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The Perfect Pair: Traditional PR and Digital

March 30th, 2017 Digital

Public Relations is no longer a one-and-done deal. With PR, it is important to take your message beyond the press and provide clients with data that you can use to refresh or refine your overall digital strategy.

In the case of our clients, we’re always looking for ways to develop fresh, creative pieces of content we can deliver to the media through digital vehicles. After a discussion about home improvement etiquette, we realized that the average person wasn’t entirely sure of the industry standard when it came to welcoming a contractor into their home. Is it common courtesy to tip? Is it rude to ask your contractor to remove their shoes? Should you keep your pet(s) confined while the contractor works?

In an effort to provide homeowners with the answers to these questions, we set out to create an infographic on home improvement etiquette. We interviewed homeowners and contractors alike to develop a piece of content that landed our client a spot online with Remodeling Magazine.

This was a win for PR and SEO (Search Engine Optimization). From a PR stance, it positioned our client as an expert in the home improvement industry and provided their customers with more than just products but also a guide that will assist them through all home renovations. It also benefited the client from a digital marketing perspective. Links from reputable sources like Remodeling Magazine benefit brand awareness and organic search value simultaneously.

External links are a factor in organic rankings. While internal links are important, they don’t carry as much weight as an external link does. The search engines view these links as “votes” from third party sources. In theory, the more “votes” your website has, the higher it will rank in search. These links can’t come from anywhere – they have to be relevant to a brand. In this case, Remodeling Magazine was a homerun.

With an understanding of search engine optimization and the capability to explore analytics, we were able to see how many people visited the site through the infographic link. The Home Improvement Etiquette piece referred 325 people back to our clients website.

Referral traffic like this places the user within reach of your website. Our goal is to create content that’s meaningful enough to get them to click through to find out more about a brand.

Our client’s 325 referral users spent time exploring other pages, including the Bathroom Vanities, Bathroom Accessories, and Pros Signup. This data tells us (and the client!) that the information in the infographic enticed users to learn more, ultimately expanding brand awareness.

From a digital standpoint, referral traffic is often a stepping stone on the path to sales (conversions). As seen in the image below, we are able to determine how many visitors came to the site from a referral, like the infographic, and the additional vehicles used to access the site.

Traffic can come from social outlets as well. Our client has an incredible social presence – one that has driven over 50,000 users to the site and more than 500 sales. By sharing this infographic through the clients social channels, we have leveraged our knowledge of referral traffic and used this content to contribute to the 500 sales. This is a great example of how content structured for PR can perform well on social platforms.

It’s not just about external links and referral traffic. While we have our analytical hats on, we can examine other data as well. In taking a closer look at the users who viewed the data directly on the site, we’re able to see where they were before and after reading the infographic.

For example, users interested in the contractor side of the home etiquette story then clicked through to the infographic. From there, these users went to specific category pages, like Vanities or Accessories. This data gives us a better idea of the mindset of the clients’ consumer behavior and the ways in which they are interacting with the site, which ultimately allows us to hone our strategy.

Remarketing is another piece of the digital strategy pie. From a digital standpoint, we’re able to gather information on users the moment they enter a website. With that information, we can target those specific users on other websites that they visit. In this way, the client stays top-of-mind and the chances previous users will return to the site increase. Our clients remarketing campaign brought 141,457 users back to the site.

These PR and digital strategies  aren’t just about generating sales and brand awareness – it comes down to attracting the right user and turning them into a repeat customer. In order to have an effective marketing plan, traditional PR paired with digital strategy will take brands beyond the page and grow audiences.

Born in a digital marketing agency, 4M Communication knows that there’s much more to a piece of content than the exposure. You can take the girls out of SEOM but you can’t take the SEO out of the girls.