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A strong online presence has become a necessity for businesses to reach new audiences and engage existing customers.

Therefore, the methods businesses use to promote themselves have been increasingly focused on digital channels and revised to suit the way people search online rather than the traditional offline sources we would typically outreach to.

Traditional PR has been and will continue to be a successful method of promotion for many marketers and agencies worldwide. The evolution of digital PR has simply developed how we outreach and build our brand online by incorporating elements of SEO.

Introduction to SEO and PR

SEO, or search engine optimisation, is the practice of improving a website’s rankings in the search results by helping to improve the perceived authority of the website and seek relevant placements and promotion across the web. In line with this are many factors that can affect your authority but arguably the most important component to a higher ranking is the quality of your content and the distribution of it to highly authoritative websites. When Google sees your great quality content being shared by people/groups of authority in your industry, its perception of your business is improved.

 

That said, it is growing increasingly more difficult to compete online; with over 117 million active websites who all have an aim to make the most money and be the strongest brand, you need a tactic to make your site perform above the rest.

 

Digital PR is an evolved version of traditional PR which delivers a major SEO benefit. It is similar to traditional PR because you are still pitching a newsworthy story to an editor or reporter, however it’s the end result that is considerably different. Where traditional PR success would be a newspaper article or TV appearance, digital PR success is in being featured on authoritative websites and having those sites mention your brand or, ideally, link to your website.
In this way, it offers longevity because the online feature/article will stay live potentially forever, and the ability to measure the success of the PR campaign by monitoring the number of times you are featured around the web, how much traffic that feature sends to your website and, if appropriate, whether those website visitors went on to buy from you.
Having a press release published on a dependable domain is also a great accolade for you/your business and shares the same benefits of traditional PR or helping to build brand awareness and credibility too..

The benefits of digital PR for SEO

For any business wanting to achieve high brand visibility in their industry and ultimately generate relevant traffic and sales in a digital age where more than 3.17 billion people in the world have access to the Internet, choosing a channel with SEO benefits could make you more likely to progress online further than conventional methods such as traditional PR. These benefits include:

Increased visibility resulting in improved reputation

If you have an article published in a local newspaper, a few thousand may read it however more than half of Britons now access their news online therefore if your press release is published on the online version of your local news, there’s a greater opportunity for people to see it, especially if it a national piece of content. If more people see your article, you become reputable as a brand resulting in users more likely to convert if they have seen your content elsewhere and known in your industry.

Longevity

Unlike a newspaper that can be thrown away or a TV appearance that’s over and forgotten about before you know it, an online article is available for readers to go back to if they wanted to revisit your content and is easily accessible on various devices.

Measureable

You can easily see if an online press release has improved your monthly traffic or conversion rate by using tools such as Analytics to review data from channels across the Internet. However if the website your article was featured on didn’t link back to your website, there isn’t a way to track if your article had an impact on your traffic. It isn’t the end of the world if there isn’t a link back to your site because it’s still promoting your business and it is still keyword-searchable for users searching your brand. You can still measure your PR success to some extent by monitoring your overall traffic once the article has been published.

Modernised

These days, people are relying on technology to keep them updated, they use mobile devices when they’re away from their home or computer and they visit far more websites than your typical local news publication.

Further opportunities

There aren’t enough offline newspapers and magazines to keep up with the world’s growing interests and people don’t typically rely on their local news publication for their ultimate source of worldwide news. There are so many websites catered to niche industries such as computing or the restaurant industry that there are far more opportunities to pitch your content online.

Header image: Flickr 

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Georgia Goodman is the digital marketing assistant of high-growth digital marketing agency Impression. Georgia specialises in SEO and content marketing as well as assisting with account management and PPC. Impression is a creative digital marketing agency which delivers digital marketing services to a range of clients across the UK. Their services include website design and development, search engine optimisation, paid media advertising, digital PR, content marketing and ecommerce. Find out more at www.impression.co.uk.

This article was brought to you by the Openr team – who source great experts and writers in the marketing space to contribute to the Marketing Collective on the Openr blog.

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