We discussed what a Social Media Release in an article in our resources section of PressRoom but as a brief explanation, Brian Solis describes Social Media Releases as:
Social media releases are designed to get the conversation going, providing readers with the ability to disseminate information and multimedia, bookmark and share the content, and in turn, spark threads. They also serve a purpose of providing new media influencers with the information they need, in one package, in order to write a full story, their way – without having to carve out the BS of a traditional release or pitch.
The whole idea of a Social Media Release is to give the reader more than just plain text and create a better experience resulting in increased engagement.
Whether it is a old media press release or a social media release the headline is still the most important factor of any press release because it is the first thing the audience will see and it will have to grab their attention. By writing a press release then emailing it to your chosen editors all you need to do write write the release with one target audience in mind. That audience is the Editor you’re sending it to because that editor will then re-work the article so that it is tailored to their publication’s audience. With a social media release the middle process of the editor editing your words no longer exists and your article can find itself in front of the general public as you wrote it. For this reason you need to keep 3 audiences in mind when writing a social media release; traditional media, online media bloggers/digital influencers, and the general public. Beyond these 3 audiences you must also consider the 3 types of reader of your article; Humans, Search Engines and Social Media Sites.
When we talk about “Readers” being different from the “Audience” it’s because of the way the general public discover your news on Google and how an update posted on a social network may appear.
By writing a social media release with the search engines in mind, it will improve the reach of the release because by applying simple Keyword tactics it will improve the ranking of the release and be published higher up the search engine results list for the topic. It is vital to have your main keywords in the headline of your article and within the <h1> tag.
Just like with newspapers it is beneficial to break up the body of your social media release with subheadings for two reasons. The first is the same as the traditional media, in that a large piece of writing can seem intimidating to the audience and discourage them from reading the article. The second is that it is also good to have subtitles in the <h2> tag because the search engines also rank these highly along with the Headline.
It goes without saying that you should make your news as interesting as possible. The audience is always try to consume the news as quickly as possible and with a social media releases the audience will generally view the additional media before reading the text (after they have been initially hooked by the headline) in the hope that everything the release is mentioning will be within it. Never the less, even if the audience view the media first it is vital to keep your body text to a minimum and get the main points of the news story out early while the reader’s attention is still high. Its important to cater for scan readers by breaking up the body text with subheadings, as mentioned above, and also highlight key points in bold or italic to draw attention the those. Links that are blue, bold and underlined also draws attention, so include links where possible.
This is where a social media release holds most of it’s advantages over a traditional media release. Videos, photos and links all strengthen the impact of your news release and with many publications having an online version of all the articles they publish and by having this extra content strengthens your article.
When articles are shared over various social network sites, the posts that are created generally pull through an image to add extra depth to the to audience’s update. This is done automatically and the image used is normally the first image found on the article. As mentioned before, “readers” of the article include social networking site, so its important to know that the first image used should be the best image you have that portrays the article’s subject.
Quick Social Media Sharing
Making your article easier to share over various social networks will increase the amount of time people share it with their peers. If someone wants to share your article with their friends don’t make them jump through hoops to do so!
Thanks to simple Social Media bookmarking widgets it’s easy to let people share your news by providing the reader with all their social media options in one place.
- reach 3 audiences: traditional media, online media bloggers/digital influencers, and the general public.
- be understandable to 3 kinds of readers: humans, search engines, and social networking sites.
- The Headline is the most important factor to catch the audience’s attention.
- Keep body copy short and to the point.
- Break up large amounts of text with subheadings
For more information and a demostration how PressRoom can help you reach a larger audience with your news please feel free to contact us.