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Tips for Achieving Organic PR Success: Contacting Reporters through Other Channels

If you’re not using social media to communicate, what are you using it for? As the web becomes more interactive, businesses are finding the value in leveraging social media to accomplish their goals. Because public relations is all about communication (and because every journalist and his/her mother is on Twitter), don’t be afraid to think outside of the box when you reach out for PR.

There is a wealth of opportunities out there to establish a relationship with a reporter, regardless of whether or not you’re ready with a story pitch. Like all good business transactions, starting a conversation is the first step in the business relationship.

Below you’ll find five ways to catch a writer’s attention outside of traditional PR media.

01: Twitter.
Still not sure about Twitter? Reconsider your stance. Today’s most active journalists live on Twitter. It’s one of the most effective places to promote their stories—and story promotion is intrinsically linked to the livelihood of both the reporter and the publication.

Twitter also gives you an easy way to start a conversation with someone you’ve never met. Simply tag the writer in your tweet and write a thoughtful response to a tweet or story. They’re automatically notified and if they’re intrigued enough by your input, they may respond.
02: LinkedIn.
While LinkedIn is used for professional purposes, a lot of users are wary of starting relationships where they expect to be sold something. However, LinkedIn’s “groups” feature puts you in an open forum where you can build credibility in the eyes of a reporter (and the community) before you approach him or her to start a conversation.
03: Comments.
Print journalism is almost dead. Long live the era of reader feedback.

The "comments" section of an article is a great place to take part in the conversation started by the article itself. Journalists are much more likely to read a conversation going on within the context of their work—and you have a golden opportunity to build a report with that journalist and with the community reading that journalist’s work.
04: Linking.
Through Facebook, Twitter and your website, take an opportunity to post links to articles from reporters whose attention you’re trying to get. Today’s ability to collect analytics on where your traffic is coming from will expose your brand to the writer or blogger—and they may appreciate the exposure enough to open a dialogue with you.
05: Corporate Blogging.
Find a writer's comments particularly incendiary, agreeable or incomplete? Without insulting or brownnosing the writer, respond to the article with a blog post of your own. Remember: starting an intelligent debate is very different than throwing down the gauntlet.
by Gonzalo Gil Google