Marketing has become an ever-changing world in which businesses have to stay on top of rapidly evolving digital and technological trends. The number of ways in which to make your brand visible is constantly increasing with more and more media platforms entering the market. As a result, a growing number of businesses are combining marketing channels in order to increase their chances of visibility. Two channels that have naturally become the go-to when creating a comprehensive marketing strategy are Public Relations (PR) and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).
But how exactly do SEO and PR integrate? We’ll explain the similarities and differences, and also give you some best-practices for combining your SEO and PR strategies that will benefit your business.
How are PR and SEO related?
The goal of a Public Relations professional is to raise awareness, shape reputations and build recognition of a brand, service, product or business. They achieve this through strategically placed unpaid and earned communications campaigns that will ultimately increase visibility, and enable that brand or business to become more connected to the target audience i.e. through building brand loyalty.
Now think of the role of an SEO Specialist. Typically, their goal is to increase the online visibility of a business, brand, product etc. in order to attract a larger audience and again, make that audience convert. One way they do this is outreach: contacting influential or related websites and media platforms to gain links back to the website they are trying to increase visibility for.
The two goals sound pretty similar, right? That’s because they are. Of course, it’s important to remember that each discipline will have many more tasks to undertake which may be incomparable. However, when it comes to outreach and attracting your target audience, PR and SEO can work very well together when integrated correctly.
The benefits of PR and SEO working together
Google currently places high-importance on the number of quality inbound links to a website. As we mentioned above, one of the many roles of an SEO Specialist is to enable outreach to gain such links. PR and SEO can work together to create an outreach schedule that will identify the target audience, and ensure that inbound links are created on all press releases and online content. This will ensure that there is no overlap or missed opportunities between the two disciplines.
Another ranking factor Google takes into consideration is the creation of content that is purposeful and unique. This is a Public Relations professional’s forté however, it may not always be optimised from an SEO point of view. By combining both skillsets this will ensure that content is purposeful for its target audience and is keyword optimised for ranking.
SEO best-practices for PR activity
Here are our recommendations for best practices that will help PR and SEO work effectively together, so helping to put you a step ahead of the competition:
1. Optimise any external links you earn
Through the eyes of an SEO, links are a perfect opportunity to help boost rankings. This can be achieved through the following:
- Using relevant anchor text – this is the visible text displayed by the hyperlink. This text should be relevant to the page it is linking to, and if possible should include a target keyword/phrase for that page. However, do remember to keep it natural for authenticity.
- Link to a landing page, not a search query page – as a search query page isn’t indexable the link won’t provide much benefit to rankings. Linking to a great landing page using that relevant anchor text as discussed above will assist with conversions.
2. Coordinate your messages
Always ensure that your messaging is clear and consistent across your business so leaving less room for dilution with your collective audience. It doesn’t take much to divert users away from the path that you’re encouraging them to take, so don’t confuse them by putting multiple messages in front of them at one time. Clarity is the key.
3. Ensure that the content you’re putting out there is search worthy
A good example of this may be the promotion of a new product which uses specialist terminology within the product specification. You write a great piece on the product using this terminology and distribute it to the relevant outlets. You wait… and nothing.
After some further research, you find that the target audience for this product uses/recognises completely different terminology when searching. Keyword research would be the first port of call for an SEO specialist when doing topic research before writing content. Try searching the topic and see what results come up on the first page of the SERPs. Look at related words and phrases and at what successful competitors are doing. Also, try to think: “What would I search for if I was looking for this product?”.
4. Repurpose great content
When you put out a piece of great content, it usually doesn’t take long for it to get replaced by a more current piece. In this situation, you should be thinking: “Could I repurpose this piece elsewhere?”. Perhaps there’s a blog platform that may help you reach a new audience? Maybe you could create an infographic that would be perfect for sharing? Whatever the avenue, don’t let an opportunity go to waste.
5. Learn from one another
The saying ‘knowledge is power’ is very true. PR gaining insight into SEO can mean extra reach and that larger audience can lead to increased conversions. The same goes for SEO learning from PR. Writing provocative, engaging content is what PR does best, and that is exactly the kind of content SEO specialists should also be putting out there. In an overcrowded market eye-catching and original content that is also optimised is what is required to stand out – so learn from each other. Schedule some time together to brainstorm ideas and share your specialist tips so that each of you can benefit from each other’s expertise.
Looking for an agency to boost your marketing potential? Talk to ExtraMile today
Here at ExtraMile, our Public Relations and Search Engine Marketing teams regularly work together to create comprehensive marketing strategies for our clients. We’ll get to know you, your business and your offering so that you can be sure that the message we’re sending is one that will really capture your audience. Tell us your marketing needs today to begin your ExtraMile journey.