Social media could be very overwhelming to a journalist, but not only are social networks a great way to publicize articles, they can be an integral aspect in getting “the big scoop” or developing a successful package.
Get to know the marketplace
By observing on social media, reporters can see what’s trending now. While Google Trends can be a useful tool, Twitter is also a great tool for trends, and LinkedIn’s Company Pages for getting insights into particular companies, including recent hires.
Discover story ideas
LinkedIn groups are another way to find out what people are talking about in an industry. Many publications and industry verticals have their own dedicated group on the network. A reporter can follow a discussion and related comments, and a story might take off from there.
LinkedIn’s advanced search a “phenomenal tool” for B2B journalists. Its search tool is robust; journalists can search by current or past title, company, geographic location and more.
Social networks allow reporters to get real-time reactions from readers during a breaking story.
Monitor the competition
Reporters should follow other journalists and publications that cover the same beat, as this will give a journalist insight into new potential sources, events and reader demographics.
Share unpublished content
Some content won’t make it to print or on the web, but it doesn’t have to go to waste. Great photos? Tweet or Instagram those!
Google+ Authorship tool can improve how content is found through search.
Live-covering an event allows readers who missed out on the show to stay informed. It also builds a reporter’s reputation as a trusted brand. Using show hashtags, publicists can directly contact a reporter for exclusive information.
Connect with readers
Social media breaks down the wall between reporter and reader. Google+’s Hangout feature can increase transparency even more. With Hangout, up to 10 people can video chat live.
Constantly posting relevant information can improve a reporter’s standing in the industry. Reporters should list their current publication and covered beats in their Twitter bio and allow readers to subscribe to their public Facebook postings.
Support the community
Trade publishers are an important part of an industry, and it is their duty to keep conversations active. Reporters must be a good community member – that means re-tweeting other people, asking questions, responding to them.
As a rule, one-third of content posted on social media should be a reporter’s stories, one-third should be conversing with followers and one-third should be interesting, relative information from other sources.