In today’s society, social media is one of the largest Internet platforms. A 2014 Pew Research Center study shows that 74% of Internet users conjointly use social media.  One can only imagine that number has exceedingly increased since then.  Social media is so prominent in today’s world that it contributes an extensive role in the reputation of an individual, company or organization.

As someone who is working in Public Relations and now responsible for the reputation of many companies, one of the most crucial things to know is the Do’s and Don’ts of social media.

Don’t: Upload anything you wouldn’t want certain people to see

Social Media is a public forum, and whether we believe it or not, anything and everything you post online is attainable for others to find, permanently.  If there are certain people or organizations you wouldn’t want to see a post, play it safe and don’t post it.

Don’t: #Don’t #Overuse #Hashtags

Hash tags are used to organize posts by topic, and make it effortless for the audience to search tweets. Posts can get perplexing and cluttered when #you #hashtag #every #word.

Don’t: Post your opinion

When posting for a client, this may be the most important thing to be aware of.  Your beliefs and your clients might be different, however, in PR it is your job to best represent your client, and that means staying true to their beliefs and values.

Don’t: Post anything with grammatical errors

It is necessary to double-check everything before being put out for a client. A spelling error makes the work look sloppy and shows lack of proofreading.

Do: Research the client

It is paramount to know whom you are representing when it comes to social media accounts. In order to accurately post for someone, one must be aware of their mission, morals, values and beliefs to ensure their social media is properly illustrating them.

 Do: Be professional

Although slang is acceptable, and also encouraged on social media, it should be easy to understand, and must look professional.  The use of offensive language should never be posted online, as it may upset the viewers and ultimately make your client look inadequate.

Do: Use Social Media as a way to network

Social Media is an ample way to make connections.  It is an essential tool, and can strongly benefit an organization when used correctly. Allowing society to become informed about what a company has to offer by the click of a button is a pretty incredible thing.

Do: Give credit where credit is due

It is perfectly acceptable to post something you found online, as long as proper credit is given to the original owner of the content.  Sharing is caring.


A tweet a day will make the followers stay. Happy Tweeting!

   

There are over 300 million users of Instagram as of December 2014. That number grew 100 million in just nine months, and is continuing to grow. Instagram is becoming a great platform for public relations; however, it is not widely used yet despite the variety of capabilities it offers. Here are a few ways to use Instagram for public relations:

A new product: post a great filtered picture of the product itself, someone using the product, or a screenshot of someone talking about the product. Make the picture simple. It shouldn’t look like an advertisement

A new employee: post a headshot and a press release of a new hire. This picture should be relaxed and natural. You can even post a picture of a welcome package they received. Try not to be too “salesy."

An upcoming event: post a picture of the venue or the city of an upcoming event. Don’t be too literal on Instagram. Be sure to use the Instagram photomap feature.

An award: Take an artsy picture of people accepting an award or even just the award itself.

Be sure to sign up for Statigram: http://iconosquare.com You can monitor your stats and promote your stream on other social networks, like Twitter and Facebook. 

   

Pinterest isn’t just for planning weddings. Here’s how to use Pinterest for public relations:

Pin things happening in your industry. Invite others (especially employees) to contribute to your board to increase collaboration.

Pin videos. Few people know you can pin videos; nonetheless, a large number of YouTube subscribers hear about a particular feed from Pinterest. It’s a largely an untapped resources.

Make all of your web properties “pinable.” In Chrome, there is a “pin it” bookmarklet in the toolbar.

Pin images primarily, but add more depth. Pinterest is a visual site, so most of your pins should be images. However, be sure to pin visual customer stories, articles, blog posts, stories, best practices, etc.

Incorporate your events and news. If your company attends/ hosts an event, holds a news conference, or achieves something, pin it!

Before you post, make sure to make sure all of your links work. There is nothing more frustrating than clicking on a link that doesn’t lead anywhere.

   

Writing is an essential skill in the public relations field. Increase your professionalism by avoiding these common spelling and grammar mistakes.


There are two periods in Washington, D.C.

Washington DC and Washington D.C are incorrect.


The Capitol vs. the capitol

Capitol Hill and The Capitol refer to the actual building. Do not capitalize the nation’s capitol when referring to the city.


Definitely

There is definitely no “a” in this word.


Weather vs. whether

Weather refers to the conditions outside (rain, sunshine, hurricanes, etc.). Whether is an expression of doubt or choice between two alternatives.


A lot

Alot is not a word; include the space between “a” and “lot.”


Embarrassment

Don’t be too embarrassed if you forget the double “r” and “double “s.” It’s a common mistake.


Principal vs. principle

Principal is the authority figure for a school. Principles are the rule they make.


Misspell

Mispell is incorrect. Be sure not to misspell this word.

   

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