Pitching to bloggers what PR pros and bloggers should know

What bloggers and PR pros need to know.

There are many resources for understanding how to pitch to bloggers, some of the advice may seem like common sense to you, or it may seem foreign. The general guidelines are as follows: read the blogger’s posts, understand the blogger’s target audience, and know that whatever you are pitching should be something the blogger’s readers are interested in. Here are some excellent sources to reference for more detailed tips, the Social Media Explorer, Problogger, and pretty much everywhere littering the internet you can find tips on good (or bad) pitching to bloggers.

There are many notions of how PR should be, but what many fail to realize is the dependency of a PR pro on their client. A lot of time (unfortunately, but realistically) the amount of time PR pros can dedicate to researching and pitching to specific bloggers is dependent on a budget. While it may be ideal to research the blogger in-depth and discover what you can provide the blogger as incentive for their readers, sometimes the amount of hours in PR services clients are willing to be billed for is the bottom line. This isn’t to say that PR pros are not selective when adding blogger to press lists. Some PR pros are selective and do the amount of research they are able to conduct within time constraints; however, not every pitch can be specifically tailored to each blogger. Pro pros select the bloggers they identify as influential, and from there sometimes PR pros must treat bloggers as professional journalists, not always as citizen bloggers.

I feel that with an understanding of both parties, perhaps bloggers and PR pros can both grow to find a mutual understanding with the others’ profession. This understanding could increase the relationship between the two professions and perhaps help bloggers understand why sometimes they are pitched to more as if they were a journalist.

Until next time (or tomorrow),

Jessi

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Social Media Tips from the PR World

Why PR is better than marketing: the social media edition.

I am not writing this post to accent any feelings about marking professionals, I am simply trying to exert that you don’t go to an electronic store for clothing.

Social media can be an excellent tool in building a reputation within psychographic communities. But there are some rules, just like everything. This week at my internship we’ve touched upon clients’ wants to be on Facebook and Twitter, because they think they should be. But should these highly technical companies be Facebook and Twitter, or other social media sites?

Not every social media outlet is applicable for your business. Don’t try to go to a social media platform and hope to gain followers; go to social media platforms where potential customers already are. With some research you should be able to figure out which social media outlets, if any, a company should be participating in. So if the research shows that the target audiences you wish to reach are not active in specific online communities, give it up don’t start a social media site you won’t maintain. Perhaps in the future a shift will occur and you’ll be able to jump on the bandwagon. But you have to make sure you hop on, on the right foot.

If social media turns out to be for you, congrats, but you can never turn back. Know from the get-go that creating a Facebook fan page, a Twitter page and what ever else does not equal obtaining instantaneous followers. There are so many tactics one can execute at this stage (and you’d have to hire me to get the full effect ;)), but let’s touch on the basics.

Brand your pages, you want your potential customers to know who you are no matter what page they are viewing. Provide relevant and interesting content; this often requires linking to longer articles (that your company can provide or industry relevant news). Engage individuals, comment back, ask questions… you get the idea. Listen to what people are saying. This particular piece can go a long way. If you are not listening, you are able to identify trends, potential problems, etc. as well.

Do not initiate a social media outlet if you are not up to doing it and doing it well. Social media is not only strategic, but also time-consuming and time sensitive. If you are interested in reading further, this post from the Social Media Examiner is a good reference. Hopefully you’ve learned from this blog that PR’s tie to relationship building and communication trumps the markers aspect… on the social media front. Say it don’t spray it.

Jessi

Greetings, from a public relations student.

My name is Jessi McKain and I am going to be graduating from the University of Oregon shortly with a degree in Journalism with a concentration in Public Relations and a minor in Biology. You can read more about me here. This is not my first blog, as some of you may know – or may have read. For outdoor/workout adventures you can read my musings in JessiAdventuresALot.

This blog will serve in a professional capacity, in contrast to my adventure blog. Professional topics pertaining primarily to public relations, technology, biology and other professional topics as I see fit. While you can check out more of my experience on my Visual CV or on LinkedIn,currently I am a public relations intern at Mobility PR(MoPR). MoPR is a public relations agency in the technology, more specifically mobile, sector. Throughout the duration of my internship you may find a lot of my posts to be technology related, or somehow related to my internship.

Enough formalities, let’s get down to business! My next post will be up soon. I enjoy a good conversation, thoughts, input and more so feel free to comment to my postings.

I leave you with a photograph of me at my last public relations internship with the Oregon International Air Show.

Jessi