For many businesses, using social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook as a public relations tool is vital. A business with an effective social media strategy can reach new audiences, connect with customers and similar businesses and be considered tech-savvy by maintaining a Twitter account.
When a business signs up for a Twitter account, it is hard to gauge the scope of that account. People across the world can read what the business posts on Twitter, which gives Twitter a vaster scope than traditional forms of advertising. Not all businesses cater to customers on a global scale, but given how the Internet has opened the doors to a global marketplace, the business can reach potential new customers through Twitter.
A favorable reason to use Twitter as a public relations tool is that it’s free. Granted, a company may have to hire a social networking expert or even a team to deal with Twitter and other social media subjects, but Twitter itself does not have a cost for use. Unlike traditional forms of advertising, such as via broadcast and print media, businesses can Tweet as much as they want to flood the market with their message at no cost.
An invaluable benefit of using social media for a business’ public relations strategy is that it gives the business the ability to connect and interact with its customers on a regular basis. When Twitter-using customers begin to follow the business on Twitter, they can send questions to the company about its products, service, location or personnel. A customer representative can then answer those questions, which also shows other customers how the business has positive customer interaction.
Though many businesses in a variety of fields use social media, those that use it effectively develop a strong reputation as being cutting-edge. Many consumers are knowledgeable, and can tell the difference between a company with a savvy social media strategy and one that just runs headlong into social media without a plan. Regardless of a company’s industry, effective public relations over Twitter can show the business in a positive light.
Transparency is a key characteristic of any successful business’ public relations strategy. If a rumor begins to circulate about the business, for example, it can use Twitter to instantly substantiate or diffuse the rumor. Instead of using traditional means of preparing a press release that may or may not be spread by newspapers and TV stations, the business can share the necessary facts with its customer base quickly. Customers can also pose questions based on the rumors the company can choose to answer.