The modern PR professional utilizes a wide variety of online platforms to get the word out about a client or cause. From Facebook to Hootsuite, Twitter to LinkedIn, the volume, expanse and power of social sharing networks are virtually endless.
One up-and-coming and thus far significantly underrated platform, in my opinion, is Storify: a social sharing service that allows the user to tell a story using content pulled directly from the web. Storify helps you collect the best posts, photos, links, and tweets about a certain topic, plug them into a webpage, and turn them into an easy-to-follow “social story.”
Not only is a Storify story easy to read, it is also aesthetically “easy on the eyes.” Instead of readers becoming inundated with text-overload, they can watch videos, see multiple tweets, view screenshots, and access links, giving the story a greater depth.
Just to name a few of Storify’s many benefits:
- Storify is free of charge, user-friendly, and you can sign up through Facebook or Twitter.
- It allows users to scan for content across various social media sites straight from the Storify platform. The user can then select desired content and embed it directly into a Storify presentation.
- Other users are able to “like,” comment, share or embed a Storify story on a website. This creates endless possibilities for distribution and conversation surrounding a story.
- It’s a unique presentation tool. Just log in, select your presentation, and scroll as you speak.
- The web content used for Storify immediately notifies the original author, and essentially builds an instantaneous list of sources that may possibly view and share the story.
Whether you are promoting a brand/client/event, explaining a crisis, or developing a strategic plan, Storify’s many functions can aid execution and delivery:
Promotion: One way PR pros can promote a brand, client or event via Storify is to “tell” the clients’ story by using links to existing material, such as press releases, videos, images, and screenshots (of their social media presence, perhaps). On a single page, you can include a more impressive expanse of information than most other services offer. For events, you can pull tweets from all over Twitter about the event and publish the story the day of to give status updates and provide information to attendees.
Crisis Explanation: In college, I used Storify to give a presentation on Target’s late 2013 credit card security breach. I was able to pull supporting information, such as screenshots, news coverage, articles, and videos into a single story, yielding a simple, efficient and thorough presentation that was easy to understand and visually appealing.
Breaking News: Recently, news networks have begun utilizing Storify to compile coverage updates for breaking news. They are able to pull tweets, posts and images from various websites and social networks onto one page, providing a constant, chronological flow of updates. Instead of having to visit multiple media outlets for updates, one can simply visit a particular news channel’s Storify page, a one-stop-shop for finding out what they need to know from a variety of sources and outlets.
Although the uses I’ve highlighted are only the tip of the iceberg, I hope they have offered insight into Storify’s seemingly endless capabilities. Because Storify allows users to utilize so many other social media sites and tools, a brand or organization can creatively employ Storify in a way that best suits its needs.