John Lincoln

5 Ways to Use PR & SEO Together to Boost Your Ranking

Digital PR & SEOThe world of digital marketing is constantly evolving and, sometimes, it’s hard to keep up with the latest trends and topics.

What some digital marketers may not realize, though, is that not everything needs to be constantly recreated. There is a lot to be learned from traditional outreach practices, like PR, that have been helping brands for decades.

Consider taking it a step further and pairing those lessons with newer opportunities and strategies that are popping up in the digital world.

Let’s talk about how to pair your digital PR and SEO strategies.

What is PR?

PR, or Public Relations, is the practice of maintaining a positive public image for a brand or organization. PR reps often manage the flow of information around a brand by deliberately boosting positive news and pulling attention away from anything that would shine a negative light on the brand.

Whereas traditional PR focuses a lot on building up a brand in a positive light to the public, digital PR focuses are building your site’s authority in the digital space.

Digital PR comprises activities such as:

  • Quality link building
  • Podcast interviews
  • Launching sponsored posts
  • Guest posting on other companies or brand sites

Any content that you produce that will show your brand authentically, in partnership with another well-respected brand, will boost your content and help you form a strong brand identity.

When you think about it, PR was the first form of SEO. The work of a public relations representative has always been to boost–or optimize–the image of the brand in the eyes of the public.

A positive brand image will help your bottom line. When a brand is viewed more favorably by the public, those people are more likely to tell their friends and family about the brand.

How Do PR & SEO Work Together?

PR and SEO are a natural match. While they consist of different tasks and functions, the two activities have the same general goals:

  • Build brand awareness
  • Drive traffic to the brand
  • Increase the brand’s authority in its target market

SEO is the overarching umbrella that covers a whole range of strategies. Digital PR consists of the actual tasks that you can work into your overall outreach strategy. It will help improve your brand’s image while also boosting your SEO.

The coolest thing about PR is that it creates so many opportunities for you to get creative in your brand outreach.

When you marry digital PR and SEO, you’ll see a huge increase in organic traffic.

Digital PR & SEO Strategies to Try For Your Brand

Think of SEO as your body and digital PR as the healthy food you feed yourself to improve the way your body functions. Some strategies include:

Backlink Building

Quality PR work will help you obtain one of the most valuable aspects of SEO: quality link building.

When you’re consistently putting out content in the form of press releases and other publications, people will naturally link back to your site. These natural links are much more valuable and effective for SEO than any spammy link builder or other black hat SEO techniques.

Google also really loves natural backlinks. When other people place their trust in your site, it shows the search engine that you are a trustworthy source that can be viewed as an expert. This makes the search engine feel more comfortable in promoting your content.

Site Outreach

Content is being churned out in large qualities every single day. Backlinks are super important, not only to build your authority but for search engines to know which sites are producing quality content.

The backlinks that come from quality digital PR also help to improve factors such as your spam score, trust flow, overall traffic, and citation flow.

You can check where your site falls in these categories through online tools like Moz. You can also use Moz tools to see how other sites measure up in these categories.

For example, if you are receiving a lot of backlinks from a site with a high spam score of 20% or more, you will want to do your best to stay away from those sites. Increase your digital PR to gain backlinks from more quality sites.

This is super important for digital PR and SEO. If your site gets too many backlinks from spammy sites, search engines will view your site as spam, too. Nothing tanks your SERP ranking and gets you hit with Google penalties faster than being marked as spam.

Thought Leadership

When we spend so much time wrapped up in our own content, it’s easy to forget that what we know isn’t necessarily common knowledge.

When we partner with other brands in different, but complementary industries, it helps to educate a different audience. It also establishes our brand as an expert.

Thought leadership is the perfect marriage of digital PR and SEO because we are educating the public while also building faith in our brand. 

Media Outreach

If you’ve been in digital marketing for a while now, you know that influencer marketing has become a huge staple.

Brands are shifting away from traditional marketing and shifting closer to influencer marketing. When a variety of different voices are promoting your brand, consumers seem to put more stock in your authenticity and expertise. 

Let your PR team handle the outreach to major media outlets while your social media or content marketing team handles influencer and blogger marketing.

Both major media outlets and influencers can offer your brand a lot in terms of marketing. But it’s important to know how to handle relationships for digital PR and SEO.

Amplifying Your Brand’s Content

Digital PR does a great job of amplifying your brand’s content through a variety of sources.

This exposes the consumer to your brand multiple times, but in a way that doesn’t seem inauthentic or spammy. 

A good PR representative will know how to take content that has already been produced by your brand and repurpose it. It’s the same general content but will now be shared in a new way. 

When you share repurposed content, your audience sees it multiple times, without feeling as though they’ve seen it multiple times. This keeps your brand’s name fresh in the minds of your consumers.

It’s also a great way to marry digital PR and SEO. Repurposed content appears to search engine robots as new content. This new content will then be re-indexed, giving algorithms more content from your brand to promote.

FAQs About PR & SEO

1. Are digital PR and SEO the same thing?

Nope. While very complementary to each other, digital PR and SEO are two different concepts.

Think of SEO as a large umbrella strategy. Digital PR is one leg of activities under that strategy. 

2. Is it important to have your PR and SEO teams work together closely?

Yes! Even though they are not the same thing, they work better when they work together. Your digital PR team will help to boost the content that your content marketing team is creating for SEO purposes.

3. What is the most important thing that digital PR produces?

Digital PR is great for building quality backlinks for your brand. SEO robots take your brand and your content more seriously when other brands and companies are linking to it.

After all, you can say you’re the greatest in your field a million times over, but it doesn’t mean as much as someone else saying it. 

With digital PR, other brands will naturally link back to your site. Natural links are more valuable than any spammy backlink builder.

4. Is digital PR the only thing I need to focus on when it comes to a quality SEO strategy?

Nope! While digital PR can create valuable connections, it isn’t enough to drive your SEO strategy alone.

Use it with SEO tasks like keyword research, meta descriptions, content updates, and alt image tags.

5. Will digital PR and SEO be expensive for my brand?

This really depends on how much work you’re putting into your PR and SEO teams.

If you want to have robust PR and SEO teams, then yes, it will be an expensive thing to take on. However, as long as you’re putting out quality work and content, the expense will pay off in the long run. 

6. Do I have to follow a set formula for my digital PR or is there room to be creative?

The coolest thing about digital PR is that it gives you so much room to get creative and have fun!

Try many fun and exciting things to help boost your SEO, build your brand identity, and increase your brand awareness. With digital PR, you can try things like guest posting, podcast interviews, and sponsored posts. Keep trying until you find strategies you enjoy and benefit from.

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About the Author

John Lincoln is CEO of Ignite Visibility, one of the top digital marketing agencies in the nation. Ignite Visibility is a 4x  Inc. 5,000 company. Ignite Visibility offers a unique digital marketing program tied directly to ROI with a focus on using SEO, social media, paid media, CRO, email, Amazon and PR to achieve results. Outside of Ignite Visibility, Lincoln is a frequent speaker and author of the books “Digital Influencer” and “The Forecaster Method.” Lincoln is consistently named one of the top digital marketers in the industry and was the recipient of the coveted Search Engine Land “Search Marketer of The Year” award. Lincoln has taught digital marketing and Web Analytics at the University of California San Diego since 2010, has been named as one of San Diego’s most admired CEO’s and a top business leader under 40. Lincoln has also made “SEO: The Movie” and “Social Media Marketing: The Movie.” His business mission is to help others through digital marketing.

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