The New Digital PR that PR’s are Ignoring

In Digital PR by Marius Badenhorst

Top of GoogleWhat are the benefits of online coverage versus print and how does that affect PR today? Traditionally, the role of a PR is to increase brand awareness by getting placed in publications that reach the desired demographic for a brand. So what’s the new PR? Digital, of course. Brand awareness is still the idea, but we take it even further using tools like Google Analytics to see how sources can also influence SEO.


The Basic Benefits of Digital PR

Imagine a reader looking at a newspaper or magazine and seeing a product they want to buy. They finish reading, put it down and get on with their day, forgetting that they wanted to buy something even after a credible journalist convinced them it was a game changer. No sale.

Online? It’s simple – the journalist has linked the product for you. All you have to do is click and buy.

As a PR you can use Google Analytics to see exactly how many people clicked on the brand site through a piece of coverage, and how many of these people actually purchased from the site (conversion).


Plus Some Extras

In general, coverage online also reaches a larger target audience for the following reasons:

Sharing: The greatest value of social media is the ability to engage with a community of people. Brands and publications alike can build relationships with customers beyond just normal transactions – this encourages loyalty and customer retention.
For content marketing, and in particular sharing, it’s extremely useful, just look at the infographic that recently went viral for “What happens one hour after drinking a can of coke”. The PR value of content like this is extremely valuable, because once it becomes viral, publications will be enticed to cover the popularity of it.


Accessibility: Aside from the obvious newspaper sites that you have to pay to view, online media is free which makes it accessible to all and increases its reach. Think about the articles that you share with friends.

Instant Gratification: Journalists from the Mail Online have to churn out a news story every hour (that’s why it’s always on the pulse and is the most read site in the world). Thanks to publications like this, as a digital PR you no longer have to wait for promised coverage. Long leads can take up to three months to show and when impressing a new client you want to show off your work instantaneously.


The Link Between PR and SEO

What is Domain Authority?
Domain Authority is a score (on a 100 point scale) developed by Moz that predicts how well a website will rank on search engines. A Digital PR would measure how a site would impact SEO.

It’s all about good quality links
When Google started to place more importance on quality of content, relevant content and premium sites linking to your site, SEO and PR started working together. Good quality links and content have become the glue which binds Search Engine Optimisation and Public Relations together.

This is why a link from the Mail Online is gold, while that sexy piece of print coverage in Vogue doesn’t mean as much to a Digital PR – it has zero impact on SEO.

All good PR practitioners are news junkies and with Digital PR, you can really use current affairs to your advantage. Current affairs are an ideal way to gain good links, for example, that Coke infographic that went viral is excellent if you have a nutritionist client for an opinion on it.


Join the New School of PR

To recap, there are 3 main benefits of digital PR.

1. It targets a larger audience

2. Increases brand search volumes, which in turn gives higher conversion rates

3. As Digital is “here and now”, it has a direct link to ROI


Finally, like all PR, it helps to raise and brand’s profile and will get it in front of the right audience.

At MediaVision we create bespoke strategies that are relevant to the client’s goal, by using both SE and PR tactics. We make sure that the Digital PR works in sync with an overarching campaign that will complement your social media, SEO strategy, blog content and more importantly, your marking calendar.

Get In touch if you need some more info 🙂

About the Author

Marius Badenhorst