Tweeting as Zen Practice for #PR Masters


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Full disclosure: I’m addicted to Twitter chats — and possibly to Twitter. But after this week’s time spent on #pr20chat, #journchat, and #harocall, I’m willing to defend my Twitterholism as actual on-the-job PR-skill honing.

It isn’t just because of the tips and trends you can follow so quickly with well-chosen connections and hashtags; it’s actually the — don’t laugh — intellectual process of tweeting itself. If you think Twitter is a playground for the near-criminally attention-span deficient, well, okay, I won’t argue with you there. But it’s also repeated practice — in fact, perfect training-ground — for the kind of tight, motivating, informative writing that moves the metrics of PR.

To swipe some of the discussion from yesterday’s #harocall, reporters want to be pitched via email, and they want the subject of that email pitch to be exciting, brief, and on-point. (No promising the cure for cancer and then actually pitching a new line of vacuum cleaners.) If you can get them to click to open instead of delete, they will then give your pitch the time it takes to read one sentence.

Think about that last phrase again: they will give your pitch the time it takes to read one sentence. Ouch, huh?

A lot of us who work in public relations do so in part because we love to write. And for a lot of writers, it is humbling to realize that others don’t weep at the beauty of our long-winded eloquence. Yep, Polonius here; I’ll get to the point.

Tweeting gives you 140 characters to sell an idea. And you get visible feedback on your success or failure (tallied in replies, retweets, and follows). A prolific tweeter could offer a torrent of uncensored stream-of-consciousness ramblings — or an ever-increasingly shrewd eye for great stories and ideas, packaged in tight headlines for an interested audience. So a PR flack who practices the art of tweeting might actually make a reporter weep with joy.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Kate Schackai
Kate combines a technical understanding of web 2.0 with classic PR savvy, resulting in online communications that both humans and Google love. She joins Crawford from WordPress development firm TCWebsite, where she worked in online marketing and search engine optimization.


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