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Action, Interaction and Reaction from the Ritz team

Are you ready to get engaged?

Posted: April 18, 2013 - 9:00 PM ET - by Elisabeth

Her version of “slapstick”was so entertaining and informative, our readers wanted to hear from Molly Watson again! She’s as engaging as always this week, sharing her thoughts on social media.


The goal with social media is to “engage” with your target audiences and in doing so to establish credibility, build confidence, gain exposure and enhance reputation. Yet social networking still represents a black hole for many. Writing a blog, sharing online commentary, engaging on Twitter, Pinterest and in other social communities represent what initially feels like a big risk in an unfamiliar area of communication. What should I say? What if I say the wrong thing? What if no one responds?


According to research conducted by the Pew Internet & American Life Project,
as of December 2012, 67% of online adults use social networking sites.


Whether we like it or not, social media is powerful and influential, and here to stay.  It is increasingly important to understand whether and how it makes sense for your business and clients.

Understanding Your Audience

Like traditional media, the first step in effective social media planning requires an understanding of your audiences, to determine what sites you use and the type of content you need to develop or re-purpose. For example, women are mostly likely using Facebook and Pinterest; African-Americans, Latinos and adults ages 18-29 are more likely to use Instagram; urban residents are more widely using Twitter.[i]

Pictures & videos as social currency

Pictures are still worth a thousand words. Sites like YouTube and Flickr have changed the accessibility of visuals, making it easy to produce original material as well as repurpose events being recorded for other use – such as speeches, lectures, athletic events and ceremonies.

On creating content

YouTube is an online video sharing service that makes it easy to share videos by linking to them or embedding them in Web sites or blogs.  Most business leaders are very comfortable speaking, so recording a few minutes of her thoughts on a topic (i.e., a current news story) can be quick and effective.

On repurposing content

A big advantage of online resources is that you can reuse – “repurpose” – your news. For example, a strategic video message can be posted on YouTube and then used to enhance messages elsewhere – for instance, the video link can be posted on your Web site, Facebook, Twitter and more). This extends the life of the story and increases the number of people it reaches. Other examples of content that can be repurposed include footage of media interviews, lectures and news articles.

While it may initially feel overwhelming to tackle the world of social media, it can be an exciting medium to tell distinctive stories and build relationships where none existed before. The New Media world is hungry for well told stories. Exploring the options and choosing what works best for you will get you engaged.

[i] http://pewinternet.org/Reports/2013/Social-media-users/The-State-of-Social-Media-Users.aspx

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