At this moment, SEO and PR are almost exclusively linked because the most important SEO factors are backlinks and content which are the natural outputs of PR. A mistake that companies don’t realize they are doing is approaching SEO and PR as two separate things. Because of that, it can reduce the effectiveness of both activities and it can also increase the costs when managed as separate entities. It is definitely possible to create a combined SEO PR strategy to increase effectiveness and while minimizing on costs.
This guide will help your business understand how to build an SEO PR strategy, the factors that we will look at are:
- How to create a combined PR & SEO content strategy
- Guest posting for SEO
- How to win press mentions with backlinks
- When and how to syndicate content
- How press releases can (and can’t) benefit SEO
How are PR & SEO linked?
The question that you may have or are curious about before we dive into the different factors of combined PR & SEO strategy is: how are they both linked?
One of the most important parts of SEO is backlinks. You need to get the right type of backlinks preferably from high authority sites that are within your niche. In relation to PR, the whole point of digital PR is to get media coverage in online publications. That is where backlinks come in. When you get media coverage through PR, the article will usually have a backlink to your site.
Content is obviously very important in this case because if you want to rank for as many positive keywords, you need to create organic traffic through high quality content in order to win earned media. Because of this, you can be efficient and get more value out of combining your SEO and PR content efforts.
It is important that what users find when they are searching for your brand name is a positive one. It is always about first impressions when you want people to engage in your brand. You need to focus on all aspects of PR rather than just your website and social profiles. They also want to see that your brand has been mentioned on high authority websites like directories and review sites, it shows that you are a credible business. PR will help you do that.
Combining your SEO and PR content strategies
Before we begin, what are the main keywords that you want to capture with your website?
Once you have figured that out, you can go from there.
Step 1) Think about the best words to describe your product or service, use short descriptive terms.
Step 2) Use a keyword explorer tool like SEMrush or Keyword Finder once you have figured out your main keywords. Explore all related keywords and see the monthly search volume that they can bring in and what their difficulty score is. Ride the fine line between good monthly volume and lower difficulty.
Step 3) Figure out the type of content that you want to create to capture the searches from potential customers and users. Use handy dandy Google for that and just look at the content that is ranking on page one.
Step 4) The research that you do with your keywords will not only inform the type of content that you need to create, it also ties into your PR strategy. It enables you to plan guest posts on subjects related to your media and content campaigns that will help your online presence. It also gives you the knowledge of what keywords to use when you are writing press releases and the keywords that you should set up media monitor for.
What to do/ What not to do when guest blogging for SEO
What to do:
Guest blogging is one of the best tactics in PR SEO strategy. You can build your exposure and credibility in your target market by increasing your digital footprint and also earn backlinks from high authority websites.
When it comes to guest blogging, there are some things that you need to know and remember. You can get backlinks from author byline/bios and within the body of the actual article. But, you need to make sure that the websites that you are pitching to actually have author bios for guest posts, which will generally include a backlink to the author’s website.
An important thing to remember is that there are two types of backlinks; follow and no-follow. A no-follow backlink has no value to the website that it is linking to besides link diversity. This means that when you are guest blogging for the purpose of SEO, you only want to guest posts on website that offer “follow” backlinks with the ability to increase your SEO power.
To figure that out, you can check in advance using the MOZ SEO toolbar whether the backlinks from the host site are follow or no-follow. In the SEO industry, the opinion is that contextual backlinks have more value than the ones within the author byline.
When it comes to inserting backlinks on your own site, make sure that they are editorially relevant to your topic and the main text isn’t just filled with keywords.
What not to do:
It is equally as important to understand what not to do when it comes to guest posting. Do NOT guest post just for the sake of earning backlinks. Approach every guest article with the idea that you are trying to establish yourself as a thought-leader providing valuable insight to your readers.
Make sure that every article you write is original. Take your time to make it your own and avoid rewriting variations of the same article to get it published on different sites. Don’t submit content that already exists on any of your sites. Lastly, try and avoid low authority or quality looking sites. Your aim is to reach top tier sites first.
Winning press mentions with backlinks
Getting press mentions is a staple part of any type of PR output. You can achieve this by providing journalists with a unique story angle about your industry. You need to remember that journalists don’t want to report the same news that everyone else is writing about, they want unique content and original sources.
When a journalist uses you as a source, you will get a backlink. That is ultimately what you want to achieve.
Pressfarm PR Agency monitors thousands of journalists within its network to ensure that whatever story they are writing, if you a Pressfarm customer and can provide input to these journalists’ stories, Pressfarm will pith your input and ensure that you get a mention in the article. Sign up for this under the campaign package on Pressfarm today.
Option 1: The Proactive Approach
This means that you need to know whats happening in real time. The second something new happens, you are there to add your input.
Step 1: Set up media monitoring in place to keep track of everything that is going on in your industry.
Step 2: Once you have your media monitoring is up and running, you need to have a list of main journalists so that you know who to contact when the time is right.
Step 3: You’ve been using media monitoring and already have your list of contacts, all you need to do is reach out.
Option 2: The Reactive Approach
This approach is basically using platforms that already exists where journalists are looking for expert sources. All you have to do is respond to any requests that matches what you are talking about. Make sure that you focus on the requests where you know exactly what you are talking about and can demonstrate and suitability. This can be on platforms like Quora or LinkedIn and Twitter.
How and when to use press releases for SEO
Something to note about press releases is that you can get an SEO benefit from them, but it is the message, not the medium that is the important part.
When to use press releases for SEO benefit
It is important that you time your press release just right. Make sure that whatever you are announcing is newsworthy otherwise there really is no point in posting it. Effective announcements through press releases can include; a company update that has significance to your industry, original research about a topic related to your field, and data analysis. If you are a business that processes a lot of data, form interesting narratives and insights, you can publish your finding on your site and then send a press release.
Read: Press Release Templates
Pressfarm’s press release services include writing and distribution of the press releases at affordable rates together with other services to help your campaign.
Making the most of your content
The best way to maximize the content that you’ve written is by syndicating guest posts that you have authored onto your own site. However, you need to make sure to check with that website that published your guest post if it is alright to do so. If you have got approval to repost it, make sure that you add a tag that points back to the original article, because not only is it polite but it informs Google that it is a copy of the original article and it avoids problems of duplicate content.
By syndicating the content, it will provide a lot of benefits including having lots of engaging content on your website. Providing in-depth discussion on a topic will improve site-wide relevance and help with rankings for keywords.
Sometimes when you write a guest post, it might get rejected when you send the final draft. But! Don’t let it get you down. You have already written an article with good content. Put it up on your own website. It can still capture organic traffic and gain backlinks.
Finally, it is alright to be boastful of your efforts if you have managed to win media coverage in high quality and respected publications. It acts as an important trust signal for users.
It is clear that SEO and PR are linked and have a lot of overlap. All you need to do is remember the important elements to be included. Combining your PR and SEO content strategies allows you to plan and execute your own media content.
Creating a combined PR SEO strategy will increase both your visibility and credibility with you target market and improve your website’s organic search rankings.