Framing Social PR: Q&A With Shonali Burke
To connect with your audience, you need to break through the noise and make an impact. But how?
Start building a social PR framework.
At her recent webinar, “Unleashing The Power of Social PR,” Shonali Burke shared tips on how to build and motivate your community by using social media effectively.
Shonali answered many webinar attendees’ questions, but she wasn’t able to get to them all. Here are her responses to the remaining unanswered questions:
Q: I manage the social media for a small stationery company and we get nearly zero engagement from customers. We see more feedback on Instagram posts, and nearly nothing on Twitter. Our audience is older and less tech savvy – advice for engaging consumers?
A: There could be a number of reasons for this: your content is not appealing to your target audience, or it’s getting lost and needs a boost via a paid component, or they’re simply not on these platforms, or, even if they are, their behavior is completely different.
So what I would do before anything else is some audience research. Delve into what motivates them, as well as which social networks they gravitate towards, and why.
Ultimately your goal is to build your customer base, correct? So find out what makes those customers tick, and then adjust your strategy accordingly.
Q: How do you alter this framework for B2B marketing?
A: The beauty of the 7C Social PR Framework is that it doesn’t need alteration – because as a framework, it provides a structure within which you can build your own unique program.
If you go through this blog post, you can see I’ve given you both B2B and B2C examples that illustrate the principles of the framework. So use the framework as the overarching approach to your Social PR efforts.
Then, you can use the audit worksheet in the e-book to identify which of your Cs need immediate work, and which can wait a bit. As you audit your Cs, you’ll learn how to map out your strategy which will, as a result, be completely unique and relevant for your particular situation.
If anything, this framework is a bit easier to apply in a B2B context, simply because one’s audiences are so much more defined. B2C can get really crazy, but again, if you stay focused, it doesn’t have to be.
Q: What is a common mistake that you’ve seen PR professionals make when developing a messaging strategy?
A: Not developing proof points or the rationale for their messaging. You can have the catchiest tagline in the world, but if you’re called on the claims you’re making, you have to be able to substantiate them.
So when you’re developing your messaging, you really have to put it through the wringer and see if it holds up, way before you go out with it publicly.
Q: Can you expand on corollary? I’m a little unclear on that C.
A: The first C in the 7C Social PR Framework stands for “corollary” which, according to Merriam-Webster, is “something that naturally follows or results from another thing.”
I used that as the starting point for the Framework to underscore the importance of first knowing what our business objectives are, and then tying our communication strategy to those objectives.
I’ve seen far too many great PR pros and campaigns brought down by the lack of strategy, because they were following shiny objects and getting bedazzled by cool tactics that might be a lot of fun, but didn’t do anything from a business point of view.
That’s why I think audits are so important, and why I included a worksheet in the e-book. Because if you really understand the business results your organization needs to drive, and with which audience(s), you’ll start to devise programs that are a logical extension of those goals. And you’ll set yourself up for success.
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