PR News Q&A With Krisleigh Hoermann: Build Community at the Speed of a Tweet

Krisleigh Hoermann

The speed of Twitter can be intimidating to even the most social media-savvy communicator. But Krisleigh Hoermann, community manager for the American Heart Association, believes the platform is the perfect place to host a conversation—albeit a fast-paced one—with influencers, community members and the media. Hoermann will discuss engagement tactics, how to build a following on Twitter and more at PR News’ Digital PR Summit on Feb. 16 in San Francisco. We offer a preview of her presentation here.

PR News: What are the core elements of an effective Twitter PR strategy?

Krisleigh Hoermann: You should always begin by listening. Listen to what is being said about you, about your competitors and what your target audience and brand advocates are talking about. Target your audience just as you do in traditional PR methods. Who is in your sweet spot? Find them on Twitter—if they are on Twitter—and talk to them. Think about your personality—make your corporate culture clear to your followers through your own personality. Don't forget to measure your results. Find the stats that matter to your brand and track them.

PR News: How often do you post new content or engage with your followers on Twitter? 

Hoermann: Think of Twitter as a chat. It's a faster pace than many other digital methods and therefore can handle more tweets within one day. The American Heart Association strives to send out four content-driven messages a day. We also try to respond to most, if not all, mentions of @American_Heart and be an active participant in relevant conversations around heart health and stroke. You have to scale it to your brand. Some brands only need three content-driven posts a week while others need more.

PR News: How many staffers are assigned to social media and much time are you spending a day on Twitter efforts? 

My job is social media, therefore HootSuite is running all day. We have two people actively posting from our Twitter handle and have about 10 people who are subject matter experts for different questions and content areas. Organizationally, we have about 50 account holders from national down to our affiliate staff.

PR News: What’s one tip you’ll offer attendees at the Feb. 16 Digital PR Summit?

I'll show you how fun and easy it is to engage people on Twitter—whether through content-rich posts or Twitter parties. Your community is waiting.

Attend PR News’ Digital PR Summit on Feb. 16 in San Francisco and learn more from social media experts like Krisleigh Hoermann.

Follow Regina D'Alesio: @reginadalesio