Saturday, 7 April 2012

SEO, Social Media, Email Marketing and the Evolution of PR

The art of the press release was once a simple business. Your PR team would write an engaging release,distribute it to a hopefully receptive audience and then send you the clippings along with a breakdown of the perceived value of the news generated (usually calculated by comparing the column inches of the coverage won with the individual publication’s advertising rate card and then multiplying by a (movable) factor of X).
But then the Internet came along and disrupted everything.
Blogging, social media and user generated content has torn up the old media PR rulebook. How do you put a value on a mention on a social network, website forum or personal blog where there is often no rate card to refer to?
While this may have sent old school PR firms reeling, technologies offered by companies such as Vocus.com(who also operate the iContactPR Web and HARO online services) have empowered agencies and clients alike to (probably for the first time) truly understand the value of their PR efforts. Understanding real business metrics such as ROI, reach, customer sentiment and your influence across the competitive landscape will not only help you guide your investment in PR but will also help you turn it from a “nice to have” activity to a powerful, legitimate driver of business.
5 Reasons Why PR Has Moved Beyond Clippings
  1. SEO: A well written release, distributed via a wide range of quality news sites will generate a significant number of links back to your site. The major search engines, including Google, factor both the number and quality of links referring to a site in their algorithm when building Search Engine Results Pages (SERPS). This means that an article doesn’t even have to be read to have a positive impact.
  2. News Alerts: Press Releases from services like PR Web are included alongside more traditional news outlets on online news services like Google News. This means not only will your Press Release stand a great chance of being found by keyword news searches but also be sent to potential clients’ email inboxes via online news alert services.
  3. Landing Page Experience: While organic search can at times be an inexact science (governed by the ever changing rules of the search engines) and putting your landing page experience at the mercy of Google, etc., a Press Release can steer readers to a bespoke landing page experience which can maximise opportunities for conversion including direct sales, email marketing subscription and social media engagement.
  4. Social Media Fuel: A socially enabled press release has the potential to be distributed widely via an army of social media fans and followers. Add this to the number of tweets and Facebook likes, etc. your news receives via the wide range of news and content-led sites that distribute your press release and your reach will be dramatically increased.
  5. Metrics: Technology has removed the guesswork out of calculating the true value of your PR campaigns. This enables you to make strategic decisions about the direction of your PR activity and test, monitor and improve quickly and easily.
Learn how technology can help your PR strategy evolve by requesting a demo of the Vocus Public Relations suite.

photo: NS Newsflash

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