Adventures of an Intern: Social Media Newsrooms
Welcome back to the second installment of my blog series. I’m sure you’re as ready as I am for a long, relaxing Fourth of July weekend- don’t you wish every weekend was three days? I’m enjoying them as much as I possibly can, because I hear you don’t get summer vacation when you graduate from college. After my little introduction last weekend, I wanted to actually get into what my blog series will be about. I will be looking at how different corporate newsrooms leverage social media to communicate their news to the public. We’re talking HP, Intel, IBM, Oracle…the list could go on, but I’ll save it for another blog post. Given the focus of my research is on the social aspect of corporate newsrooms, who better to look at than the social networking sites themselves? Although these sites may not have an official newsroom where you can go for announcements, they still manage to communicate their developments with the public. I looked at three main sites: Facebook, Twitter and Linked In.
92% of social network users have Facebook accounts, so creating a Fan page to promote business on this social media giant is a no brainer. As a result, Facebook uses their own Fan page as a corporate newsroom,posting updates and new features on their wall to keep their fans and users informed. Users can comment or “Like” these posts, which is an excellent source of first hand feedback for the company. On the Facebook Fan Page, each comment tends to have more than 10,000 “Likes” and thousands of comments. This is clearly an effective way of collecting feedback.
Although Facebook has capabilities to communicate total content, Twitter has the ability to continue to make that content relevant through consistent 140 character tweets. Twitter also uses itself to promote news surrounding the network, as a continually updated newsroom. If you elect to follow @twitter, you can receive real time updates in your Timeline about corporate news and stay up to speed on all of the new additions to the tweetosphere.
Since this social network is oriented to professionals, it seems appropriate that the press room is very straightforward. The chronological archives of press releases and announcements are organized in an up to date press center. Since the point of LinkedIn is to create and maintain professional connections, the no frills Press Center provides concise updated articles and even covers Linked In news from other countries. As far as communication goes, you may have to click through once or twice but the newsroom is able to fully transmit company news.
My Key Takeaways
While the first set of companies I researched did not have a traditional newsroom or one that is even close to Cisco’s “The Network,” I learned that the communication of information to different fans is done far more casually. In a corporate newsroom like “The Network”, all news is shared in a news story or press release, with the first paragraph or so posted with an option to click through, where as social networking sites rely on short snappy teasers with links attached. You can get the condensed version of the news, but it isn’t absolutely necessary to click through. In the case of Facebook and Twitter, utilizing their own product is the best way to attract business and drive traffic to their sites. LinkedIn still promotes itself, but takes a characteristically business-like approach when amplifying news. Social networking sites as a whole are an essential arena for any kind of business; now the only hard part will be maintaining employee productivity.
Speaking of, it’s time to go and enjoy the weekend. Have a safe and happy 4th of July!