SEO for Business_ How to Strengthen Your PR with Links

When people first started to use SEO for business, it was viewed as a completely separate tactic from public relations. As time goes on, however, we’ve seen a relationship form between the two. Now businesses are seeing the benefit of using PR in SEO to get better results.

How so? Public relations puts a company in the spotlight, building brand awareness and credibility through press coverage and mentions. Those mentions, especially when they are online, also boost the quality of search engine optimization. In turn, better SEO leads to more website traffic and brand recognition. It’s truly a win-win.

One of the strongest ways to build SEO is through link building. Before we get into how you can build more links to improve your SEO, let’s look at why these are important.

Links back to your site show search engines that you’re legitimate. It’s like when a friend introduces you to someone and tells you that the or she is trustworthy. The person instantly moves up a notice in your estimation. Now what if several of your close friends told you the same thing about the person? Now you’re even more likely to trust the person.

The same principle applies to link building. The more websites that link to your site, the more clout you you gain with search engines like Google. What does this do for you? It lands you closer to the first page, where potential customers are looking for reliable brands with whom to do business.

True, there are tools out there that do all the work for you. But beware — many of these tools use shady techniques to generate a massive amount of links back to your site. While this seems like the easiest (and cheapest) route, it often backfires. Search engines like Google are wise to these tactics, and often punish people who use them.

While we don’t recommend using just any SEO tool, there are agencies that offer reputable SEO PR services. These agencies can help you to establish valuable back links that will boost your PR efforts.

If you are looking to do this on your own, we can point you in the right direction. First of all, Google wants authentic, high-quality links. What makes a link high quality? The source of the link should…

  • Be relevant to your business
  • Have high authority
  • Be reliable
  • Be trustworthy
  • Have a large audience

How can you get such high quality links? Let’s look at a few key ways to amp up the SEO quality of your website with the PR tactics you already use.

How to Use Your PR in SEO for Business

1. Build Relationships with Influencers

With the right tools and enough time, you can easily find influencers who fit your industry. Tools like Traackr and Buzzsumo can help you to narrow down what influencers would work best for your brand and find them.

It’s important to interact with influencers before asking them for a favor. Start by engaging with them. Like, comment on, and share their posts on social media. Send them interesting information, even if it’s not yours. This will help them to remember you as well as give them a positive association. When the time comes to ask for a favor (like a backlink to your site or a guest post), they will be more likely to agree.


2. Write Timely Content

What’s happening on the world scene? Can you tie your content into that event? This makes your content more appealing to top sites. A word of advice: Jump on such stories quickly, before your competitors do, or the news becomes old. Stay current with local and national events and be prepared to offer your expert opinion when warranted.

For example, say you are in the B2B financial sector. If a current event (such as war or violence) has significant ramifications on the financial market, you can write an article that offers your expert opinion on how the event would impact businesses, or tips for how businesses can cope. This could be a blog post, a LinkedIn or Medium post and/or you could initially and quickly inform local business journalists of your opinion with a quick email.

Not sure where to start? Use an application like Google Alerts to get notified as soon as big stories break. Set it up to notify you when certain industry terms or even people are mentioned on the internet. When you get a notification, brainstorm ways in which you can expand on it with your own expertise.

3. Use Forums to Get Content Ideas

In order to attract the interest of top sites, you need to create content on trending topics. To hone in on an up-and-coming topic, you may need to do a fair amount of research. Where should you look?

There is a veritable goldmine of useful content ideas in online forums. For one thing, you may be able to find a forum that focuses on your particular industry, or search specific industry terms to see what people are talking about — and where.

One such online forum is Reddit, where content ideas are just ripe for the picking. See what questions people are asking about your industry, and create content that will fully answer those questions. Or you could start your own thread, and see where the responses take you.

Another great online forum is Quora, where people ask questions on industry issues. Look for questions that pertain to your industry. Comment or answer a question, showcasing your expertise and authority. Link to some longer-form content on your site if possible buttressing your answer. Use it to get ideas for what’s on people’s minds so you can create in-depth content on other platforms that addresses those queries. Google rewards sites that answer questions people are seeking.

Social listening is another outlet that provides inspiration. Tools like Buzzsumo and Hootsuite do the work for you and show you what’s hot within your industry. From there, create your own take on the subject or go further in-depth into the subject and offer more value to your audience.

4. Think Like a Journalist

If you want to gain backlinks from a top news site, you must first think like a journalist. What stories are going on presently?

For instance, develop your own survey and use the data to shine new light on a developing story. Share a new angle for a story that has already been covered.

Journalists appreciate (and often reward) such forethought with mentions and backlinks.

5. Use Press Releases

The use of press releases has waned in the past few years, and some have even made the strong claim that press releases are dead. Far from being dead, these helpful tools are great for spreading the word about your big news.

Press releases have changed a little bit over the years. Now, more than ever, the key to successful press releases is storytelling. Modern journalists face all kinds of cutbacks and deadlines, so you need to make it easy for them. Create a ready-made story, with data, quotes, and visuals that they will be able to run with.

While syndicated websites can distribute your press release, you won’t get any SEO value from them. Instead, distribute your press release on social media and use keywords that will give it a little lift and help journalists and influencers to find it easily. Make it more appealing by sending it to a few select influencers before you release it to everyone — that increases the value of your story.

6. Use HARO

HARO, or Help a Reporter Out, is a great way to connect with journalists who are looking for a story.

Registration is free. Just enter your name, email address, and information about your industry and expertise. The service will email you when a journalist is looking for your particular point of view. If it’s a good fit for both of you, you’re that much closer to a mention (and a backlink!).

This type of service can help you in in the shorterm to get backlinks to boost your SEO. But it can also help you longterm to cultivate relationships with journalists, bloggers, and influencers.

Follow HARO (@HelpAReporter) on Twitter for more opportunities.

A Few Points to Remember…

  • Link building shows search engines that you are an authority site and boosts your content’s rank on sites like Google
  • Build relationships with journalists to get your name out there and generate links from their site to yours
  • Write content piggybacking on current events; add your own expertise on how the news will effect your industry.
  • Write a press release for any big news using the art of storytelling and distribute it on social media

There’s a valuable place for PR in SEO and vice versa. The more these two industries work together harmoniously, the better results you’ll see across the board.

How do you plan to use your PR to boost your SEO? Let us know in the comments below.