Skills are the lifeblood of being a professional. You must know them, master them, embody…
By now, it should be no surprise that a large number of journalists prefer Twitter over most other social media platforms. In Muck Rack’s most recent State of Journalism report, a whopping 76% of journalists surveyed say Twitter is the most valuable social network, down 9% from the year prior.
After searching for why journalists love Twitter so much, I came across this article from the Twitter team helping journalists to leverage the platform for maximum visibility and audience engagement. If you want to leverage Twitter from a media relations and PR perspective, read these 5 reasons to follow journalists on Twitter below.
9/10 journalists are sharing their news articles via their personal Twitter feed. If you are trying to work with a journalist then you should know reading what they write is one of the most important tactics you must implement in order to pitch them effectively. By monitoring profiles of journalists, you can receive real time updates on breaking news stories they’ve written as well as ones they have enjoyed reading. It’s an important tactic if you’re considering building a relationship with them.
A lot of journalists pay attention to who engages with them on Twitter. If you’re thinking about working with a journalist then you should start commenting on stories, or posts, they’ve posted and retweet them to share the love. Another great tactic for engaging with journalists on Twitter is finding things you have in common with them. While some journalists do NOT prefer to see this type of information in a pitch, it’s still important that you have this knowledge. Building a relationship with a journalist shouldn’t be purely transactional and the common bond between you and them is something important to recognize.
According (again) to Muck Rack’s State of Journalist report, 62% of journalists are tracking their stories being shared on Twitter. You’d be surprised by the effect it can have and the chances of you working together only increase when they see your name pop up in their notifications. The other reason this is important is that you are helping to distribute their news to your feed. Clicks and views are vital to the success of journalists since most of them require readership in order to keep their role relevant within a news organization.
Similarly to monitoring journalists on Twitter, you can stay informed about their latest stories and “personal news.” This is a great way to know if a journalist has changed beats, or outlets, as well as how you might be able to reach them and know what they cover. A lot of times, reading the profile description or pinned tweet can inform you about this type of information.
For many journalists, Twitter is a dream for finding sources and asking questions. I can’t tell you how many tweets I’ve seen from journalists requesting information for a story or looking for sources to speak to about a specific topic. Timeliness is key, as always, and paying close attention to tweets from journalists you want to work with can provide you with opportunities you didn’t realize existed.
Long story short, if you are looking to work with journalists on earned media efforts and you’re deciding which social media platform to start with, choose Twitter. As a bonus, create curated lists of journalists to easily view their recent activity and to keep the most important people and information front and center.
For more insights about journalists, check out the first volume of our State of Pitching report. You can dive into journalists’ pitching preferences, their views on subject lines, how they keep their inbox organized, and more!