When working together, SEO and PR are the dream team. It leads to high quality links, a stronger online presence, and a unified brand strategy. However, this is difficult to achieve. SEO and PR have a difficult time working effectively together. They work side-by-side, but not with one another, thus losing on a valuable opportunity to communicate with the user.
Often, PR focuses on mentions from editorial sources and influencers within the industry. Their goal can focus on brand affinity, promotion of a new product/line, or positive sentiment, such as a rave review for a new movie. On the other hand, most SEOs focus on creating content for the sake of ranking, leading to an extremely saturated space with just “OK” content.
Rather than getting mentions and creating content for the sake of PR placements and rankings, these tactics should be serving a greater purpose for both the brand and user. Creating a certain piece of content and achieving a placement on a relevant site helps tell your brand story while assisting the user with more valuable information.
So, how can we solve this disconnect?
It’s simple – combine the efforts of your SEO & PR teams to create engaging content that provides useful information for the user while telling your brand story.
It all begins with research. A wide variety of information is available for you.
Using tools such as Google AdWords Keyword Planner, you can research various queries that people are already searching for. Similarly, you can use the site search data within Google Analytics to see if users are trying to find a specific piece of content on your own site.
From here, plug this data into BuzzSumo or a similar tool to see what pieces of content are already trending for these topics:
Likewise, PR agents can share their industry insights. What are journalists writing about? What types of quotes or information are they requesting about this brand?
Ultimately, journalists are performing the same task – providing useful content for the user – so any insights from them can be extremely useful.
Develop The Content
Both teams must jointly decide on a topic that answers a consumer’s question. Once a topic is decided upon, various content pieces can be developed to address it. Whether it’s a guide, infographic, blog post series or new product filter, this content piece should address the consumer query in a clean, yet informative way.
Don’t rush this process. You don’t want to be creating more “OK” content that saturates the online field. To help with this, rely on UX experts as well as your SEO and PR teams. They are going to assist with seeding this content, so you want to make sure they believe in it as much as you do.
The Art of Manliness does an excellent job developing content that’s useful for both SEO and PR. For example, they created a video, “How to Trim a Beard”, that answered any beard trimming questions for their target demo (fulfilling a need).
Furthermore, this content was easily incorporated into off-site articles by industry bloggers.
Seed The Content
Before even publishing the content, you need to create a seeding plan for how you plan on publishing, amplifying and pushing this content to your consumers. See below for an example seeding plan.
- Publish the content
- Share content on relevant social channels (Facebook and Pinterest)
- Promote post with small budget ($100)
- Incorporate content into timely email blast
- Reach out to various related journalist, blogger and sites sharing the content with them.
- SEO outreach list
- PR outreach list
The digital PR team has two options for how to seed the desired topic. They can ask journalists to incorporate the content into an existing article or pitch a similar idea for a completely new off-site content piece. Either way, consumers will still be able to find the information they need and associate your brand with providing this information.
Using this approach to creating user-centric content has many benefits. It:
- Focuses SEO & PR goals on the user, rather than quantitative metrics.
- Leads to better quality content that resonates with the consumer.
- Increases the effectiveness of SEO & PR working together.
Are you using SEO and PR to create engaging, consumer-centric content?