For both established and early-years businesses, online PR is essential. Not only does it help you manage your brand’s reputation, but it’s a way to earn money. The best part? Most businesses don’t understand the real value of public relations. Indeed, many entrepreneurs put their focus on high and immediate-return marketing tasks. Think social media management and PPC advertising. Although these are also vital to a successful marketing strategy, it’s often the “slow burners” that can offer more value. They take time to implement, but once you get there, you’ll benefit from increased brand awareness and higher Google rankings.
Below, we’ve rounded up just some of the reasons why you need to invest in online PR.
Online PR helps you secure links
Perhaps the most obvious benefit to online PR is that it can help you earn links. When you work with an established online PR company, top-tier websites will link back to you. This will signal to Google that you’re an authority in your niche and, over time, you’ll start to rank for dozens of relevant search terms. A construction firm might rank for “Melbourne construction company”, for example, and eventually climb to the top spot, which attracts 33% of all traffic.
Opt for data-driven campaigns or stories that really speak to consumers. When your online PR puts something together, you’ll easily earn dozens of links. Add in manual outreach and guest blogging, and you’ll find it easy to secure links at breakneck speed. A speed that your competitors won’t be able to catch up with, meaning you’ll outmaneuver them and quickly.
Links are about much more than ranking on Google. They represent authority and drive traffic on their own. Secure a placement on a site like Forbes, and you’ll have 100s of readers click through to your site. Some of those will go on to buy your products/services.
Helps you be omnipresent on the web
Another benefit of online PR is being able to put yourself in front of potential customers. Take the time to get to know your target demographic. Who are they? What do they do? What are the problems they’re currently facing? Where do they hang out when they’re online? It’s a time-consuming exercise, but it’s useful in determining where your PR should be focused.
When you nail this, you’ll find it easier to secure placements and coverage on websites that align with your audience. The job of a good online PR company is to identify those websites and publications that may, on the surface, appear irrelevant to your niche. Allow them to hone in on micro-communities and you’ll soon be performing ahead of rival companies.
Although the main aim of your campaign might be to earn links, brand recognition is clearly in second place. Every time a user sees your company on a website they frequent, you’re increasing your chances of winning over a new customer. Experts say consumers need to be exposed to a brand seven times before remembering it – hence a consistent PR strategy.
Remarketing following online PR
Another digital marketing strategy to consider is remarketing. When your online PR company scores a link on a website, you should add tracking to your website. That way, you’ll know where visitors come from. Spot that you’re getting tonnes of traffic from a Business.com article, and you’ll know that it was successful. You’ll also know that those readers are from a business background. And are therefore more likely to buy your B2B products and services.
You can then add that audience to your remarketing lists. Target them on social networking sites and display networks to keep spreading the message about your business. It won’t work overnight, but in time, you’ll score new leads and clients as a result. Make sure you’re using Google Analytics and remarketing tools like Adroll, SmarterHQ, or Perfect Audience.
Online PR can help spark conversations
The ultimate goal of a PR campaign is to start conversations. Even more so when you’re able to divide opinion. For example – should butter be left in the fridge? Was Brexit a good idea? Should children be taught about terrorism in schools? Though you might not want to associate your brand with those questions, sparking debates and discussions is a good idea.
For example, imagine you run a business that sells high heels. Your online PR company may conduct some research on how many pairs of high heels the average woman owns. You can send a press release to dozens of blogs: “Average woman owns 12 pairs of high heel shoes” and win a backlink and brand mention in the process. Some of these statistical-based pieces go viral and are picked up by major news organizations. You, as the author and source, can join and control the conversation on social media and online, adding your opinion to the mix.
Don’t be controversial for controversy’s sake, but also don’t be afraid of standing out. Think about the way you position your online PR campaign and dare to be bold. It might not always pay off, but if you go viral and put your brand in front of thousands of potential customers, it’s worth the effort. Consult a professional before trying any of these public relations tactics.
Build credibility – and win over high-ticket clients
Why should a consumer choose your brand over a competitor? If you’re operating in a niche where it’s hard to differentiate, reputation and character are key. If you’ve been featured in publications like Forbes, Entrepreneur, and the BBC, you can boost your credibility overnight and drive sales. Such affirmations can get high-ticket clients over the line and encourage them to sign up with you – especially if you can show them case studies or press snippets.
We recommend adding high-profile brand mentions on your website. We’ve done it at Biz Online Marketing to demonstrate our authority and credibility in our niche. Always ask for permission before you do so, and remember that you’ll need to back up those mentions if a client asks for proof. Keep a record of all of your brand mentions, links, and guest blogs.
Although online PR may not be at the top of your list when starting a business, it makes sense to invest in a strategy as soon as you’re able to. Start off in the early days of your venture, and you’ll rise above your competitors in no time at all, building a name for yourself in a competitive market. Reach out to Biz Online Marketing if you’re looking for assistance.
If you want to stay up-to-date on the latest goings-on in the world of online public relations and digital marketing, follow our social media channels on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. You’ll find lots of tips, tricks, and advice on strategically positioning your business – and some words of wisdom on securing the right placements for your content.