Digital PR Tip: Are You Listening?

That old saying “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me” sounds good in theory. It’s not true in life and it certainly doesn’t apply to Digital PR.

Words posted online have immense power to hurt your business.

So here’s the million dollar question – Are you listening? Do you know what’s being said about you?

If you don’t have your ear to the ground, you’re at risk. A crisis can rear its ugly head and gain momentum in the blink of an online eye, so to speak. You have to be on top of these conversations 24/7 and ready to deal with any developing crisis – fast. One of the core functions of Digital Public Relations is to make sure the conversations around your brand are monitored closely and the right people are engaged with, when needed.

It’s through this constant understanding of what is being said and who is saying what, that you’re able to get a clear picture of your market and how it constantly shifts and changes. Application of chaos theory and understanding group communication dynamics gives us the key to working within the boundaries set by the community and the ability to generate new opportunities for positive conversation.

It makes no difference which industry you’re in – BtoB or BtoC, financial, travel or baby products, you have to monitor the conversation around your brand. If you’re in the food business social conversations are part and parcel of the experience. People are snapping pictures of your restaurant, your food and your wait staff on their smartphones and it’s on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter in a flash.

Human nature being what it is , we tend to rant much more than we give kudos. When a customer is upset or worse, really angry, they have a slew of options open to them to let the world know. And beware the angry customer with social media savvy – we’ve recently seen the first instance of a customer using paid tweets to reach a vast audience with a complaint. I’m sure it won’t be the last.

Manning the observation deck, as it were, can be tough. This is a very time-consuming exercise, especially if you are a larger business. Dealing with multiple time zones across the US will take its toll, if you’re doing it all on your own. If you are a global enterprise then you are on for 25 hours a day! A newborn baby will allow you more sleep.

Getting a Digital PR firm to monitor and report for you and set up adjusted strategies for your content creation schedule is a solution companies are asking us to do more and more. And we enjoy it. Our team thrives on this stuff.


Meritus Media is a PR agency in the greater Los Angeles area.

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