As the rules of search engine optimization continue to evolve, one thing is for sure: quality content and quality links that lead to an improved user experience on your site matter more than ever before. This makes it critical for PR and SEO teams to work together for the sake of the brands they serve. Off-page SEO and digital PR strategies are now essentially one and the same – both should prioritize guest blogs, media coverage and links. Not to mention that any talented SEO expert is already conducting and leveraging the same target persona research that PR firms are conducting for their clients. Likewise, PR firms are placing more of an emphasis on links back to client sites as they strive to track the true impact of the placements the placements that they earn. At Fidelitas Development, our SEO and PR teams work closely together for the success of our clients.
Are your PR and SEO efforts working together to improve your results? Here’s how your brand can integrate your PR and SEO Strategies:
Align The Goals of Your PR and SEO Departments
There should be a clear consensus on whom your brand is trying to reach and through what mediums. In cases where multiple agencies are retained, it’s imperative for the client to drive collaborative discussions between agencies so that all parties are in strategic agreement on best practices, not to mention responsibilities. There’s nothing more frustrating than realizing that you’re paying two companies to do the same thing.
By coming to a consensus on goals for the brand, PR and SEO departments can both generate improved results. For example, local SEO efforts can benefit from PR campaigns targeted to local and regional publications. SEO-oriented research into the digital credentials of various outlets can help PR pros focus their efforts on more beneficial channels, too. It’s important to note that unique pitches, a staple for any decent PR strategy, matter for SEO too – Google isn’t going to reward you for publishing duplicate content. This means taking the extra time to help key outlets craft their stories to benefit their audiences as well as the client’s search rankings.
Coordinate Keyword and Messaging Strategies
That means sharing keyword research data before a pitch ever begins and working together to hone the messaging around both the brand message and the SEO strategy. Further, it’s important for press releases to include links to pages with more information on the brand’s website whenever possible. Those links often end up as followed links on media sites, even when the release is rewritten.
Outside of keyword research and messaging strategies, PR pros can also help SEO experts leverage any events or PR stunts to secure more backlinks from the coverage. The SEO team giving key blogger contacts a heads up of the stunt can help maximize the coverage of the event itself. SEO teams should also work with PR teams to optimize links for coverage- that means avoiding internal search links in favor of directory links and making sure that paid sponsorship links are no-follow links in order to avoid search engine penalties.
Make Sure That Your PR and SEO Teams Share Content
Quality content isn’t cheap to produce, no matter whether you’re handling content creation in-house or outsourcing content development to an agency like Fidelitas. So why pay for great content twice when simple collaboration gives both your SEO and PR teams more resources to work with? Any content that’s strong for SEO should be strong on the PR side as well, leading to more bang for your marketing budget’s buck.
It starts with sharing a content calendar. SEO and PR teams need to be on the same page from the start, along with clearly defined roles for each department in the content generation process. Fidelitas manages this process with clients through Google Sheets. Infographics and videos are some of the best content to share. Infographics can be distributed with permission to reprint in return for a link, and videos can be optimized within YouTube- plus videos posted directly to Facebook can triple your brand’s organic reach on the social platform. This creates a win-win-win for both the PR and SEO teams as well as the brand itself.
Establish Shared Contact Databases
A lack of communication between SEO and PR specialist will lead to overlapping engagements with key media members and bloggers- leading to a poor reflection of the brand and potentially turning off media members from covering the pitch. Ideally, the PR and SEO teams are using CRM programs that are either linked together or allow exportable reports that can be exchanged daily during the heat of the campaign. Brands and the stories they’re pitching only get one first impression with key influencers and media members; it’s critical that they put their best foot forward.
SEO and PR Teams Must Collaborate to Track Analytics
Integration is important because it will lead to great results. Once the results of your campaign are in, SEO team members must include the PR team(and the marketing leaders that oversee both departments) in the discussion of the analytics reports to effectively gauge the success of the campaign. When both teams have a thorough understanding of the results generated by their tactics and strategies, it empowers them to generate even stronger results moving forward.
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