As we are all familiar, PR or Public Relations is the umbrella term given to the set of activities that are conducted by an organization to promote and protect its image, and that of its products and services in order to create and maintain a favorable impression in the minds of not just its customers, but the general public at large.
Public relations, as defined by the Public Relations Society of America, is “a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics.” In other words, people in the field of public relations may be said to be storytellers. Public relations professionals get to know a company, understand their brand message and generate positive publicity through their narratives. According to The Princeton Review, “public relations is about cultivating, influencing, engaging and maintaining a relationship with key stakeholders to contribute to the way an organization is perceived.”
Needless to say, storytelling has always been important. The entire concept of public relations is centered around storytelling. Back in the day, when the concept of public relations first came into existence, there was no such thing as ‘traditional PR’ or ‘digital PR’ as we know today. In those days, PR was all about sending out press releases (this was the most common practice) in print and contacting as many journalists as possible. The invention of the internet has opened up several more avenues for conducting public relations activities on a greater scale, and with a far greater economy.
It was only after the turn of the century that public relations began to gain the widespread prominence it holds today. The internet, having created a channel where information could flow freely from organizations to the public, dramatically altered the media landscape to one that was driven by technology and the potential to reach a significantly wider audience in a much shorter time period.
Digital PR, as it is known today, encompasses a wide range of online activities focused on building a positive brand image, creating brand awareness, and maintaining a good reputation among customers, stakeholders, and the public at large. Digital PR, as done by online PR agencies involves harnessing online platforms to build strong and meaningful relationships with journalists, influencers, bloggers, and many others who have an interest in a business and its activities. The objective of this strategy is to earn valuable and beneficial exposure in a variety of media channels such as news sites, blogs, social media, and podcasts, to name a few.
Unlike traditional PR strategies, digital PR campaigns can be effectively targeted to very specific audiences through an assortment of digital channels that, in the long term, ensure a highly favorable brand reputation as well as good search engine optimization.
Digital PR campaigns are capable of bringing better - and more measurable - results in a short span of time. With its core focus being on bringing about enhanced visibility, the possibilities that digital PR offers are virtually limitless. Let us look at some of the various benefits that digital PR can bring you and your organization.
1. Providing a boost to SEO
It is no surprise that digital PR and search optimization are inextricably linked to one another. Search engines place a high value on good quality external links to your website, and it is these links that significantly affect your rankings on search engines like Google. The more high-quality backlinks you gain, the better it is for your SEO. There are highly rated link building and guest posting services like OutreachX & IG Publishing which can help you with your SEO.
2. Greater brand exposure
Nowadays, an increasingly gigantic volume of business is conducted via the internet. With the internet being the default medium for people seeking information as well as to conduct business, having a strong digital presence will help to make more and more people aware of your brand.
3. A business goal-driven PR strategy
Digital PR techniques help to formulate an overall public relations strategy that is focused on directing resources towards channels that your target audiences use the most. This helps you align your digital PR strategy with your business goals.
4. High-value targeted content
Digital PR focuses on delivering specifically targeted high-quality content that provides value to their respective audiences. Such content may be in the form of articles, white papers, infographics, slides and data studies which are highly informative.
5. Increase in referral traffic
Referral traffic refers to the traffic that is directed to your website indirectly through online media coverage, such as through links in articles, social media shares, social bookmarking, etc. Digital PR helps to earn you a greater number of mentions on different media platforms, which in turn helps to feed more traffic to your website.
6. Wider digital footprint
The more the number of people searching for your brand on a search engine, the greater the digital footprint you have. The greater the engagement you enjoy on social media through likes, comments, shares, the more your digital footprint grows. A digital PR campaign helps with both your search engine performance as well as your social media performance.
7. Better overall brand image
A comprehensive digital PR strategy that combines an optimal combination of media channels and social platforms will lead to an overall improvement in your brand image, giving your company the respect and recognition it deserves. A positive reputation increases your brand’s credibility and helps to establish you as a leader in your niche.
These are just some of the numerous advantages that an integrated digital PR strategy can bring to you and your brand. An article on State of Digital talks about how you can create your own digital PR strategy that takes into account the specific dynamics, constraints, market position, and customer base of your business. Below are some of the most commonly used digital PR techniques:
- Gaining media mentions by offering expert opinions and insights on a specific relevant topic
- Creating strong and meaningful relationships with influencers, bloggers and micro-influencers
- Guest appearances on interviews, podcasts etc.
- Getting guest articles published on reputed news sites or blogs
- Harnessing social media to deliver targeted brand messages
A combination of all or any of the above techniques, depending on your requirements and target audience, can help you reap rich rewards. In today’s hypercompetitive business world, having the edge over the competition is what will truly make your brand message stand out amid all the media noise. We recommend that you trust the experts for the best results. Consult the digital PR professionals to help you craft your perfect digital PR strategy. There is no doubt that digital is indeed the way forward, and a professional digital public relations agency will help ensure that you put your best foot forward to enable you to broaden your digital footprint!
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Robb Fahrion is a Co-Founder and Partner of Flying V Group. He is passionate about helping businesses grow using the power of the internet. Robb graduated from Chapman University in Orange, CA and currently resides in Costa Mesa, CA. Robb enjoys writing about digital marketing, helping his clients turn their dreams into reality, and he is a HUGE Mike Trout fan.