Public relations, in its most basic definition, is a communication process. Specifically, a communication process between a company or organization, and the public. The secret to making a public relations strategy successful is making sure the communication somehow brings value to the public, while raising the visibility of the brand.
Years ago, there were only a couple of options when it came to a company’s PR strategy (TV, radio, direct mail) but that has all changed with our friend, the Internet.
There are so many opportunities out there for companies to leverage their brands that it really is astounding; LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, blogging, PRWeb … the list goes on and on. So which of those are you leveraging?
While you ponder that question, I want to give you a trick I’ve recently picked up, about using hashtags in your PR strategy. And not just any hashtags. I’m talking about #trendinghashtags on Twitter.
What is a trending hashtag?
Twitter catalogs the hashtags that are getting the most traffic at any given moment. Those are known as trending hashtags. You can see these when you visit your Twitter dashboard, on the left side of the screen. Right now, since today is Election Day in the US, I’m going to assume most of us have all sorts of #ElectionDay hashtags on that list. So let’s use that as an example. (Only because it fits in very well with this article, because otherwise I avoid politics like the plague.)
Piggybacking on hashtags
I’ve seen firsthand how engagement can soar when you hitch on to a trending Twitter hashtag.
For instance, on a regular basis, I typically get a pretty good number of Twitter notifications a day. More if I’m Tweeting more frequently, less if I’m quieter. But, when I include hashtags, I’ve noticed I get a lot more engagement. And, when I include a trending hashtag, my numbers go through the roof.
If you’ve been thinking about publishing an article or blog post today, and you can somehow tie it into a trending hashtag like #ElectionDay or #ImVotingBecause, you are going to get a lot more visibility, because thousands of people are watching those hashtags right now.
Stay with me here!
Let’s use this article, again, as an example. When I publish this post today, I will be tweeting a link to it, and I will be using the #ElectionDay hashtag. So it will look something like:
What can the trending #ElectionDay hashtag teach us about increasing a brand’s #PRStrategy? [LINK to this article] #PRTips #OnlineMarketer
Here is a shorter version in my ClicktoTweet!Can the trending #ElectionDay hashtag teach us about increasing a brand’s #PRStrategy? #PRTipsClick To Tweet
Anyone who’s closely monitoring that hashtag is going to see my tweet come up. That tweet could be shared widely, and seen by thousands of people. Any number of those folks could be members of my target audience. My business will (hopefully) be viewed as one that takes PR and marketing seriously, and can provide support and assistance for anyone wanting to grow their own visibility. I’ve provided value while increasing my own visibility. Boom! #micdrop
I only used #ElectionDay because it’s huge at this moment. Every day there’s a new list of trending hashtags like #MotivationMonday and #ThrowBackThursday.
If PR is about communicating, and Twitter lets us see in a single glance what thousands of folks are talking about, it sure makes a lot of sense to me to leverage that power!
Do you use trending hashtags in your Tweets?