In today’s digital-first times, finding new ways to put your products and services in front of potential customers can be tough.
Bloggers are cottoning on to guest posts and demanding a fee for placements. Organic reach on social media is at an all-time low, replaced by often prohibitively expensive Facebook Ads. And marketing is getting more expensive. The good news is that it’s still possible to grow your online brand – you just need to look elsewhere.
One of the best ways to build an online presence is to reach out to reputable sources for brand mentions. Appear in reliable, trustworthy news websites such as Forbes and Entrepreneur, and your business instantly gains authority amongst consumers. Below, we have put together some advice on how to use news websites to grow your online brand.
News sites help you grow your online brand
Perhaps the most obvious benefit of using news websites to grow your online brand is that they already have an established audience. Brand recognition is also there – something your startup is looking for. You can spend months paying for advertising, but online public relations is the key to maximizing your digital spend. Rather than paying for single-time clicks and warm leads, you can build your authority and enjoy long-term benefits for your brand. Therefore, aiming for lucrative mentions on news websites relevant to your industry is worth the effort.
Consumers are becoming increasingly savvy. They often scour the web before they buy a product or service from a business. In the B2B world, your online reputation is even more important. You’ll likely never meet clients face-to-face and instead, deal with them virtually.
The biggest benefits of securing brand mentions from online news websites are as follows:
- Builds brand awareness and authority amongst readers of the website
- Helps you give your business a voice and a personality from day one
- It establishes credibility and fortifies your brand’s reputation – you’re an expert
- Offers opportunities to build links back to your website (more on that below)
It’s easier than securing placements on blogs
Another reason why many small businesses and startups chase mentions from news sites is that they’re often much easier to secure than guest posting. Rather than pitching guest posts on random websites, you’re pitching a story to a journalist. And in 2020, journalists are simply too busy to look for their own stories. Instead, they often wait for brands to bring news to them. Rock up in their email box with a press release that offers some insights into your industry. You’ll find it easy to persuade writers to mention your brand in their next article.
How does it work, exactly? Say you sell candy boxes online. You could conduct research on behalf of your business, asking consumers their favorite candy bar. Once you’ve gathered the data, you can present it to journalists for them to use in their upcoming content. As thanks for your time, they’ll mention your business and perhaps even link back to you. The more controversial or shocking your data is, the more likely you are to be picked up by those larger organizations, and perhaps even appear on sites such as Buzzfeed, Yahoo, and MSN.
Another way to grow your online brand is to target local or micro news organizations. You could spread the word about a recent hire, supporting the local economy. Or you could pitch your business as an innovator in your niche and be interviewed by a specialist publication.
There are search engine optimization benefits
As we’ve already touched upon, appearing on news websites is a good way to boost your own website’s search engine optimization.
Simply put, the more authoritative websites that link back to your website, the more likely Google is to see you as a major player, and rank your website accordingly. See it like this: every time someone mentions your brand or links to your website, you’re receiving a “vote” that your website is trustworthy. Google and other search engines use specialist algorithms to rank websites based on their trustworthiness, and so the more mentions, the more organic traffic your website will ultimately receive.
Google’s own Webmaster Trends Analyst Gary Illyes said in 2017 that “If you publish high-quality content that is highly cited on the internet — and I’m not talking about just links, but also mentions on social networks and people talking about your branding, crap like that — then you are doing great.” Even the art of securing those brand mentions is enough to climb the ranks on search engines and appear ahead of your competitors. So start hustling!
Their wide-reaching audience will grow your online brand
Finally, another reason to publish on news sites to grow your online brand is to benefit from the news websites’ wide-reaching audiences. The Huffington Post, for example, attracts an eye-watering 3 million unique visitors per month. Of course, simply being mentioned on the Huffington Post won’t immediately mean three million people know about you, but a good proportion will if your story is prominently featured. And so the more times you’re mentioned on high-traffic, high-quality websites, the bigger and more reputable your brand will become.
There’s an additional benefit to publishing on news websites: once you’ve received a brand mention, you can feature it on your own website as we do at Biz Online Marketing. Our team has been featured in Entrepreneur, Daily Press, NASDAQ, and Forbes amongst others, and that demonstrates to our clientele that we’re trustworthy and a respected name in our niche.
The truth is that publishing your content on high-quality news websites can be hard work, and without the right contacts and persistence, you won’t get far. The good news is that the team at Biz Online Marketing can help you; get in touch to ask about our online PR service.
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