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Building Buzz and Boosting Rankings

By Steve Mehr, CEO of WebShark360

2012 was a hard year for SEO.  As wave after wave of search engine algorithm updates were released, it became clear that search engines were trying to close the loopholes that many SEO experts once exploited to boost rankings.  But something interesting happened that many people could not predict: SEO evolved.

Public relations has long been concerned with building buzz and reputation among consumers.  But now it has adopted SEO, seeking to simultaneously build buzz and boost your website rankings.  Today, public relations and SEO combine to not only attract consumer attention to press, but to build more links with press that can be used to boost website rankings.

The Benefits of Using Public Relations as SEO

Public relations is a powerful marketing tool which puts your brand front and center in front of consumers. The key to boosting your brand is to build buzz.  But when you marry SEO techniques with the organic power of public relations, you’re better able to place valuable and newsworthy items in front of consumers.  When you use these techniques, you can achieve the following benefits:

  • Organic traffic
  • Enhanced reputation
  • Increased traffic conversions
  • Increased back links
  • Social media shares
  • Exposure to new groups of consumers

How You Can Use PR as SEO

Now that you’re a believer, let’s look at how you can actually use public relations as SEO.  You’ve got a newsworthy angle, and you’ve got the desire, now let’s get you the knowhow.

  • Write a press release with high value keywords. When you write your press release, consider using high value keywords that you want associated with your brand.  Pepper these keywords in organically and frequently.  Since press releases have to pass editors, you can’t go overboard and expect to get published.  But you can use these keywords naturally and frequently.
  • Use semantically related text in press releases.  Search engines also link semantically related text back to keywords.  So if you’re looking to rank under Los Angeles, consider using related keyword strings such as City of Angels.  When you use semantically related text, you also open yourself up to new communities.  People search differently and often, changing the terms you use can open yourself up to new communities of people.
  • Link through strategic anchor text in your press release. When consumers read press releases, they often will click on anchor text to read more about the business or brand releasing the news. When you select the appropriate anchor text from which to link, you increase the odds that consumers will click on your website’s link.
  • Create a social media campaign to work in tandem with your press release. By merging the social and your press strategy, your brand is creating increased value to consumers.  Search engines show ranking preference to social media content and social shares of your press encourage ranking gains.  You can do this by creating a #hashtag to associate with your brand.
  • Pitch media outlets with an interesting newsworthy item. Often, brands think that press releases alone will create multitudes of links.  But when you pitch media outlets, you can gain quality organic articles and links like crazy.  Large media sources have thousands, even millions of readers or viewers and millions of social media fans.  By pitching the media with your news directly, you can gain access to this.
  • Throw an event and invite the media to attend and tweet it live! You want links? Use the power of public relations to get them! Court journalists and bloggers in your industry with a well planned event. Encourage them to tweet it live and to write about it later.  Using these strategies, you can gain quality back links, social media mentions, and coverage that is sure to bring you the buzz you need.

When you marry public relations and SEO, you’re better able to reach your customers.  So get creative and build some buzz around your business.

About the Author:

Steve Mehr is CEO of WebShark360, a world class attorney marketing firm.  As the preferred vendor for large national law firms like Jacoby & Meyers, WebShark360 offers its clients comprehensive attorney marketing solutions, including content marketing, SEO, public relations, social media, pay per click advertising and media creation. To connect with WebShark360, visit the website here: http://webshark360.com  or connect on Facebook at www.facebook.com/webshark360

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