Pinterest and social media triage

Over the weekend, I dove into Pinterest, and thought about how we can use it.

It’s pretty exciting, and there’s a lot of buzz out there. Poynter explained why it’s time to for journalists to embrace it, 10,000 words explained 5 ways Journalists can use it, and Mashable bettered this with its 7 ways Journalists Use Pinterest.

I got it. I’m on it. I’m in love with Pinterest. Trouble is, I’m also in love with Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, Foursquare, Instagram, Linkedin and of course my new passion for Google+.

That’s a lot of love.

The problem is, as newsroom editors everywhere know, while more there are more and more ways to share our amazing content – there aren’t any more people to do the sharing.

In our newsroom, we’ve developed a kind of social media triage.

Case study: The announcement about 7 a.m. this morning that there will be a Madonna concert in Ottawa this September. This is, dear reader, a huge deal – and was quickly trending locally on Twitter.

Our Arts writer Peter Simpson was on the story first, and wrote this post in his Big Beat blog. (At the time of writing this post, there was a giant ad at the top of his post for tickets to the Madonna event… clever)

Then we Tweeted a link:

Then, Posted it on our Facebook page: (note that Simpson himself had posted it on our wall moments before)

And our Google+ page? Well, some thought went into it, but our crack online news editor decided that our Google+ audience – generally more interested in ‘big-thinker’ pieces, wouldn’t care too much about Madonna. So we left if off the page and posted instead a rezoning story out of City Hall.

(The right call? Maybe yes, maybe no – even smarty pants like to know about big events, no?)

After all this, we sent out an email news alert to our subscribers.

Note: When/if we are granted a Pinterest account, this would be a great place to put our photos and reviews of Madonna’s last show in Ottawa.

All this, for one story.  I’m sure you’re out there, thinking we missed  something.

But the fact is – we have two folks working on our online team when this story broke. They are doing everything for our site, updating apps for iPad, Playbook, and other tablets… they are posting to our mobile site.

So there has to be an order for how we operate in social media: Twitter first to be fast (and first), Facebook to share with the masses, Google+ later because of its smaller audience.. and then, lastly … the email news alert.

Do we have the order right? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

(Image shared by Tina Boyd on Facebook)

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3 thoughts on “Pinterest and social media triage

  1. Of course – we can’t forget dialogue. I think the best place for readers to talk directly to Peter about the announcement would be on his blog and Twitter.

  2. Good point, Joe. It’s about dialogue and nothing else. What are people saying? Just listen and play it by ear and engage people. But spreading ourselves too thin means we’re just pushing content out like we always have.

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