Digital PR can drive brand awareness and organic performance with the right strategy
Brand visibility is crucial during economic downturns to keep brand advocacy long-term
Brands will be the most successful if they use data from other channels to improve their approach.
I know it’s tempting to cut back on spending in a recession but it’s important that brands remain visible to retain brand loyalty. Digital PR is an affordable way to do this.
The future front-runners in brand marketing will be those who adopt a cross-channel approach. They use data from other channels to inform and resonate with their audience.
Given the current economic climate, businesses and brands are likely to make budget cuts across the globe.
Companies need to be realistic about the growth prospects they have over the next few weeks and make sure every dollar of marketing dollars is properly accounted for. This may lead to increased investment in performance channels such as paid media but it will also result in higher cost per click (CPCs). You can still be measurable while reducing costs by being creative and focusing your energy on earning attention, rather than continuing to pay per click or impression.
I believe digital PR are two of the most important tools you have in your marketing arsenal. With the right strategy, they can help drive brand awareness and organic performance.
If you are only using Digital PR to drive traffic to your links, you’re missing the point.
Digital PR is used for building authority and links to relevant pages in key categories to increase search engine performance. If you have the right measurement tools, a targeted strategy that is aligned with SEO objectives will allow you to track ROI. This activity helps to harvest demand and feeds into lower funnel activities. Higher rankings mean more traffic and conversions.
If you only use it for that purpose, you are missing out on an enormous opportunity higher up the marketing funnel.
Digital PR can be used to increase search demand and brand awareness by securing high-impact, brand-led coverage in authoritative and influential publications. This validation by a third party is a great way to build credibility, credibility, customer advocacy and trust, while driving organic performance through quality links.
To achieve brand and performance, however, you must create relevant and engaging content your target audience loves to read and sharespan styling=”font-weight 300 ;”>. It is not a good idea to create content for links only. You should also consider wider business goals and make sure that you are targeting the right press.
Digital PR should not be viewed as a purely ‘intent-driven’ marketing discipline that aims to improve rankings. It is a discipline that can drive demand and awareness while helping to capture intent-led traffic.
Recession: Why brand visibility is more important
Economic downturns can be difficult and unpredictable. It’s important to maintain visibility and salience. With tighter budgets, consumers will become more selective and prefer to purchase from brands they believe in and that are relevant to their needs.
In times of economic uncertainty, we have seen brands that retain their brand relevance and brand awareness, retain more market share and can bounce back faster. Mark Ritson’s Marketing Recession Playbook offers additional information and resources on the subject.
You need to make sure that your digital PR is based on cross-channel insights in order to achieve true brand performance.
Sharing cross-channel insight to deliver better ROI
Although marketers claim they work cross-channel, the truth is that many teams still work in silos across brands and performance teams.
It is important to dismantle silos and use data insights from all channels to create a single strategy.
To drive organic growth, it is important to have key SEO insights, search volumes, brand traffic and relevance. You should also consider other channels to optimize performance.
Another example is that paid search and PPC teams will have lots of data that you can use for your organic strategy. What are the most expensive keywords? These keywords can be targeted to increase organic rankings, thereby allowing you spend less.
Display placement reports will be available to your programmatic team. These will give you insight into which publications and websites are being visited by your target audience. This information should be used to inform your target outreach lists. This team can provide valuable insights for your PR brainstorms by providing paid social perspectives on which content is performing well.
Boost your digital PR coverage
To maximize results, you should not only be working with other channels teams to develop your strategy. You need to collaborate with them throughout the entire process.
If you can generate some amazing linking digital PR coverage on a credible publication, this is a great example. This will increase brand awareness and SEO performance. However, you can make it even more effective by leveraging paid social to amplify the impact.
Mini case study: Maryland cookies use public relations to reach 5+ millions people
Maryland reached out to us for help because they needed to coordinate PR, programmatic and paid social in order to increase mass awareness about their Sugar-Free Cookie and drive new customer sales. We reached 5.3 millions people through an integrated approach that combined PR, paid social and programmatic. You can view the case study here.
In past campaigns, we have seen that PR content can perform better than ad creativity and can help you to avoid ad fatigue.
Take immediate steps to improve your 2023 marketing strategy
It is important to establish a framework to bring all channels together in order to achieve success.
Journey Further uses the “4Ds” – Define, Develop and Deliver.
This phase includes asking all channels for insight and data, based on their most recent campaigns and lessons learned. To ensure that the discovery phase goes as smoothly as possible, it is a good idea to assign a client leader who will be responsible for compiling a list and briefing documents. This will allow you to identify the most lucrative opportunities across all channels.
Based on all the information received, agree on the best goal and objectives. Develop a strategy that will achieve them all and maximize ROI.
A clear plan should be established with roles and responsibilities for each channel. SEO and PR will lead an organic growth strategy. However, other channels need to be clear about how they can amplify the activity at each stage and what lessons they can learn from it.
Marketing activity is activated. This campaign may include influencer marketing or paid social media tactics.
Reporting using the right metrics
Cross-channel work has another benefit: you can report on more metrics, which gives you a better and more complete view of ROI.
You and your team can create a live dashboard that you can access 24/7 using tools like Data Studio. This will allow them to monitor and check in on progress at all times. This will give you continuous insight that will allow you to improve your marketing efforts while delivering one strategy that allows you to be visible and drives performance.
Beth Nunnington, VP of Digital PR at Journey Further is responsible for leading digital PR strategies for some of the most prominent brands in the world. Her work has been featured by The Drum, PR Moment and Prolific North. Follow Beth @BethNunnington on Twitter.
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Search Engine Watch’s first article was How to Use Digital PR and Cross-Channel Data to Increase Organic Growth.
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