PR Pros, 4 tips on how to be an awesome link builder.
By Jason Poulos (@TheSaganaki)
Links back to a website are one of the most important ranking factors to a search engine. The materials, content and outreach created in the public relations world could be chock full of extremely helpful back links that could help get your clients content on page one of Google.
Are you reaching out to bloggers, websites and the media on your client’s behalf? How about creating articles, press releases and blog posts that will get posted on websites outside of your client’s? If you have any of these responsibilities you could be passing up valuable opportunities for your client. As a PR professional, your influence on these media outlets could be greater than what you thought.
Grasping the concepts of SEO and trying to manage your client work and stay on top of the latest PR trends can seem a little overwhelming. However, integrating some of these best practices into your workflow can create strong results for your client.
Tip 1: You need to know how a search engine works
Just the basics are necessary, if you want to help with your clients rankings some basic SEO knowledge will be very helpful. When relying on a search engine to generate traffic to a website there are two main factors to be concerned about.
- Relevancy: How relevant your site is to the search queries. Meaning, when I search for “Bypass Burger” where is the phrase “Bypass Burger” located on your site. For best results the term (keyword) should be in the url, page title, page description, heading tags and content.
- Popularity (Backlinks): How popular your website is. Search engines determine popularity by links back to your website. The quantity and quality of these backlinks influence a websites ranking.
A website that ranks well in search will be keyword rich and will have a strong backlink profile. Need more SEO tips? Check out my 15 basic SEO tips.
Tip 2: You need to care
More often than not, SEO and PR will not be found in the same agency. Typically, the client will hire two separate agencies, one for PR, the other for SEO/SEM. First off, this lack of integration has it’s own set of issues but most likely the responsibilities of generating traffic and improved search rankings will not fall into the PR bucket. So, if you’re on the PR side why should you care about how your client’s website is ranking in search? You have a myriad of responsibilities of your own, besides that’s another agencies task and not yours.
Well, you should care. What you do in the digital PR world could be full of extremely helpful backlinks that could help boost your client’s search rankings.
All in all, this boils down to caring about your clients. If you want to see them succeed and get better rankings ask them about SEO. Even though this might be another agencies task but your client should be able to provide you with a list of specific keywords and landing pages they are trying to rank for.
Tip 3: Integrate keyword rich links
Even if you don’t care about how a search engine works or your clients this is by far the most important tip in this post. Whatever you are creating needs to have links back to your client’s website. Not just a http://www.clientsite.com at the end of the release but links throughout the article/post/release/pitch…
For instance, let’s say we are trying to rank for “bypass burgers” in Google. When that term, “bypass burger” is used in your article, link it to that specific page on your site that references that content. So, “bypass burgers” would link to http://www.clientsite.com/bypass-burgers/ and it would look like this in your article: bypass burgers. Now, keep on doing this throughout the rest of the article, integrate the supplied keywords into your content and hyperlink them out to the proper pages on your client’s website. Easy, right?
Having these keywords integrated into the article and then linking out to that content is a must. Search engines love links like this as it signals to them the specificity of the content at hand.
Tip 4: Ask for back links
This tip is also found in my 5 SEO tips for PR Pros article but it fits here too. If you catch wind of coverage that you didn’t pitch, go back and ask the author to include a link back to your site if their isn’t already one. Super simple yet effective way to grow a back link profile.
Oh, and why do I keep on mentioning bypass burgers? Because I just read this article on Heart Attack Grill, and it’s pretty crazy! I kind of want to try one too….