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PR in the digital age requires a new playbook

Posted by Shivali Anand

October 12, 2021    |     4-minute read (763 words)

Public relations pros say the field has changed dramatically over the last few decades. For starters, PR reps must now tweet, interact with digital influencers, evaluate data, track feedback and determine how to convert leads. Check out these pointers to keep your PR strategy fresh in the digital era.

  1. Produce useful content
The foremost aim of PR is improving a company's reputation. A well-executed content production plan can cultivate a strong image that distinguishes your firm from competitors while also developing an audience of new clients or supporters. Posting blog posts, videos or photos on social media is a simple way to encourage readers to share information they find valuable. This helps to spread the word about your company and enhances your strategy.

  1. Boost your business’s Google ranking
It's not enough to just publish material and hope that people will consume it. Google — and other search engines — must deem it relevant. When performing a Google search, most users will click on the first few pages of results, making it critical to improve your search engine rankings. Optimize your website and content by adding keywords that identify your business or the items and services you provide if you want to appear in Google's top few pages.

Track which keywords drive visitors to your site by using an analytics program such as Google Analytics. Reuse those terms in your social media postings, news releases and other content.

Analytics make it possible for you to see almost everything you need to know about your audience. This is more than just how many people visit your website or how many people click on an ad. It can alert you when a website visitor is ready to convert into a lead or make a purchase decision.

  1. Implement a strong email strategy
Email marketing is a fantastic PR tool. You can anticipate a $36 ROI for every $1 you spend on email marketing. Consider the following methods to get the most out of email:
  • Use a short, intriguing subject line.
  • Use personalization elements to develop a relationship with readers.
  • Include a solid call to action that spurs the audience to act. 
  1. Leverage social media 
Do you recall the #IceBucketChallenge? The ALS Association created the #IceBucketChallenge to raise awareness about amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease. Participants were asked to record videos of themselves dumping ice over their heads and then nominate three people or friends to do the same through social media channels. It went viral almost immediately, with numerous celebrities, including former President George W. Bush and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, taking part. The ALS Association received more than $115 million as a result of the challenge.

Social media allows you to communicate with your target audience in a manner that would have been impossible using traditional PR tactics. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn let you make announcements, interact with others and post information quickly and efficiently, eliminating the need for time-consuming press releases.

  1. Consider influencers
In recent years, the influencer marketing segment has grown into one of the most well-known PR strategies. Bloggers, social media celebrities and authors are examples of influencers who can help you reach your target audience in a manner that traditional advertising cannot. Customers are more inclined to make a purchase if they trust an influencer's advice. According to statistics, not only do 49% of customers rely on influencer recommendations, but 40% of those who have seen something on Twitter, YouTube, or Instagram have also purchased it.

  1. Maintain a fantastic website
PR can undoubtedly increase traffic to your website. But if you don't have a solid inbound marketing strategy in place, you won't be able to convert those visitors into customers. Landing pages, blogs, a clear and unified brand identity and compelling CTAs are all elements that should be included on your site to achieve a high conversion rate. This will enable you to nurture the relationships that arise from your PR and advertising efforts.

  1. Integrate traditional and digital PR efforts
Keep in mind that conventional media will always be a reliable source of information for many people. While an increasing number of individuals are discovering news in the form of soundbites on social media platforms, those seeking balanced and accurate articles may still choose to go to traditional news media websites or TV stations.

The key to your business’s PR success is discovering a way to use both traditional and modern techniques in tandem. Both formats require you to build trust with customers, influencers, bloggers and reporters to get your message out to the widest audience. 

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