Jan 18, 2019 / in Comms Best PracticesUS Blog / by Maggie Latham

The power of social media for marketing is immense, as it is now a place where campaigns are able to greatly extend reach to engage with consumers and impact sales. These qualities also make it useful to PR teams who are able to leverage these large-scale opportunities for brand building, keeping the brand in the public eye and shown in a positive light. While PR focused on traditional outlets in the past, it is now sharing more of space with marketing on social media. If the two fields can work to support each other the result will be more holistic, successful campaigns.

Social Media and Friendly PR

Traditional PR is typically one-sided and passive whereas digital PR is able to use social media to create more effective connections. From powerful people like investors to influential bloggers, it creates the ability to engage more directly with relationships that are relevant to PR goals. These connections don’t take as long to establish, happen in real time and reach further. The same goes for social media’s ability to quickly promote and amplify earned media placements. PR can greatly improve when utilizing sites like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram as tools because of the instant and active brand awareness they establish as well as the friendly dialogue they can generate between consumers and brands.

Measuring PR

Digital PR and marketing also benefit from the insights produced by quantitative data, which can be tracked via social media numbers more accurately than from third-party sites. Software such as Cision’s media monitoring tools can help track progress and capitalize on best tactics moving forward. This is especially important when a social media campaign goes viral and PR teams need the best insight to take advantage of large-scale opportunities.

When PR and marketing teams have solid metrics and support each other to create strong campaigns, the result is more publicity and positive feelings towards the brand. Here are some examples, which were able to accomplish just that:

1. LG and Bonnaroo

In May 2018, the electronics company LG created a space in the center of the Bonnaroo music festival called “LaundROO Lounge” which functioned as a place for concertgoers to refresh and wash their clothing. LG provided 50 washers and dryers, stylers and even set up a vintage clothing swap with the company What Goes Around Comes Around. In addition, all unwanted clothes were donated to local charities. Using videos on Instagram and other social sites, LG focused on promoting LaundROO using the hashtag #getdirty specifically for the campaign. They also used the hashtag “#lifesgood” which connected their brand logo with the fun activities at Bonnaroo.

This campaign spread through social media, but most notably the event was picked up by many news outlets such as Pitchfork, Stereogum, and Paste Magazine, just to name a few. After the festival, LG continued to use content produced from the LaundROO for marketing and PR purposes as seen in the post from Facebook below.

Overall the LaundROO campaign has helped the brand become both more fun and relatable to the millennial market. It has had a lasting impact on the brand as they continue to focus on interactive and collaborative marketing.

2. NY Library’s Instagram Novels

New York City Library’s new campaign is transforming the classic novels Alice in Wonderland, The Yellow Wallpaper, and Metamorphosis into stories on their Instagram with the help of the creative advertising agency Mother in New York. NY Library’s first addition, Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll, has been posted in two separate parts to their account featuring animations by well-known designer Magoz. To read the story you must hold the screen and then lift your finger to turn the page. If you don’t hold the screen you must read quickly but you’ll also be able to see the animations, which match the theme of the story.

This campaign “aims to make great stories available even more widely” and so far it has also achieved this goal through the many media outlets reporting on the project. The simple yet bold animations mixed with real text from the novels come across clearly to a large audience.

The expectation of two more high-quality animated novels has created social media hype and the excitement from a new use of the Instagram stories feature has helped the library gain positive publicity.

3. Amazon and Jurassic World

In May 2018, Amazon drove a gigantic box with air holes around Los Angeles in a. marketing campaign for the film Jurassic World. The box also features the hashtag #AmazonFindsAWay (referencing a quote from the original film) and a shipping label, which is addressed to the two main stars of the film Owen Grady and Claire Dearing. Passers-by can activate the label by scanning with the Amazon app that leads to a page with discounts for Jurassic films. The box also encourages the public to use Alexa with the phrase “Alexa, ask Jurassic World what’s in the box?” This results in an interactive experience, complete with dinosaur sounds.

The cleverness and mystery of this, as well as the interactive features, led to an increase in social media reposts and more coverage through the brand’s collaborative efforts.

In conclusion, companies best capitalize on opportunities in their field through both cooperation between marketing and PR as well as their digital forms on social media which enable the use of helpful metrics. When marketing is bolstered by PR’s ability spread coverage and PR is also engaged in the friendliness of social marketing, brand campaigns will be strong and continue to make an impact.

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About Maggie Latham

Maggie Latham is an artist/designer, writer and small business owner. She has written for Cision on the topics of brand design, social media marketing and conscious business.