How PR can Improve your SEO – Digital Marketing Strategies

By Mark Macias

Just when you thought your SEO strategy was solid, Google changes the rules. The new algorithm impacted 90 percent of search traffic.

Of course, we all know Google doesn’t reveal details on its algorithm but one thing Hummingbird does reinforce is the importance of content.

So why the algorithm change? Google has trained consumers to ask questions when searching for results, so it was only natural this latest search evolution would place a higher emphasis on how your search looks for answers. Unlike the earlier years of search, when keywords were used to find topics with search engines, Google now places a higher emphasis on content that delivers valuable information.

What does Hummingbird mean for your SEO marketing strategy?

It means if you are creating content for your company blog, you should pose questions in your copy, followed by the answer. Or even better yet, ask the question with an H2 tag and answer the question in the next sentence (like the last paragraph did).

Here is an example of how this new strategy can help your SEO better promote your content.

If you own a business, you know the importance of ROI and PR. But what is the ROI of public relations? (You can download our white paper on ROI of PR by clicking here). Under the new Hummingbird SEO, your future content should be asking questions, like in that example. In the past, ROI and PR, may have led to a decent search ranking, but under Hummingbird, Google is now taking a closer look at content and determining which content is answering the right questions.

There is another important item that the new Hummingbird reveals.

Content is King on the web and if you’re not creating new content, your business is at a strong disadvantage when it comes to search engines. Yes, your business can pull out ads and market itself on Facebook, but when those ads are done, you lose your exposure. However, if you create solid content in your industry and answer key questions for your customer base, the overall ROI of that content will be much better than a pure ad play.

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If you like what you read, you can hear more PR and digital marketing insight from Mark Macias in our #alwaysfreshPR podcast. Listen to us on your favorite channel by clicking here.

Mark Macias is a former Executive Producer with NBC and Senior Producer with CBS. He’s also the author of the communications book, Beat the Press: Your Guide to Managing the Media. Macias consults small and large businesses on publicity, crisis communications and digital strategy.

The Cat and Mouse Strategy – It applies to PR

by Mark Macias.

Why does the cat always catch the mouse? When you think of how agile and quick a mouse can be, he should be able outmaneuver the cat. Yet, nearly 100 percent of the time, the cat will catch the mouse.

That’s not just a fun question. It’s actually a way of thinking that applies to PR and business.

First off, I’m not an expert on mice or cats. I have never owned a cat and I hate mice. But as a person who lives in Brooklyn, and every New Yorker will tell you – “if you have mice, get a cat and the problem will go away.”

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Why Fear of Failure Destroys the Best PR Campaigns

              

By Mark Macias

Fear is an attitude that can never be associated with public relations. A creative media strategy requires confidence in an idea and strength with the execution.

The best publicists know they can’t be afraid of creative ideas when pitching reporters. The only thing more dangerous than fear? Complacency.

If your PR firm hasn’t succeeded recently with media outreach, it’s time to assess their level of fear. How far will they go to push your ideas and angles? Are they pushing stories that are already in the news, or are they conceptualizing new ideas that leading publications will want to follow?

Here’s a look at what separates the best PR firms from the agencies that never succeed.

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Future of PR – Revolves around Reputations and Search Engines

By Mark Macias

One of our nonprofit clients went to a Google marketing conference and shared with me some of the best takeaways he heard. One of the boldest statements came from a Google executive who told the crowd that in the future, there will be no brands.

It seems hard to believe that brands won’t matter in the future, but it makes sense. Yes, household names, like McDonalds, Starbucks and Netflix will continue to be in our subconscious. However, among smaller brands – especially in the B2B sector – will become more susceptible to branding from Google. Let me break it down further. Continue reading “Future of PR – Revolves around Reputations and Search Engines”

The Power of Local TV – Driving Targeted Leads and Exposure

Local TV is still by far one of the most targeted ways to get your story in front of consumers. It is especially effective when you want to sell a product or service to a community.

A recent report from Nielsen found consumers spend an average 4.3 billion minutes watching content on their laptop, tablet, phones and TV. And when it comes to consuming information on the community, those viewers turn to their local news.

MACIAS PR recently ran a campaign in Baltimore for a nonprofit that needed to raise awareness for their community programs. The nonprofit wanted people in the community to learn about their free tech work training programs that could help them launch a career in tech.

This TV segment, which you can see above, was far more effective than any 30-second commercial. The segment told the story through an actual student, which was much more persuasive and emotional than any canned commercial message.

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Affiliate Marketing PR Campaigns – Why One Size does not Fit All

By Mark Macias

The owner of an affiliate service emailed me recently, asking about a PR starter kit for her clients. Her intentions were in the right place with her email.

“I’m looking for a very inexpensive package to offer my (affiliates), a sort of starter kit to help kick-start their marketing campaign. Most of them have no clue what to do,” she wrote.

Hiring a publicist is not like buying a shirt. There is no universal “starter kit” that works for every business.

For each campaign to be successful, you need to identify the story and what makes it unique. If you are selling t-shirts to teenagers, that requires a different publicity strategy than selling suits to men. And to underscore that statement, it’s even more strategic when targeting women.

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How to Sell your Story to the Media – PR Advice

By Mark Macias

There are several critical elements that lead to earned media, but if I had to sum it down to one word, I’d say it’s “editorial.”

Earned media is not about advertising your services to reporters. Journalists aren’t there to listen to a sales pitch. Their job is to identify the news angle.

MACIAS PR works with clients in different industries – healthcare, technology, digital health, nonprofits, consumer services. Our team is constantly speaking with journalists, reporters, writers and producers about news stories, across journalism beats.

Even though our stories vary by industry, we never push promotional material to reporters. It’s a critical differentiator that separates MACIAS PR from other PR firms. We only sell the news story that positions our client in the center of it.

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Do I need PR or SEO? This assessment will help you.

By Mark Macias

There’s a lot confusion around PR and SEO. I hear it frequently from both clients and potential clients, as they co-mingle these two terms.

PR and SEO might seem similar on the surface but their approach requires a different strategy and execution. Both have different objectives, and that end-game requires a different pregame.

Let’s start with SEO. Google doesn’t reveal much about its search algorithm but they have revealed publicly that content plays a pivotal role in search ranking. Quality content gets a higher ranking with Google, moving you up to the first page. How you market that content also influences your ranking.

How do Media Placements help with SEO?

Media placements are another factor that influence SEO. Google places a higher value on websites that are mentioned in the news. For example, if your business is featured in the New York Post as the best law firm, Google’s algorithm will rightfully assume that your business has more credibility than a law firm that wasn’t mentioned. So in simple terms, the more media outlets that write about your business, the more credibility and higher ranking Google will provide.

One of the biggest misnomers with SEO is that you need a back-link to benefit from a news story. That’s actually a major misconception. Google changed the game after they realized SEO firms were cheating the game and buying back-links. And several years ago, Google even filed a patent that allows it to rank sites without the use of a back-link. In simple terms, if a news site doesn’t include a back-link to your website, your business still benefits with the ranking.

Do Press Releases help with SEO or Media Placements?

Reporters and journalists are smart. They don’t want to read an advertisement. They are looking for the news editorial value, which is completely juxtaposed to content marketing. If you’re trying to get news coverage from a press release, you should be thinking of the news editorial value first. If you want to improve your search ranking with a press release, you do the opposite and prioritize the most important keywords.

The best PR firms will leverage the news cycle by positioning the client into the news cycle – around an editorial angle, not a marketing angle. This is a crucial strategy that MACIAS PR applies to all of our campaigns.

Of course, this is a very high-level view of SEO, but it does provide best practices to improving your search ranking out of the gate. There are of course other tactics, strategies and approaches that apply to both PR and SEO.

Who is the best publicist in the world?

For example, if you type into Google: “who is the best publicist in the world?” – you should see a description about about Mark Macias. Now that involves a tactic that is neither SEO nor PR.

Want to see how we can apply these approaches to your business? Click on the green button at the bottom and message me.

We can also give you a PR estimate if you click here.

Marketing peers named MACIAS PR the 2017 and 2018 Strategic PR Firm of the Year. In 2015, 2016 and 2017, Finance Monthly named MACIAS PR the Financial PR Firm of the Year. The founder – Mark Macias – is a former Executive Producer with NBC and Senior Producer with CBS in New York. He’s also a frequent contributor with CNBC and author of the books, Beat the Press: Your Guide to Managing the Media and the Tao of PR.

Why Story Angle Matters with the Media

By Mark Macias

The two photos might look similar at quick glance. It’s the Brooklyn Bridge with people on the street. It’s shot on the same day.

When it comes to the media, the position of the angle makes the difference between success and failure. The best PR firms understand the nuances and viewpoint that can change with subtlety.

MACIAS PR continually digs for the unique angle that best positions the client in the news. We don’t just run with our first big idea, nor do we “spray and pray” for media placements.

Each media campaign and story pitch is methodical and debated.

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Client TV Segment on the NYC Morning Show

By Mark Macias

Potential clients are ambitious when it comes to publicity. They frequently tell me they want their products to reach the biggest audience on TV.

You can’t blame them. Bigger is usually better, right? Actually, that’s not always the case.

You want to place your product where your consumers and clients are located. It sounds simplistic enough, but it’s over-looked as a strategy when it comes to PR. Your PR strategy should align with your goals – first.

Continue reading “Client TV Segment on the NYC Morning Show”