Exceptional Content Marketing with Anna Hrach

Exceptional Content Marketing with Anna Hrach

In the latest episode of the PR Talk podcast, Amy talks with Anna Hrach about what makes great content marketing, how to measure results, what role PR has in content marketing and vice versa, how to repurpose content and more.

Anna Hrach is a Content Strategist at Convince & Convert, an occasional host of the Social Pros Podcast, a highly-rated speaker, and recognized as one of the 50 Influential Women in Content Marketing.

Here are some highlights from the conversation, be sure to listen for more details and insight:

 

2:22 – How Anna became a content marketer

 

3:20 – What makes great content?

Anna talks about the criteria they use at Convince & Convert, that the content must be utility-based (see Jay Baer’s book Youtility). It must be something people actually want or need and is helpful to them. But it also needs to help you reach your business goals and your audience reach their goals.

 

6:36 – A lot of content marketing is providing free advice. How do you reach your business goals by providing free advice?

Providing valuable advice builds trust and building trust is becoming the #1 barometer of a successful brand. Trust is why people choose a specific brand over another, but trust has to be built over time.

 

8:03 – How do you measure content marketing results?

There are many tools to measure the hundreds of metrics that can be associated with content marketing, but you need to measure what matters. Start by figuring out what matters to you (or your business) most and measure that. Look at the intent of the piece of content (what are you trying to accomplish by producing it), what metrics align to that intent (shares, downloads, sales inquiries) and then you can get an idea of how it is performing.

 

9:15 – What role does PR have in Content Marketing and vice versa?

Anna talks about the concept of “surround marketing” and how more content is being created than ever before, which causes lots of noise. Surround marketing is the concept that content should be coming from everywhere which includes media and public relations. PR can work with the content marketing team to place content and the content marketing team can support PR.

 

11:37 – How do we repurpose content (w/o duplicate content concerns)?

In regards to duplicate content concerns, Anna says that content can be quite similar if used in different places, that Google is smart enough to understand when we are varying content to a specific channel or audience. You should be modifying your content for your diverse audiences anyways and if you do that, you should be fine. See this video for more:

 

15:22 – What do you think about syndicated sites (like Business2Communty)?

Syndicating can be helpful if it helps you reach your audience effectively. Will it reach a different (or bigger potentially) audience? In PR terms, you can think of it like it getting picked up on the wire (AP type wire, not a PR distribution wire).

 

16:43 – How do you get started in Content Marketing?

Start with strategy (who you are targeting and why), then key messages you want to communicate. But you must set content creation parameters as constraints breed creativity. Then you set your strategy in motion instead of producing “random acts of content.”

 

18:26 – What do you mean by “constraints breed creativity?”

It is really hard to brainstorm good ideas or be creative when you have no direction. When you give people the world you get crickets, that giving directions (layers and constraints) will really help people get going.

 

19:45 – What do we do after we have created something we are proud of (the marketing part of content marketing)?

You have to distribute the content after you have created it. You can’t just count on SEO or simply putting out on your blog. You need to use your various marketing changes like social media, emails and newsletters and use content atomization (the act of taking one big piece of content and spinning it into smaller bite-size pieces of content). Share those smaller pieces across your diverse marketing channels. Anna strives to use the 1:8 rule which means you should be able to get eight smaller bits of content out of one big piece).

Sounds a lot like maximizing in PR doesn’t it?

 

Don’t Miss an Episode

You can access more great episodes by subscribing to the PR Talk podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio and Spotify.

About the guest: Anna Hrach

Anna is a content strategist at Convince & Convert, a host of the Social Pros Podcast and ranked one of the Top 50 Most Influential Women in Content Marketing. She is also a frequent speaker (including Portland’s Engage Conference).

Connect and follow Anna on social media:

Anna Hrach on PR Talk

This episode of PR Talk is brought to you by PRSA Oregon

Throughout Oregon and Southwest Washington, PRSA provides members with networking, mentorship, skill building and professional development opportunities – whether you are a new professional fresh out of college or a skilled expert with 20 years in the industry. Check out PRSAoregon.org for more information on how membership can help you grow and connect.

Digital PR Dictionary

Digital PR Dictionary

Links, Domain Authority, SEO PR…What Does It All Mean?

We recently published a Public Relations Dictionary with many definitions of commonly used terms mostly in the classic or traditional PR realm. While many of those words and expressions are also thrown about when it comes to Digital PR, we thought it may be beneficial to also compile a list of industry terms more specific for our click craving friends.

Content Marketing: The creation and sharing of valuable content — typically online, but not exclusively — as a marketing program. Content forms can include words (blog posts, articles, etc.), images, audio and video, and must provide value to the audience.

Digital PR: Using public relations (PR) strategies and tactics in digital marketing. Pretty much anything you are going to do in marketing today.

Domain Authority: Domain Authority or DA is a metric created by the SEO software company MOZ to demonstrate how likely a website is to rank on a Search Engine Results Page (SERP) on a scale of 1 to 100. It is not a score from Google (or any other search engine) and does not actually affect a website’s rank, but it is a metric that can be used to determine SEO effectiveness over time and versus competitors. DA is also often used by Digital PRs as a factor when creating media lists and target outlets.

Domain Rating: Similar to DA (above) Domain Rating is a metric created by Ahref to show the strength of a website’s backlink profile in regards to quality and quantity.

Guest Post: When an author writes (or contributes) a blog post (sometimes referred to as an article) for a website (blog, news site, etc.) that they do not own. The purpose of the guest post is to share valuable content, reach a new audience, earn a link, and/or drive credibility.

Keywords: The words or phrases that an organization wants to show up for in search engine query results.

Link Building: The specific act of trying to create links (see below) to a website. Most commonly to increase the SEO value of a website.

Links: Links, or often referred to as backlinks, are references from one website to another that can be clicked on to send the users to that site. Links are a significant ranking factor for SEO. There are several types of links, the most common are regular or do-follow, and no-follow (with the subgroups of sponsored and UGC (user-generated content). For more see Moz’s Types of Links in SEO.

Nofollow: a specific type of link (or technically a link attribute) that tells Google to not pass any PageRank or SEO value from one webpage to another.

Page Authority: Similar to Domain Authority but specifically focused on a specific page within a website, not the domain as a whole. While many SEOs and PR professionals consider DA when analyzing link and mention opportunities, note that specific pages of websites show up (or rank) in SERPs, not domains.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO): SEO is the strategies and tactics to have a website perform well in organic search engines (i.e. Google and Bing). SEO is based on how the website is built, the content on the website and search authority signals (inbound links, references and citations).

SEO PR: The use of public relations (PR) methods with the primary purpose of improving search engine optimization (SEO) results.

SERP or Search Engine Results Page: This is the results page of a Google (or other search engines) query. Typically the goal is to have your website or webpage show up for search terms you would like to be associated with. Typically the higher on the page a result is, the more likely it is to be clicked on.

 

What did we miss? 

Let us know in the comments or via social media about any terms that you think we missed in the Digital PR Dictionary. We’ll update it from time to time as PR and marketing are ever-evolving.

Featured image courtesy of Eduardo Gorghetto via Unsplash

Getting Unstuck with Dr. Charles [Podcast]

Getting Unstuck with Dr. Charles [Podcast]

In the latest episode of the PR Talk podcast, Amy talks with Dr. Charles Redd about getting unstuck, leadership, discovering your strengths, finding your purpose and what it means to be a servant leader.

4:40 – Getting Unstuck

Dr. Charles provides a baseball player analogy on how to get unstuck. Focusing on the number one skill that you do well, the one that comes easiest, and giving it more attention and energy.

7:18 – Leading Teams

Using a King of the Hill example, smart and wise leaders realize you need everyone to get to the top and leaders need to ask questions of their teammates to uncover who does what well to add to the vision of the team. Then when you understand the strengths of each member of the team, that brings value to the whole team which helps them arrive at their goal.

9:20 – Helping People Figure Out Their Strengths

Start with why (why am I here) and what can I share with others. Dr. Charles shares an example about conversations with new job seekers at a career fair using the example of why asking the question “what do you have?” is the wrong question at a career fair. Instead, those folks need to think about what job they would choose if all careers paid the same. Answering that question will help you understand what you want to do.

12:30 – How To Find Your Purpose?

Find what you are good at and passionate about and you will eventually get that ah-ha moment. Then you get to go to work instead of you got to go to work…

16:14 – How Taking the Approach of Using Your Purpose Can Help in PR

Amy talks about how taking the purpose approach to any job can help you find value. Specifically in PR, there are so many job types within PR you can always find a place that plays to your strengths. She also asks Dr. Charles for advice for PR leaders to understand how to highlight what they do best.

19:40 – Servant Leadership

What it means to be a servant leader including not looking at what you get from a relationship or business dealing, but what I can give. It’s an attitude of giving first, but knowing that when you give, you also get.

23:36 – How PR People Can Be Servant Leaders

Amy talks about giving to the press to just help them do their job, without needing something in return and how many PR people do this without even knowing the term servant leader. How it feels better to give than receive and if you give first, something may come back to you in return.

 

25:37 – How To Learn More

 

26:40 – The Redd Line and Time to Teach

 

Don’t Miss an Episode

You can access more great episodes by subscribing to the PR Talk podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio and Spotify.

About the guest: Dr. Charles Redd

Dr. Charles Redd, Jr. is a nationally recognized Fortune 500 business leader, adjunct professor, speaker, and ministry founder. With more than 30 years of exceptional performance in both business and ministry, Dr. Redd has a profound approach to developing successful leaders. His track record of transforming underperforming sales teams at The Hershey Company, PepsiCo – Frito-Lay, and Coca-Cola Enterprises has made him a national leader in operations, sales leadership, and sales revenue. Dr. Charles hosts the podcast Dr. Charles Speaks and is the author of Don’t Stop Now.

Connect and follow Dr. Charles on social media:

Michael Cottam technical seo consultant

This episode of PR Talk is brought to you by PRSA Oregon

Throughout Oregon and Southwest Washington, PRSA provides members with networking, mentorship, skill building and professional development opportunities – whether you are a new professional fresh out of college or a skilled expert with 20 years in the industry. Check out PRSAoregon.org for more information on how membership can help you grow and connect.

Why You Need to Create an Effective Content Marketing Strategy

Why You Need to Create an Effective Content Marketing Strategy

Way back in 1996, when the internet was still in its infancy, Bill Gates wrote what has now become a famous essay entitled, “Content is King.” In this essay, the Microsoft founder described the future of the internet as a place to distribute and monetize content. “.. [T]he broad opportunities for most companies involve supplying information or entertainment,” he wrote. “No company is too small to participate.”

Gates’ essay is so well known because his predictions proved to be remarkably accurate. Twenty-five years later, the internet is awash in podcasts, videos, blog posts, songs, photographs and anything else that can be digitized. Much of this content is free. However, many creators and corporations have figured out how to leverage their talent and available tools to sell content online. What’s more, internet users have shown a near-endless appetite for this material. From searching how-to videos on YouTube, streaming the latest release on Spotify, or reading someone’s take on the day’s political news, billions of hungry eyes are eager to consume relevant content.

 

What is Content Marketing?

It didn’t take long for digital marketers to use these online tools to produce content for their clients. Unlike digital marketing, which is a more overt attempt to sell products or services, content marketing distributes information using digital platforms to build community and brand affinity or help people make decisions. 

Let’s consider skis, for example. Where digital marketing uses tools like search engine marketing and social media advertising to sell someone a pair of skis, content marketing attempts to create an experience around skiing or mountain adventures, while still pursuing traditional marketing goals. This could be through explainer videos that teach consumers how to maintain tune their skis or an infographic that helps someone choose the type of skis that are right for them. Content marketing aims to create material users find valuable so they’ll associate those positive feelings with a particular brand when they eventually make a purchase decision.

Content marketing is a popular technique in business-to-business marketing campaigns, where traditional digital marketing tools are less useful. Companies can accelerate prospects through their sales funnel by creating content that explains crucial products or anticipates potential customer’s questions or objections. 

 

Examples of Content Marketing

This technique is as old as marketing itself. However, content marketing has become increasingly popular as more and more of our daily activities move online. Over the years, some companies have found very clever ways to send their brand messages using the approach. 

In 2015, the Unilever-owned brand Dollar Shave Club launched Mel, an online magazine that focuses on lifestyle and culture topics from a man’s perspective. While Mel targets the same audience as Dollar Shave Club, it doesn’t sell razors. Instead, it’s become a respected outlet for thoughtfully written content with a distinct voice. While Mel is now its own company with a dedicated website, some of its content is cross-published on the Dollar Shave Club site, which shows how versatile this kind of content can be. 

Content marketing isn’t only about writing. Search the free stock photo site Unsplash for home office images, and you’ll find a series of photographs provided by Dell’s XPS brand of laptops. These images feature sleek and modern workspaces that any home office warrior would covet, with the sleek and modern XPS laptops front-and-center. Every blogger or web developer understands the value of free stock photography. In this instance, XPS has found a way to harness that built-in demand and provide helpful solutions that also happen to send a strong brand message.

Photo by XPS on Unsplash

Photo by XPS on Unsplash

The goal of these two examples is not to make a conversion. Instead, they associate a brand with an attractive aesthetic, relatable point of view or aspirational identity. When a purchase decision comes further down the line, it will hopefully be informed, in part, by the content the buyer consumed up until that point.

 

How Can Content Marketing Drive Public Relations?

Public relations professionals can use content marketing techniques to drive public opinion or sentiment in the same way marketers use content to drive customer behavior. In early 2019, Slack, the popular workplace messaging app, revealed an extensive logo redesign that was met with… mixed reviews. As part of the launch, Slack published a piece of content on its website explaining the very practical reasons why the change was so necessary. Even though not everyone appreciated the new logo design, Slack’s rationale for the change was widely cited by the media. As a result, their content marketing had driven extensive media coverage (see Google News results) including links from 392 domains.

Media Coverage for Slack via Google News

Media Coverage for Slack via Google News

 

Fifty years ago, a leading business automation company likely would have issued a press release explaining a significant brand change. Today, companies can steer the conversation through carefully created talking points while achieving better results using tools like a company-owned blog and social media channels.

It doesn’t take controversy for content marketing to be a successful PR strategy. PR experts can take day-to-day content like blog posts, videos, white papers, podcasts and more, and break them into smaller, more digestible pieces they can use in many different ways. When done correctly, content marketing creates flexible assets that sales, marketing and PR professionals can use to bring more attention to your brand. It only requires an overarching strategy that guides those efforts

 

Utilizing Your Team to Create a Winning Content Marketing Strategy

Fortunately, you don’t have to be Unilever or Dell to develop an effective content marketing strategy. Instead, you need a focused approach that defines your audience, goals, and deliverables. Here are a few things to consider as you begin developing your own content strategy:

Define Who You’re Talking To:
Every piece of content you create should begin with its audience in mind. Start by defining your audience and the solutions you’re trying to provide.

Set Your Goals:
Next, define what you want to accomplish with your content. This step will inform how you distribute what you produce and the tools you’ll use to measure success.

Inventory the Deliverables:
There’s no need to reinvent the wheel. If you don’t have the time or resources to produce videos, don’t try and force it. Instead, assess your company’s strengths and create content that aligns with what you’re best at.

Measure and Repeat:
Track your content marketing efforts and draw on those results to improve whenever possible.

Content Strategy Checklist

Of course, not every company has the in-house resources necessary to undertake a fully realized content marketing strategy. In these instances, organizations may look to outside marketing or PR agencies to fill in the gaps or lead content marketing efforts. Under these circumstances, companies will get the best results by treating third-party agencies as full-fledged team members who are just as invested in the company’s success as its employees are.

 

“No Company is Too Small to Participate”

Just as Bill Gates predicted all those years ago, any company can benefit from a thoughtful content marketing strategy. In the age of content, your corporate voice is a vital component in relaying your brand message and value proposition to potential customers. Because without it, consumers will certainly get the information they’re seeking somewhere else.

Here’s How Public Relations Can Help Your Website

Here’s How Public Relations Can Help Your Website

A well-performing website can become one of a business’s most valuable assets. Not only does it inform the public about your goods and services, but it also captures search traffic that you can turn into revenue. That’s why improving your website’s search position using search engine optimization (SEO) techniques is a crucial component of your marketing efforts. This process doesn’t happen overnight, however. Instead, appeasing the search engine gods takes time, discipline and plenty of technical know-how.

I’ve written before about how public relations (PR) has evolved to meet the information age. Practitioners have moved beyond red carpets and spin doctoring to embrace digital practices that boost our client’s public profile in as many ways as possible. For example, SEO-savvy PR professionals can leverage the work they’re already doing to improve their client’s search position significantly.

 

PR Work Generates High-Quality Links & Mentions

Whenever I bring on a new client, one of the first things I do is check their backlink profile and perform a branded Google News search. For readers who might not be familiar with SEO terms, backlinks refer to incoming links from other websites. Google uses the amount and quality of these links and mentions as signals to judge a website’s importance and where it should rank on a search results page.

As I’m building this picture of my new client’s online presence, time and again, I find that the best-performing backlinks and media mentions come from the kind of organizations PR professionals interact with every day. Even if they’ve never run a formal PR campaign, media coverage is already benefiting their website because Google places a high value on the traffic media domains generate.

When organized PR work kicks in, PR professionals strategically target media organizations with high-quality links and mentions for their clients. When these regularly end up on media websites, PR campaigns become de-facto SEO machines. It’s here where you begin to see the potential power PR has to score big points with the all-powerful search engines and positively impact SEO over time. 

However, the search landscape is constantly changing. That’s why PRs must understand how links and mentions compare so they can maximize their outreach strategy.

 

Comparing Mentions and Link Types

Once, links were the most important goal for driving SEO growth, which led to a fraught relationship between PR and search. Back in the early days of SEO, so-called black hat practitioners tried to game the system by sending out low-quality press releases filled with spammy links. Aggregator sites would then blindly publish these releases — links and all — and violà, instant SEO juice. Google became wise to this tactic and eventually began penalizing websites that used this technique. 

As search engines become increasingly intelligent, the relationship between links and SEO value has changed. Soon, I believe mentions will become just as valuable as some link types, especially when combined with contextual keywords. This new paradigm may already exist on websites with higher domain authority. So with this in mind, how do PRs prioritize their link strategy?

 

No-Follow vs. Follow Links

One way Google addressed the link-spamming problem was by creating the no-follow link class, which is supposed to delineate between paid and naturally-earned opportunities. Simply put, a no-follow link is a website tag that tells search engines not to follow a particular link to the original website because it’s the result of a paid partnership. While no-follow links function the same way traditional links do, Google strips them of any SEO value. By contrast, Google views follow links as having more weight because they were earned rather than bought. That’s why they’re more impactful on search results. 

PR pros should pursue follow link opportunities first. However, if those are unavailable, a no-follow link or even an unlinked mention may still hold value on high authority sites. In fact, with schema markup and contextual relevance (meaning a brand mention, surrounded by context, e.g., leading digital PR agency Veracity says…), a mention without a link may be more valuable than a no-follow link. When you think this through, it makes sense. Because no-follow is supposed to indicate a paid link, a high-quality, unlinked mention is clearly an earned opportunity that should improve a site’s position in the digital landscape. 

That’s why PR professionals should write their blog posts, quotes or releases with brand names and contextual keywords in mind. With a bit of extra thought, PR pros can provide an additional SEO bump by writing for editors, readers and Google simultaneously — even without a link.

Search Industry Experts Weigh In

Listen to PR Talk episodes with SEO Consultant Michael Cottam and Moz & SparkToro Founder Rand Fishkin for more.

Author Links are Less Valuable

Some publications offer guest contributors an author link. These usually occur within the byline and not in the body copy. Generally speaking, Google does not value these links as highly as a follow link in the body copy. However, author links can be a valuable component of an ongoing PR campaign as it supports broader SEO goals. 

 

Links Behind Paywalls

Many businesses wonder if links that appear behind paywalls help their site’s search performance, especially as a growing number of media organizations move towards a paywall strategy. The answer is, it depends. If the site uses the correct markup, paywalls don’t matter in Google’s eyes. As long as Google can crawl the site and access its information, those links will show up in search results and benefit a site’s backlink profile. Most reputable media organizations, like city business journals, will mark up their sites correctly. Other publishers, like trade verticals, are less reliable.  

With all the link types and mention opportunities available, it’s essential to understand your target publication’s link policy before making your pitch. If all else is equal, and one publication offers a follow link while the other doesn’t, you can make the decisions that will benefit your client the most.

 

Planning a Media List with Links and Mentions in Mind

Understanding the link ecosystem becomes extremely important when planning a media list. Before I start my content creation or outreach efforts, I see if a publication even offers links. If they do, I look at the type of links they provide and where they typically provide them. The answers to these questions help me prioritize my outreach efforts in support of the overall strategy. 

Say, for example, that SEO is very important to my client. In that case, I’d prioritize publications that offer follow links in the body text over a publication that only offers author links. I’d probably even prioritize a branded mention on the right website over certain no-follow or author links. Conversely, if brand building is more important to my client, I might choose a publication with more esteem or a wider reach, even if the client doesn’t get the same SEO value in return.

 

Making the Most Out of Any Strategy

Every client has different goals when engaging a PR agency, and they often have nothing to do with SEO. But once a company starts doing real PR work, improved search results are often a really attractive added benefit. 

With the right knowledge, the right agency can use traditional PR techniques that accomplish the client’s primary business goals while utilizing every SEO opportunity that comes up along the way. That’s why digital PR is about so much more than fancy dinners and press conferences. Instead, it’s about delivering as much added value to their clients in as many ways as possible.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

FAQ

There are some questions that we are frequently asked. We plan to add to this post on a regular basis. If you have a question about public relations, digital PR or agency life, ask away!

What is PR?

PR stands for: Public Relations. In a general sense it is how an entity relates to the public. PR encompasses many marketing disciplines including media relations, internal communications, community relations, crisis communications, thought leadership and SEO PR.

What is Digital PR?

Digital PR or SEO PR, raises a client’s position online by targeting outlets and opportunities beyond conventional media. Some assume that Digital PR is just another term for link building. While this technique is certainly one tactic in the arsenal, that narrow view often ignores the holistic strategy directing a PR professional’s outreach efforts. When done well, Digital PR not only improves a company’s SEO presence but also increases brand mentions and exposure.

How Important Is Having the Right Contacts in PR?

As Amy says in her book A Modern Guide to Public Relations:

“If you happen to be searching for a PR vendor one day and a candidate can only brag about the relationships they have, run the other way. If they are bragging about their relationships, one would wonder if they do any actual work.”

Having contacts is nice, but having the right process and understanding what those contacts need is more important.

What is Thought Leadership?

Thought leadership is positioning companies and their teams as leaders to maintain or strengthen reputations. It can take many forms including guest articles, blog posts, awards programs, speaking engagements and press interviews. Thought leadership can also support other sales and marketing goals by increasing visibility, building and maintaining trust, and shortening sales cycles.

How Do I Become a Thought Leader?

The main way to become a thought leader is to share your expertise with others. How you share that knowledge can come in a variety of forms including speaking at events and conferences, writing articles, making media appearances, being featured on podcasts, tv or radio programs, etc.

Reason to strive to be a thought leader include:

  • It increases business visibility, 
  • Builds & maintains trust with your audience,
  • Shortens sales cycles,
  • Supports other marketing goals
How Do I Earn Links with PR?

Just doing good PR should earn you media mentions that may, or may not, include a link to your website. The reason you would want links is that historically links from high authority websites (like media sites) are a Google ranking factor. Earning those links (or even mentions without links) can go a long way in helping your SEO efforts. 

There are many ways to earn links through PR including prioritizing outlets that provide links, using content marketing strategies and tactics, and gaining event speaking engagements. Read more about Digital PR Tactics and listen to experts Michael Cottam and Rand Fishkin talk about the value of media links.

Should I Start a Podcast?

There are many pros and also quite a few cons to starting a podcast. Podcasts certainly are not a new communications channel, but they do seem to be having a bit of a renaissance with more listeners, shows and episodes than ever before. Of course you have to weigh the costs/benefits for yourselves, but here are a few things to think about: 

  • Does my target audience(s) listen to podcasts or can they be persuaded to listen?
  • How much time do we have to dedicate to creating a podcast?
  • Am I willing to commit to podcasting for an extended period of time?
  • What is the goal of my podcast?

Here are some of the pros and cons to consider:

Pros

  • Great way to fuel a content marketing strategy – not only will you have a podcast to share, but a good marketer will also publish a corresponding blog post, potentially a video version and audiograms, which is all social media content too.
  • Can be a more approachable medium than video and easier than writing
  • Helps establish the host (both an actual human host and the organization that is hosting or produce the podcast) as a thought leader

Cons

  • Time and money. Podcasts, or at least good podcasts, take some time and money. We shared a bit of insight on what it cost us at the end of What You Need to Start a Podcast.
  • Lost opportunities. As mentioned above, podcasts take time and money. Could those resources be used in a better way?

Our advice is to start by being a guest on other podcasts to see if the medium is a fit for you.

Should I Use a PR Wire?

Like most things in life…it depends. But most of the time our answer is no. Here are the circumstances that it may make sense to use a PR distribution service (which is a tools to get something on the Wire, see PR dictionary):

  • You are required to make the news public for SEC (or other entity) requirements.
  • You have really BIG news that may actually get picked up
  • You might get lucky

See Who Needs PR Distribution for more.

How Do I Measure the Success of PR?

The first key to measuring success is understanding what you want to measure. Start with your ultimate business goals and see how closely you can get to understanding the key performance indicators (KPIs) that PR impacts.

Classic PR placement measurements like impressions, share of voice, calculated publicity value, etc. are good at understanding the reach of your efforts and can be used as a comparison to other PR and marketing work.

However, to really understand the impact of PR you must dig deeper. Using digital marketing KPIs like unique visitors/users, traffic to specific pages or via tracking URLs, share of search traffic/results, lead generation and ultimately sales will help you get closer to understanding the impact of public relations. 

This often takes extra work and may need to involve leadership and/or finance teams. Listen to the PR Talk podcast episode Stakeholder Engagement with Ira Gostin for more.

How Much Does PR Cost?

Another answer where it depends comes to mind…however that wouldn’t be very helpful, so here are some scenarios:

$9.99 – you can buy A Modern Guide to Public Relations and do it yourself (really $9.99 plus your time)

$50-$175/hour – freelance rates vary significantly and certainly go higher than $175, but if you are looking to pay a professional hourly, I’d expect them to be at least $100/hour.

$2,500 – $10,000 – for a local PR project

$25,000+ for a national PR project

$1,500 – $3,000 per month for a freelancer

$2,500 – $5,000 for a small firm

$5,000 – $10,000 per month for a boutique or medium-sized firm

$10,000+ per month for a bigger firm

*Of course these are just guidelines that I have seen over the years, there are all sorts of people, firms and partnerships.

Do You Have a Question?