I wrote a post in June stating that PR’s digital opportunity would come at the expense of SEO consultancies.
Here’s the core rationale —
Virtually every buyer around the world conducts some form of online due diligence, often plugging keywords into Google. As search engines increasingly favor quality of content — not technical acuity — in delivering search results, PR sits in the perfect position to address this.
Media coverage and the sharing of compelling content both generate backlinks in a natural way – emphasis on “natural,” not buying backlinks on a street corner in Bucharest – which turns out to be a top indicator for search engines.
With this in mind, we’ve created a SlideShare deck called “The Blurring Line Between Digital Marketing and PR.” It lays out the dot-connecting logic for emphasizing organic search and why PR should lead the charge … assuming PR shifts to applying storytelling techniques in creating content (more on this in the deck).
We speak from experience that started with an experiment in 2010. Could we take our existing content on the Toyota recall and build a site with page 1 performance for organic search? The answer was a thought-provoking “Yes.” We figured that if we could cut through the noise of such a high-profile event with a rudimentary understanding of SEO, imagine what we could do with real expertise.
It’s been a journey with the requisite twists, turns and naysayers — “If you haven’t descended from Mt. Sinai, you know nada about SEO” – to reach this point.
Today, I no longer have to imagine what we could do with real expertise.
We’re doing it.
BTW, even now if you plug [toyota pr crisis] into Google, our humble experiment shows up on page 1, typically above Mashable, The Wall Street Journal and Business Insider.
In many ways, I think the SEO boat left a decade ago and there are just too many PR pros stuck on an island wondering if they are ever going to get a second chance. SEO is so important to what we do.
Google’s increasing tilt toward compelling content is that second chance. MOZ published a Slideshare last week called “Cracking the SEO Code for 2015” which indirectly makes a case for PR.