Dec 08, 2010

Free Publicity Tools from ProfNet

Did you know free publicity tools available from ProfNet, can help you promote your organizations’ experts, connect with media, bloggers, and peers, and stay on top of journalist queries for expert sources?  As budgets dwindle and PR departments continue to do more with fewer resources, we thought that highlighting some of the free PR services from ProfNet would be useful to you.

Tweeting urgent queries from journalists seeking sources:  @ProfNet

Journalists on deadline seeking sources have long turned to ProfNet for help.  Today, our expert network also taps the power of Twitter.  Urgent, last minute queries from reporters are tweeted from the @ProfNet account.  Follow that account and keep an eye on it for last minute opportunities for coverage.   And while you’re at it, be sure to watch for the monthly #connectchat, a dialogue on Twitter hosted by @ProfNet.

If you see a tweet from @ProfNet that is right on target with your (or your expert’s) expertise, it’s important to respond right away.  Reporters are on deadline – this is no time to show up late.   Other tips to help you respond successfully include:

  • Put all basic contact info: name, title, phone numbers and e-mail addresses, both for the suggested source and for yourself in your emailed response.
  • Include a  brief summary of the source’s relevant credentials, and a summary of the source’s perspective
  • Copy and paste the query title or language from the Tweet in your subject line, so the reporter can quickly recognize your message as a response to his/her query.
  • Do not send attachments, unless the reporter has specifically asked for them.  At this stage, you’ll do better keeping it short and sweet, and sending a link to more detailed information.
  • Link to your ProfNet Connect profile to deliver more information (more on that below.)

Connecting communicators, experts, media and bloggers:

More than 40,000 communicators, experts and media can be found on ProfNet Connect, a free an interactive community designed to foster dialogue and connections between experts and media.  The key to success on ProfNet Connect?  Your (or your expert’s) profile. Your profiles – and those you create for the experts you’re promoting – are the cornerstones of your presence on ProfNet Connect.  There, you can add rich details of your expertise, along with additional content such as white papers and articles.  In addition to attracting visibility on the ProfNet Connect network, profiles can also be shared, and are great ways to provide additional information on an expert without creating a huge email file with multiple, unwieldy attachments. Profiles have the added bonus of being search engine friendly – providing one more outlet for your information on the web, which helps build your online visibility.   In addition, relevant expert profiles can be embedded into your press releases, using ProfNet links.

ProfNet Links – embedding and distributing expert profiles

ProfNet Links enables you to embed links to your experts’ ProfNet Connect profiles within press releases, promoting the availability of the expert. This helps journalists reading the press release to take immediate action to pursue the story by reviewing information on experts or sources for quotation, creating new exposure for your experts and increasing the chance that your story will get used.

PR Newswire will include ProfNet Links at no charge with any press release issued.   . All that’s required is a ProfNet Connect profile, and a quick registration process that will link your experts with your Online Member Center account enabling you to select and include relevant experts with each press release.

Ready to get started?  Here’s what you need to do.

  • Follow @profnet on Twitter.  While you’re at it, follow @prnewswire too, for even more information on media, new media, and journalism.
  • Go to http://www.profnetconnect.com and build your own profile. Once you’ve done that, you’ll be able to add profiles for any experts you wish to promote, as well.
  • Be sure to put your PR Newswire account number in your profile.  Doing so will link your expert profiles with the Online Member Center, enabling you to select and embed expert profiles for each press release you issue.
  • Start interacting with the ProfNet Connect community.  Blog posts are a great way to introduce your expertise.

Take advantage of these free publicity services from ProfNet and PR Newswire, and watch your PR programs and online visibility grow!

Authored by Sarah Skerik, VP social media, PR Newswire.

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