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SEO and PR – Can the Two Become One?

Blue arrows

SEO: “Methodology of strategies, techniques and tactics used to increase the amount of visitors to a website by obtaining a high-ranking placement in the search results page of a search engine (SERP) — including Google, Bing, Yahoo and other search engines.”  (Webopedia)

PR: “The discipline that looks after reputation, with the aim of earning understanding and support and influencing opinion and behaviour. It is the planned and sustained effort to establish and maintain goodwill and mutual understanding between an organisation and its publics.” (CIPR)

On the surface and in traditional theory at least, two completely different disciplines – one is about getting you higher and easier to find on a search engine, and the other is how to look after your reputation.

SEO’s success is dependent on keywords within a sector to keep your profile raised to the right audiences at the right time, so they find you.

Goals of PR and SEO
With the increasing reliance by, well everyone, on mobile website searching to source activity instantly – surely a “planned and sustained’ effort to keep your website updated with fresh content and showcase any latest activity, an understanding of trends in the sector and influencers is important.

And whilst much of your website may remain static pages in terms of products and services, the most effective way to engage with a target audience is keeping them informed of what you’re doing on a daily, weekly, monthly basis.

Telling Stories
But wait a minute, isn’t this telling a story like you would hire a PR company to tell the press? Or isn’t that like writing a blog? Telling stories with a clear call to action is an ideal way to share, connect, create and inspire – and at the same time can allow you to demonstrate expertise, engage and convert.

And so effective, there are professional bloggers that should be treated in exactly the same way as online publication editors in terms of relationships and networking. Just like the traditional relationship building rules in PR.

PR and SEO Work Together
So the truth is that SEO and PR can work together, but the key to success is to make sure your stories make sense. Whilst SEO will want to optimize keywords, don’t risk the story losing its value. Google is as clever as humans in spotting a story stuffed with keywords that actually makes no sense!

And it’s not just blogs, but PR stunts, events and content calendars can all blend the skillsets of PR and SEO to work collaboratively. Using sharing platforms on social media alongside online publications to further spread your story will all help – we all know that Google loves a good ‘genuine’ link to raise your profile.

So overall, the key to a perfect harmony between SEO and PR…. think about it this way, good, fresh, easy to understand and shareable content has become the glue that binds the two together.

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