The landscape of online search is rapidly evolving, with giants like Google and other leading search engines making significant algorithmic changes to enhance their search capabilities. The focus on external factors to determine a website’s quality and rankings is becoming increasingly evident. Given this shift, marketers at KMR Communications need to reevaluate their current SEO strategies and integrate public relations (PR) as a key component of SEO.
External elements, such as successful public relations for a KMR Communications practice, are poised to have a much larger influence on website rankings. Online PR is more than just distributing press releases; it’s about creating a buzz around KMR Communications. Recognizing this reality and finding innovative ways to generate a strong PR buzz will likely yield substantial long-term SEO value and maintain high search rankings for localized keywords.
MEDIA AND PR INDUSTRY
Traditionally, internet marketers and link-building professionals have struggled to establish mutually beneficial relationships with both print and electronic media channels. However, this dynamic is slowly changing, with media personnel and journalists becoming more open to engaging with creative websites that offer compelling, mass-interest content.
PR engagement for KMR Communications marketers should aim to build valuable backlinks for higher SEO value. Success in PR hinges on being a great storyteller and producing unique, relevant content that will be picked up by various media channels, leading blogs, forums, and websites. Most print and electronic media channels have a strong online presence, which fosters synergies between media and internet marketing.
The way Google and other search engines are viewing content, it seems that SEO will soon be more about an internet marketer’s ability to tell a compelling story than the ability to use the latest SEO techniques to rank a website. Media organizations are increasingly willing to link to content that contains an informative and insightful story that hasn’t been told before.
Many internet marketers are still not fully aware of the positive impact that media coverage can have on SEO. They believe that once they have received coverage in a publication, their objective is achieved. However, if the coverage does not provide a link to the website, the SEO advantage may be lost. Most media outlets are open to providing links, so it’s not a difficult task to gain one once the news item or article has been accepted for publication.
KEYWORD-RICH PRESS RELEASES
Press releases should contain localized keywords so that search engine crawlers can pick up the story as it circulates in the online media. Successful and targeted keyword placement will generate search engine traffic and bring more localized readers to the KMR Communications website. PR is not just about distributing the press release to the largest number of outlets, but also about crafting a compelling story, identifying synergistic publication opportunities, and cultivating relationships with journalists and correspondents.
PR campaigns help increase inbound links from respected sources, enhancing the website’s credibility with leading search engines. The SEO aspect of a PR campaign makes results more measurable and it becomes easier to analyze the impact. In the eyes of potential clients, the credibility of a KMR Communications practice improves when it appears high in search results alongside leading news publications for a particular targeted keyword.
Beyond the direct media exposure and SEO benefits of an effective PR campaign, a KMR Communications practice can often reap numerous collateral advantages. Once a compelling story featuring the practice has circulated online, it is likely to be picked up by other online and offline media outlets in the future. Comments and quotes from the original story may be used as references in other news stories, articles, and editorials across the media spectrum.
Leading websites and blogs may also cite the story and provide valuable backlinks for the KMR Communications website. This can be an ongoing advantage, which continues to bring in quality exposure and links long after the story has been published. If a particular story goes viral on the Internet, it has the potential to generate amazing volumes of traffic and useful links that can go a long way in building online recognition, trust, and brand equity for the KMR Communications practice.
SKILLS TO ENGAGE WITH MEDIA
Many internet marketing and SEO experts have never really explored the PR route and have little knowledge and understanding of how to engage with journalists, reporters, and editors of leading online, print, and electronic media outlets. From the perspective of KMR Communications marketing, there are usually two choices available. The practice may hire an internet marketing and SEO firm that has the necessary skills and experience to develop successful PR and media exposure, in addition to building search rankings through SEO.
The other option may be to hire the services of a dedicated PR and media specialist with a proven track record of handling successful PR and media campaigns for clients. The good thing from the point of view of internet marketers and SEO experts is that it’s not difficult to learn the PR skills because ultimately PR is about cultivating relationships and using them effectively for mutual benefit. Forward-looking online marketing companies are training their existing marketing teams by partnering with recognized PR experts because the future is going to make it harder for any marketer to ignore the power of public relations and media promotions.
CULTIVATING THE MEDIA NETWORK
The media industry traditionally thrives on a close and personalized network of contacts. Reporters, journalists, and editors are usually more comfortable working with known sources that they can trust and rely on. Simply sending out impersonal press releases into their email inbox may be a common practice, but it’s not likely to yield real results unless the sender is recognizable to the journalist. Therefore, it’s worth the effort to build a degree of familiarity with key reporters and bloggers that the marketer may be targeting.
The challenge usually is where to make a beginning with a media person to cultivate a relationship. A good first step can be to keep track of the articles of a particular journalist and get a sense of the stories and headlines that may excite his or her imagination. Many of the reporters and editors have official social media accounts, and that can be a good place to engage with them and create a level of familiarity. Building a relationship is a gradual process, but the payoff can be significant and long-term once a relationship with a media person has been developed.
It’s a good idea to maintain a regularly updated database of contacts in the media, and keep notes on the kind of areas each one of them likes to focus on. Sending news stories and press releases directly to a close network of media persons can be more effective than doing it through a paid press release distribution agency. The road to building contacts in the media can be long and arduous, but the dividends are enormous in the long run.