Carefully Crafted on August 24

Adding Social Elements to PR-Driven Launches

What’s your goal when launching a new product?

Making an assumption here, but it’s probably safe to assume that one of the main goals is to disseminate information so it reaches your target markets. For example, when you pitch the media to cover your new product, you’re doing so because you want to let their readers know, right?

Let’s talk about how social media fits into the plan. In the past week, we’ve seen two creative launches/announcements incorporate social elements:

  • Hubspot announced its acquisition of oneforty, Inc, via a “tweetable blog post.” oneforty, among other things, is a Twitter app directory, so of course it makes sense that they “twitter-ized” the release. Per the Wall Street Journal: “What made the press announcement different was that it was in the form of a series of about a dozen tweets, complete with handles, hashtags and “tweet this” buttons.”  MY TAKE: Brilliant! I love this. While press releases still have their place, the audience for a release isn’t always strictly traditional media, which means PR people can have a bit more creative freedom. Services like Pitchengine incorporate features to encourage social sharing because it’s all about getting the news in the hands of the right audience. And, if you’re targeting an online crowd, like Hubspot’s audience, then why not look for ways to jazz up a release to amplify the news online? As we help clients with PR for product launches, you can be sure we’ll think about how to incorporate this kind of social sharing into our efforts.
  • When the UFC announced a partnership with Fox Sports, they nailed the elements of a social PR launch. From tweeting a teaser and sharing a photo of the press release being distributed … to streaming the press conference on UStream and Facebook — this announcement effectively integrated traditional and digital PR. As Digital Royalty blogged, “Social media has changed the way news breaks around the world. Knowing this, UFC and Fox Sports leveraged real-time conversations when fans were most engaged to increase their social footprint, extend reach of the news and amplify their message around the world. The result: a deeply integrated, syndicated and cross-promotional Social PR win.” MY TAKE: What I love about this is how they added social elements to “traditional” PR tactics. Live-streaming a press conference isn’t new, but streaming it on Facebook adds a twist that brings the information directly to your fan base in real-time. As PR people, we spend countless hours in front of our computers emailing reporters. Why not post a photo of that to give people a behind-the-scenes peak into the action?

The next time you’re developing a product launch or major announcement, review your plan with a social-media lens. Identify additional opportunities to involve social channels to extend the message’s reach among targeted online constituents/communities.

What are some of your favorite examples of social PR launches? Share away in the comments! (And if it’s your own work, feel free to leave a link. A little bragging is a good thing!)


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