Beyond PR

Jul 28, 2011

Flipboard as a Content Reflection Tool

The Flipboard rendition of the @prnewswire Twitter feed

You did everything by the book. Your company now has a Facebook page, a Twitter account, photos on Flickr, an active blog with contributors from throughout your organization, and a multitude of other social media presences that you track on an Excel sheet with columns for IDs and passwords.

You work hard coordinating a fresh flow of content to these networks and deserve a like, a +1 and a follow. You’re doing well, my friend.

But when was the last time you stopped and took a good long look at yourself in the proverbial mirror?

As marketers, we start tweeting,blogging and sharing with a certain business intent, but it’s easy to keep cranking out content while getting quite lost or side-tracked from your original objectives.

Sometimes you have to stop and look back to see where you’re going.

Not long after I got my iPad last year I downloaded the popular app Flipboard. If you’re not familiar with it, Flipboard collects content from social networks and displays it in magazine fashion.

One of the first things I connected to my Flipboard was @PRNewswire, and I was immediately struck by the fact that my content looked like a real publication.

I was mesmerized by it.

Sitting in my armchair with my feet up on a Saturday morning, I got a fresh perspective on what @PRNewswire had become, and it actually helped clarify what I wanted it to be. I knew all along that I wanted it to be super informative about issues in our industry, but until that Saturday morning I really didn’t have a clear concept of how it was coming across.

For the most part, I was successful in creating something that was a combination trade publication and meetup, but it wasn’t perfect. The “not working” bits became glaringly obvious in this format, making it much easier for me to adjust.

Now I stop regularly and look back through the Flipboard looking glass.

Along with Twitter, try looking at your Facebook, blog, Flickr, Instagram or anything else you have with an RSS feed through Flipboard. To add, just click on the “More” tab and do a search. Flipboard will give you available options.

Through Flipboard I learned how to balance content to provide a more pleasant experience for the reader, creating something I, myself would want to read, in my armchair on a Saturday morning.

Let me know what you learn.

Author Victoria Harres is PR Newswire’s director of audience development and the voice of @PRNewswire.

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2 Comments on Blog Post Title

Sarah Skerik 10:05 EDT on Jul 28, 2011

I will admit to being vain enough to spend quite a lot of time admiring (preening? oogling?) our output – on the blog, via Twitter, via Facebook – on Flipboard. It also makes my Google Reader content look pretty slick too.

You raise a good point about how the visual presentation of content via Flipboard adds a certain je ne sais quoi to the information. It’s more visually appealing, engaging and memorable – at least to me. I spend more time on page with an app like Flipboard than I do on a Twitter client.

Victoria Harres 12:16 EDT on Jul 28, 2011

Sarah – I think as content creators, we have the responsibility to look in the mirror often and do oodles of preening. Our audience deserves that.

As to spending more time on a page with Flipboard, I suppose it goes to the idea of visual communications. It just works. Something presented in an interesting visual manner is going to get more attention. — Vicky

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