Public relations (PR) is the well-known practice of spreading information between your company and the public. There are two main types of PR: offline and online. On one hand, offline PR represents the spread of information through printed newspapers, TV or radio shows, and live events. On the other hand, online PR is about spreading that information solely in the online medium. Most often, the information is spread on social media, blogs, forums, and so on. Ultimately, online PR helps you get your company’s message across the internet through the use of search engines. An online PR specialist also works towards improving your online reputation.
The biggest difference between online and offline PR is the pitch. Most offline publications have an editorial calendar. Pitching a story to a newspaper journalist involves researching the aforementioned editorial calendar to see if an opportunity is available. If an opportunity is available, the pitch will have to be related to the upcoming story.
Online PR works differently. When you want to pitch a story to an online publication, such as a blog, you have to be more careful. Firstly, blogs don’t have editorial calendars. This means you have to research the older blog posts in order to become familiar with the blog’s style and audience. Opportunities are more easily created through online PR as a specialist will have an easier time familiarising himself with the blog.
Thanks to the digital age revolution, public relations have gone through important changes. If you’re looking to establish a strong online presence for your company, online PR should be on your priority list. Your social media outreach and SEO campaign will be more successful if you involve online PR practices. Similar to how offline PR has been the backbone of every successful company in the past decades, online PR should now play an important role in the marketing plan of your company.
How Online PR Helps Your Company
There are 4 main benefits that online PR brings to every company: better brand exposure, improved company credibility, higher conversion rates, better return on investment.
- Better Brand Exposure: increasing the success of your company is done through exposure. If more people know about it, more people will search for your products or services. Online PR increases your brand exposure by putting your content in front of new audiences. In order to achieve this, your PR specialist can create partnerships with other brands or online media platforms. For example, writing guest posts on various blogs will expand your online reach beyond your current user base. Including links to your website in these posts will bring interested readers to you. For a more successful approach, consider linking to a specially designed landing page that contains a call-to-action (CTA). This method will improve the chances of turning those readers into buyers.
- Improved Company Credibility: online influencers are important for the credibility of your company. Whenever one of these influencers mentions something positive about your company in one of their posts, your company gains more credibility. Moreover, remember that the way an influencer portrays your company, your services or your products is the same way that their followers will perceive them. Similar to positive mentions, a negative mention would have the opposite effect. The goal, in this case, is to reach out to more than one influencer. Consistency throughout the influencer opinions will have a greater impact on your company’s credibility. Naturally, your services or products should be top-notch in order for this to happen. Online PR can only do so much. You can’t base your success on falsehood.
- Higher Conversion Rates: guest posts, videos, and other social media publications are a great way of turning a potential customer into a buyer. One of the main advantages is that you can include a direct link to your website in all of those cases, offering easy access to the readers or viewers. A potential buyer will take less time to become familiar with your company’s offer. It becomes easier and faster for your visitors to make a decision regarding a purchase.
- Better Return On Investment: online analytics tools are easier and more reliable to use. Google Analytics or Facebook Analytics are powerful tools that can help you track the results of your online PR campaign. Knowing the impact of your campaign allows you to make future adjustments if necessary. In addition, you can track insights such as article views, number of clicks, the percentage of conversions, etc.
Key Aspects To Look For In Your Online PR Specialist
Like your SEO specialist, your online PR specialist should have a good mix of various skills. The most important skills that you should ask for are knowledge in the field, social skills, and creativity. Moreover, if the specialist you want to reach out to is already known by bloggers and journalists, it’s going to be an easy decision. Developing a fruitful and stable relationship with an online publication won’t always be an easy task. Reputation management skills could also come in handy. You want your PR specialist to know how to handle various situations, especially when your company receives negative mentions. Responding to these situations before they go out of hand is crucial to maintaining your company’s credibility.