What Is Digital PR, And How Do I Use It For SEO?
If you’re one of those who think SEO and PR can’t work together, this digital PR strategy guide is for you.
Most brands invest in expensive PR campaigns without thinking about them from an SEO perspective. That’s a big mistake.
With digital PR, you can get the best of both worlds by creating PR campaigns that drive your SEO strategy as well.
In this article, I’ll explain how digital PR works and how you can use it to increase brand awareness and boost SEO.
Let’s dive in.
What Is Digital PR And How Is It Different From Traditional PR
Digital PR is about building brand awareness by combining traditional PR tactics such as press releases, sponsored content, paid brand mentions, etc., with content marketing, SEO, and influencer outreach.
Unlike traditional PR, digital PR helps you get brand mentions in a way that directly benefits your site’s search authority and rankings. It considers domain authority, backlink profile, relevance, quality, and other key SEO metrics when evaluating sites for PR campaigns.
This might seem like a small difference, but it has a considerable impact on the long-term results of your digital PR campaigns.
Let me explain.
A traditional PR campaign makes an immediate impact when it goes live. But its results are not sustainable. In comparison, a digital PR campaign has a long-term effect and keeps benefiting your SEO profile for years.
5 Ways To Use Digital PR For SEO Purposes
To understand how digital PR works, let’s discuss the different ways you can use SEO in your PR campaigns.
1. Think About Your Press Release From An SEO Perspective
Press releases are a critical part of any PR campaign. If you write a great press release, you can attract journalists and media companies to cover your brand in their publications.
However, with digital PR, you can provide significantly more exposure to your press releases and increase your chances of getting found by your target audience.
How? By optimizing for the right brand keywords.
Let me explain.
The press releases published on public sites like PRWeb, PRNewswire, and others, are indexed by Google Search. So, if you optimize your press releases for the right target keywords, your audience and prospects will find them when searching for your brand.
This would strengthen your credibility and provide an additional touchpoint for your search engine traffic to learn about your brand.
For example, when you search for Finish startup Logmore, along with “qr” which is an essential keyword describing their service, their funding press release is among the top search results on Google Search.
How do you optimize a press release for the SERPs? By identifying the right keywords and using on-page SEO techniques to optimize its body content.
Most importantly, use your brand name and the keywords you want to rank for in the press release title. Plus, use your target keywords throughout the content body. Also, don’t forget to format your press release for higher readability by using short paragraphs and breaking it down with sub-headings and bullet points.
Since PR websites have high search authority, optimized press releases have a great chance of ranking for their target keywords.
2. Target Relevant High-Ranking Content For Link Building
Getting backlinks and brand mentions from other established websites is among the most popular PR tactics.
However, many PR agencies and SaaS companies miss a huge brand awareness and SEO opportunity when targeting sites for link building.
They’re content with getting backlinks from any page of a relevant website—big mistake.
You can easily 10x the effectiveness of your link-building and brand awareness campaigns by specifically targeting the pages already ranking in the top search results for your target keyword.
That way, your brand name will be mentioned in a page that’s already among the top ten search results for your target keyword. So this would not only give you a high-authority backlink. It would also increase your chances of getting noticed by your target audience.
For example, say you’re looking for brand mention or backlinks to your email marketing product. Consider targeting one of the top pages already ranking for a relevant email marketing keyword.
Secondly, securing a backlink or brand mention on a top-ranking page continues to pay off for years. How?
When bloggers and content creators look for external sources to link in their article, they rarely go beyond page one on Google. This means the top-ranking pages continue to grow in authority by getting more backlinks organically.
Getting placements in such articles is hard, of course, which is why we offer it as a service to SaaS companies.
3. Evaluate Website Authority For Digital PR Campaigns
Another common tactic when doing PR for startups is to get as many brand mentions as possible on different websites. There’s nothing wrong with this tactic.
However, getting brand mentions on high-authority sites is much harder than getting a regular backlink to your site.
When you limit your focus to only getting brand mentions, you lose out on high-authority link-building opportunities available in your niche.
A better approach is to identify the top domain authority sites that are relevant to your business. Then create link-worthy content such as:
- Original research
- Long-form content
- Case studies
- Any other valuable content that other sites can reference in their content
Then, reach out to your target sites. Show them how adding a link to your resource will make their content more credible.
For instance, say you’ve published a survey result on your site. Other sites can reference your findings to back their arguments.
See the example below. Sisense, a data analytics software, was mentioned in Crunchbase’s article after providing them with data analyzing funding patterns.
Even if they don’t mention your brand and simply link back to your survey, you’ll still get valuable PR because of the site’s high authority.
You can, however, suggest a relevant anchor text for your backlink so that your site gets the maximum benefit from the backlink.
This approach is more scalable and often helps you kill two birds with a stone, nailing digital PR and SEO at the same time. Many sites will mention your brand and link to your content because they would need to reference your resource.
4. Optimize Link Worthy Resources On Your Site
Another common PR mistake by SaaS companies is to look for homepage backlinks all the time. Scalable link-building and PR can only be done when your site has link-worthy content.
Homepage links are crucial for SEO, but to get links and brand mentions regularly, you must create high-quality blog content that you can use for link-building campaigns.
Buffer’s content marketing strategy is a great example. It has thousands of links to different articles and resources on its blog. Such as this one.
You can use such content resources in your guest posts to easily secure editorial backlinks on high authority sites, and once again get digital PR and SEO benefits at the same time.
In comparison, if you insert homepage backlinks in your articles, most editors would remove them unless there’s a solid reason for keeping them.
5. Leverage Media Connections For Placements
No PR strategy can succeed without investing in influencer and media relationships. This is why expanding your influencer network and media connections are among the most critical parts of a digital PR strategy.
How do you build connections that you can leverage when you need coverage?
By identifying the relevant media outlets, influencers, journalists, and content creators and connecting with them through social media. Next, you must offer them free value in the form of content, connections, or anything else that might benefit them. It can even be as simple as sharing their content on your social media profiles.
When you invest in building these relationships, you can leverage them when you need brand coverage or sponsored stories in your preferred publications.
However, media relationship building is a long-term game. That’s why many companies leverage the connections of established inbound marketing and advertising firms instead of building their own connections from scratch.
At InboundJunction, we have a vast network of influencers and content creators connected with various top publications where we regularly feature our clients.
If you’re interested in leveraging our network, feel free to contact us.