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Tuesday Tips: Social Media “Must-Haves” For 2012

By now, it’s no surprise that social media is where the action is happening in the PR world.  Clients have Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr pages; they check in on Foursquare at events and often have product demos on YouTube.

While all this social interaction is important, it’s how you use these services that determines how “socially” smart you really are.  Below are few key “must-haves” that every PR practitioner should know for 2012.

Presence – This is crucial!  We all have had that person that we’re so excited to find on Twitter or Facebook only to find that they’re never there.  Nothing is more disappointing than a “tweetless tweeter,” especially if it’s a company or person you admirer.   So make sure you’re seen.  Try to make it a point to use Tumblr a few times a week, post something interesting to your Facebook wall daily, and Tweet several times a day.

Content – Having social platforms is one thing, but maintaining these platforms with interesting content is another.   You want content to be relevant and newsworthy but it can also be educational and fun.  Think about what you’re reading on the internet;  is it worth sharing?  Are you keeping readers, “likers”, and followers engaged? Is it “ahead of the curve” or yesterday’s news? Most importantly, don’t tweet what you haven’t read.

Following/Followers– Presence and content are one thing, but if no one is reading or interacting with what you have to say then your social media isn’t working for you.  The dialogue you’ve started with your content will help keep your followers interested and make them feel like you’re involved and invested in this social platform.  It’s also important that you follow people that you find to be influential in your industry.  We love industry newsmakers and aggregators like PR Newser,  PRDaily.com and publisher Mark Ragan’s twitter @MarkRaganCEO.

Plan – This is last but certainly not least.  What do you hope to gain from your presence, content, and followers?  Build a plan and set goals. Some examples include attracting specific types of followers; engaging Facebook fans on an issue; or attracting commenters or RTs.  Set realistic goals and build a social media plan for yourself or work with your client to help them build their plan.

What are some of your social media “must-haves”?

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