September 16th, 2021

The Importance of Digital PR in Your Marketing and Communications Strategy

In the last decade, digital PR emerged as a new concept that has grown to become an integral part of marketing strategies worldwide for both brands and agencies.

In this article we discuss:

 

  1. What is Digital PR?
  2. How Does Digital PR Differ from Traditional PR?
  3. Digital PR Benefits
  4. Digital PR & Backlinks
  5. Newsjacking & Your PR Strategy

 

What is Digital PR?

 

Digital PR is a strategy employed to increase awareness, mentions and visibility. It aims to secure regular high-quality backlinks on websites with recognised authority around the web, and brings a multitude of SEO benefits.

For example, authoritative sites (not exhaustive) for health news include Australian Doctor, Health Times, BioPharmaDispatch, Medical Republic and Pharma in Focus. When pitching a story to these types of outlets, securing a backlink to improve your SEO performance is the primary objective.

To achieve this, you must ensure your online-focused press releases are optimised with links back to a website. Having a piece published with a website link is challenging, so relationship building with journalists is critical, and the content must be high quality.

 

How Does Digital PR Differ From Traditional PR?

 

Digital PR shares many of the same objectives and goals as its traditional counterpart. Both strategies aim to secure online coverage. However, traditional PR encompasses print (newspapers & magazines) and radio which have no SEO benefits. Conversely, digital PR’s net expands further than this to include relevant websites, social media, and blogs.

 

Digital PR Benefits

 

Digital PR has an extensive range of benefits for a brand both onsite and offsite. A primary benefit is the ability to expand online presence, particularly through syndication. This refers to when a piece of content is shared on a website, and third-party websites then re-publish it to their own site. It is a symbiotic relationship because the third-party website gets useful and suitable content for free, while the content owner enjoys an expansion of their online presence in return.

Not only does it strive to have offsite benefits such as expanding brand online presence, but also onsite benefits by proving to search engines such as Google and Yahoo that you have a legitimate website with authoritative backlinks leading back to it from around the web.

 

Digital PR & Backlinks

 

Securing online media coverage with a backlink  has several benefits. Firstly, it will attract new website visitors, by providing a direct pathway to your website that is available to the reader at the click of a button. The increased website traffic can build awareness, sales and conversions. The link can then be used to analyse and track user origin.

There are two kinds of backlinks you can secure on third-party websites: follow and a no-follow backlinks. A follow backlink creates an online link between your website and the third-party website, granting your site increased authority. A no-follow backlink does little for improving site authority. It is always at the discretion of the third-party website whether they make your backlink follow or no-follow, and the only negative here is that this is out of your control.

 

Newsjacking & Your PR Strategy

 

Newsjacking is an effective tactic to achieve your digital PR objectives. It involves tracking sector-related online news and identifying opportunities where your spokesperson can provide expert comment.

Once the right story has been identified, the author is contacted with the aim of inserting a comment or insight with a backlink into the existing story, driving traffic back to your website and further enhancing SEO authority.

It is important not to chase stories that aren’t sufficiently relevant to your area of expertise. Content is king in this case and adding value to the existing piece is the aim, so pick the right story and avoid spamming or you’ll risk burning any good will you’ve established with a journalist.

 

To discuss how we can employ digital PR strategies for your brand or organisation today, get in touch here.

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