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Online Newsroom Best Practices and Social Media Integration Tips from Toyota

Online newsroom best practices and how to integrate social media sites into online newsrooms is something that perplexes most organizations. Granted, I’m biased because they’re an iPressroom client, but I have to say that I think Toyota’s social media communications approach is a good one.

Snap3 I monitor “online press rooms” as a keyword, so I see just about everything in the news, on blogs and in Twitter on that topic. And when it comes to online newsroom best practices, I regularly see folks praising online pressrooms that rely on PDFs, online press rooms with press release indexes with headlines and no summary blurbs, and online newsrooms with links that open in a new browser windows, none of which are web design best practices, let alone online newsroom best practices.

But on the subject of how brands should use Twitter, and whether or not Twitter should be integrated into online newsrooms, a number of questions arise. What are online newsroom best practices for Twitter integration, should companies be tweeting under their brand identity, and if they do tweet from a branded Twitter account, how do you know who you’re talking to?

Toyota social media supervisor Scott Deyager lays out a very grounded, rational approach that puts the brand before the individual, but without sacrificing the added credibility that comes with peer-to-peer word of social media campaigns, by:

  1. Putting the brand first with an @toyota Twitter feed.
  2. Including a sidebar with the individual Twitter accounts of the contributors to the branded Twitter account.
  3. Having contributors acknowledge the conversational tweets they make on the branded account by signing them, which gives respondents the opportunity to continue those conversations directly with the contributor if they like.
  4. Putting the brand first, rather than encouraging employees to promote themselves, quite possibly at the expense of the brand.

In addition to Twitter, Toyota’s online newsroom has links to all the carmaker’s social media sites from every page.

Do you like Toyota’s approach to Twitter for branded communications? Have you seen others do this as well? Or is there yet a better approach you see organizations taking to Twitter and online newsroom best practices?

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