Public Relations and Social Media Work Better Together than Apart

Black-bear-group_Public-Relations-and-Social-Media
Public Relations and Social Media Work Better Together than Apart
Black Bear Group – Ashburn, VA

We all know the importance of SEO in ranking your website on the first page when conducting a search but did you know that PR is an important influencer of SEO?

PR and social media are tactics that are ALL about creating and spreading awareness… and hopefully brand recognition and rankings. No longer can marketers afford to have them function in a siloed environment in the universe of marcom. Driving awareness and positive impressions relies on being top of mind, being present, and being FOUND!

To achieve the greatest degree of being found and heard from, both online & offline – we have to transition from the traditional ways we have thought about marketing in general. Strong marketing and performance requires coordinating across platforms at the highest level so traditional marketing (public relations & offline advertising) and digital marketing (SEO and social media) work in concert.

Outbound marketing, like PR, creates new demand and awareness. Inbound fulfills existing demand. The best “off-page SEO” methods have just been PR by other names. “Guest posts” are just bylined articles. “Content plus outreach” predates the Web. Asking anyone for links (link building is essentially a form of PR (Marketingprofs, 4/28/2016).

Integrating PR and SEO

Ironically, SEO and PR work together in many ways unknowingly.
• High-quality content helps earn links back to a brand’s website.
• Links from credible media sources rank high in Google’s algorithm leading to better search results
• The greater the media coverage the more links brand has back to its website
• Relationship between PR and “influencers” results in more links from blog posts and social media, thus increasing SEO.

The integration between SEO and PR is even stronger when executed in a strategic manner so it’s tantamount to align goals across PR, SEO and all other marketing functions. PR and SEO aren’t standalone marketing functions. Integrated messaging requires PR and SEO to work together to achieve the desired goals. Having PR and SEO under one structure reaches greater audiences and achieves greater results in today’s digitally driven world.

Visual Cues Can Enhance Your Content

VISUAL QUES CAN DO A LOT TO ENHANCE CONTENT AND HELP DIFFERENTIATE YOUR BUSINESS

Content can be more than just words on a page. Infographics are engaging and expressive with little to no words, allowing viewers to easily understand your message without having to read a whitepaper or press release. How can you transfer your content to a new medium? First, you should decide why you need an infographic. Would your content be best expressed using visual cues? Also, edit your content so it won’t be overwhelming visually for viewers. Teaming up with a designer can make all the difference when transitioning words to graphics. See more tips here: http://bit.ly/1Thbr17

It’s Important to Pay Attention to Detail

We take good care of our car; changing the oil, getting tune-ups and checking the tire pressure. We take care of our health; getting annual check-ups, taking prescribed medications and hopefully exercising & eating healthy. But what about our businesses? When was the last time you took inventory of your businesses marketing materials? Your website? Your Brand? Are you using stale or outdated materials? Has your message, logo or contact information changed? Put yourself in the shoes of the prospects who might be searching for what you do or the services you offer. Are your happy with what these crucial marketing pieces say? Keeping your marketing materials up to date is critical to building creditability with your prospects. Current, fresh, and even designed to attract different target markets your marketing materials tell your prospects (and yes, even you current customers) that you are control of your business.

So, what can you do to create sustainability in your marketing materials? Creating, designing & printing these materials are expensive and you want to be able to use them for a long while.
First, let’s identify the most commonly used marketing materials. They include:
• Brochures m
• Business Cards
• Business Stationary
• Flyers
• Websites
• Voice Mail Greetings
• Newsletters
• Logo’s
• Power Point Presentations

Now here are a few “rules of the road” to extend the usefulness of the marketing materials mentioned above:
1. Never put dates on your materials (unless they are digital and can be updated). Use a numbering systems if you have collateral that may need updated frequently
2. Use current graphics and imagery , i.e. infographics, work clouds) and avoid overused photos
3. Be aware of the current technologies and be sure those you mention are operational
4. Avoid trendy words or catch phrases that can become outdated quickly.
5. Trademark or copyright items that are part of your corporate identify and use them consistently
6. Avoid flashy colors in either printed or digital materials

Ask yourself when was the last time you really looked at your marketing materials or revised them? They are a reflection of your brand. And while we all would like it if we could have a long shelf life for our materials to reap sufficient ROI and have them be multi-purposed, the world and the customers we serve are ever changing and will pass us by if we don’t take the time to review, refresh & revise the materials to keep them fresh and relevant.

Three Ways to Build Your Brand Using Social Media

Social media is an expected component of today’s marketing plans. It has changed the world in countless ways. People have the opportunity to have an equal voice and instant access to a vast number of followers, friends and friends of followers & friends, etc. So, based on the reach social media can enjoy, how does one take advantage of the incredible opportunities afforded in this space to build your brand?

    1. Think before you leap!

Without a focused plan and a set of goals, jumping on the social media bandwagon will likely result in disaster and disappointment. Plan your work and work your plan. What goals do you want to achieve by embracing social media? Is it a platform for your customer service to shine? A means to drive sales? Are you looking to identify brand advocates so they can help you extend your brand? Once you have your goals identified and in place, only then can you plan out your social media strategy.

    2. Determine your online brand personality

How do you want to be perceived in the social world? If you have a logo & a website, you already have a “brand” but now you need a social media voice to match that brand personality.

So consider the following:

Articulate your value. Your mission. How you compare with your competition

Be sure you’re online and offline visual style & brand identity remain consistent. Don’t use different imagery or colors. That will delude & confuse your intended audience.

Be aware of the tone (your voice) used when using different social media tools. Facebook & Twitter are less formal that LinkedIn per se.

    3. Decide which social media platforms are right for your business

Google+, Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn are the most popular platforms but be sure to identify which ones are used by which target markets (Baby Boomers, Milleniums, Gen-X-ers , etc.). Apply the same decision making here that you did in Tip 1. Align the platform with goal (Pinterest or Facebook for videos: Twitter for customer-related communications). Remember, maintaining a presence on social media takes time and scheduling so figure out which platforms suit your company and best address the needs of your customers.

  • Business has only two functions - marketing and innovation.

    -Milan Kundera
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