15 December 2020|Business Growth, Latest Posts, Launching a business, Marketing, PR, Promotion
By Jack Terry, Content Manager at Eulogy Public relations has traditionally been about gaining positive exposure for a brand, business or organisation through coverage on TV, radio, and in print media. But digital PR has seen increasing popularity over the last few years as comms professionals capitalise on its strategic importance beyond just ‘coverage’.
Digital PR brings many benefits for a business. It can help improve your reputation, gain you exposure to new audiences, increase your credibility, and help generate commercial leads. It can also help websites rank higher in online searches, appearing above competitors in what is an increasingly crowded digital landscape.
Improving how a website ranks in search is called Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), and it’s now a mainstay of any sophisticated, strategic marketing programme. Around 33% of us click on the first search result in Google, and 75% of users never click through to page 2, so you needto be ranking high if you want clicks.
Digital PR and SEO share many of the same goals: they’re both used to increase brand awareness, improve reputation and credibility, and bring in more leads. They can support and reinforce each other, making your marketing more integrated, and therefore that much more effective.
Improving your SEO takes time, but one of the fastest ways to start ranking higher is to get more backlinks to your website from other sites, because this improves your domain authority.
What is Domain Authority and why is it important for SEO?
Every website has a score between 1-100 which determines how optimised it is. This is called your site’s domain authority. The higher the number, the better your site performs, and the more likely it is to be the number one ranking result in Google.
Your domain authority is based on many different factors: how easy your site is to navigate for users, the amount of keywords it is ranking for, the amount of traffic it gets and how long people spend on it. One of the most important factors is the amount of links it has directed to it, and how high-quality (or not) those links are.
A link from another website is taken as a sign of trust by Google, like an endorsement. The more links the website has, the more trustworthy it is deemed, and the more likely it will be able to help a user with a given query.
A link from a site with a higher domain authority is worth more than one with a lower score, so you want as many high-quality sites linking to yours as possible. This is where Digital PR comes in.
How digital PR can help you rank higher in search
News sites have some of the highest DA scores on the internet, because of the amount of high-quality content they publish, and the amount of traffic they get. A successful digital PR campaign will result in dozens or even hundreds of these sites linking to yours, boosting the SEO, and hopefully bringing a health injection of referral traffic to boot.
This starts a positive feedback loop: your site ranks higher in search so gets more visitors, who are more likely to talk about you, which increases your ranking, so you get more visitors, until you take over the internet.
Earned links are worth more to Google’s algorithm than paid ones, so PR is your best bet to getting a healthy portfolio of quality organic backlinks.
It’s worth researching what you want to rank for, and how you measure success, as SEO has many different metrics you could use to determine how well your site is performing. Do you want to rank for a specific niche within your industry? Or are you a small business looking to rank high in local searches? A focused digital PR campaign can change how high you rank, and what you rank for.
Running multiple campaigns can end up with you ranking for many different search terms and keywords, helping you stay ahead of the pack.
How social media can help your SEO
But it’s not all about coverage. On top of this, digital PR can increase your social media mentions, which can also help improve your SEO, and nothing gets more traction on social than big news stories.
Social media can also help increase your traffic thanks to people sharing any articles you’re featured in on social media, meaning more people will read it who might never have heard of you otherwise. A good digital PR campaign won’t just give you more links, it will get people talking about you, increasing your audience, and driving more traffic to your site.
How SEO is changing digital PR
More PR agencies are now hiring SEO executives and content marketers who understand how search works, because clients are increasingly interested in improving their SEO over getting coverage.
One good article in the paper might bring in a few leads, but a few good links can bring in business for years, because you’re that much easier to find online.
Any SEO you are doing should be accompanied by a digital PR campaign, getting you backlinks from high-quality sites to ensure you’ll rank competitively.
Syndicated content, blogging networks, influencer marketing and online reviews can all be part of a digital PR campaign designed to improve SEO and earn more backlinks – and will start showing results in relatively little time.
Improving your SEO also means it’s more likely that people will only see branded content or positive results when they search for you, instead of any negative stories.
The best thing about digital PR and SEO is that you can start today, right after reading this article. Whether you’re a business looking to bring in more leads, or an agency looking to impress your clients, making some minor tweaks to how you approach publicity can have a huge knock-on effect on how you’re found online, resulting in more traffic, a bigger audience, and more leads.
One campaign can make all the difference.
About the Author:
Jack Terry is a Content Manager at Eulogy, a digital marketing and comms agency based in London. See more from him and the rest of the gang on their Twitter @Eulogy_London