Traditional media has not disappeared as some doomsayers had predicted not long ago nor will it anytime time soon. However, the increasing popularity of digital platforms and ownership of smart phones, is giving public relations agencies a clear sign of where they should be focusing their attention.
The outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic and the counter-measures being imposed across the world, has caused a surge in the uptake by consumers of online services and sparked a rising interest in digital marketing.
Digital PR is an online marketing strategy used by companies, organizations and individuals to increase their internet presence. Digital PR/marketing is one of the ways through which PR agencies can target diverse demographics or individuals with content tailored to what suits them.
Social media in particular is cost-effective, fast, interactive, and the easiest means of getting feedback from the targeted audience. Lately, newspapers are purchased and read online, the same applies to television content. Therefore to capture a wider audience for communication as PR practitioner, we ought to adapt and leverage on the various digital channels.
Online publications, blogs podcasts and social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and email marketing, among others, have been added to PR practitioners’ toolbox.
Digital marketing delivers many benefits to clients thus playing a key role in raising their profiles, building brand awareness and generating more visibility for the companies that we work with.
Agencies can now network with journalists, bloggers and influencers. Sharing online press releases leads to high-quality back-links, social media mentions and improves Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Search engines such as Google place a great deal of value on high-quality external links back to your website.
Online PR coverage, notably online trade magazines, will often include a link back to your website which, in turn, helps to improve your standing in search results.
Since decision makers are increasingly turning to the internet to research service providers, being well positioned on digital/online media helps increase brand awareness amongst your target market, enabling you to reach more potential customers.
Not only do these decision makers search for service providers online, they also use internet research to learn more about competitors or companies they are considering working with.
Securing positive media coverage in online publications and having a strong presence on social media enhances your credibility and improves both the quantity and quality of leads generated for your business. Therefore Digital PR strengthens your credibility.
In addition, Digital PR will increase traffic to your website resulting in free visibility by making it easier for other people, including media, customers and influencers, to share your news and content with their own audiences. This will enable you leverage the following of other influential social media accounts.
As you plan to adopt Digital PR, remember to incorporate videos in your digital/social media plan. Video content is shared and viewed more than text and images. Social media posts that include video clips increase organic reach as compared to those with images only. It all seems quite straightforward, but creativity in developing content is also crucial!