, discounts, and information your followers want to know about. You’ll build credibility, and your followers will start to look forward to what you have to say.
3. Respond quickly.
Check your account on a regular basis, and respond to direct messages and followers who ask questions and provide suggestions. Give feedback on a timely basis to show that “you are home,” and that your business cares about its customers.
4. Be responsible.
While many media members use Twitter, this is not necessarily the right place to pitch a story idea. If you already have a relationship with the person, and are communicating through Twitter, it’s fine. But if you are just pitching your client or a new product or service out of the blue, this medium is not the right choice.
Instead, call the media member and introduce yourself or send a message via e-mail. This way, you can provide the right information and the right time without being limited to space. After all, you want to make a good, first impression.
Time to Tweet!
Twitter is a great communication tool to meet new customers, share information and build credibility. But to be an effective part of your public relations efforts, plan what you are going to Tweet in advance and think about what your followers want. Otherwise, you’ll waste time and effort… and even hurt your business reputation.