Online PR

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  • February 16, 2009

Online PR is something that we’ve been (unknowingly) offering for a few years under various different names. Social media marketing, social media optimisation, blog marketing are all names we’ve used to describe what we have been offering but moving forwards these will all be encompassed under the label of online PR for one simple reason.

Clients understand what it means.

Most companies have worked with a PR agency before, if they haven’t then it’s likely they are either a small business or have a good understanding of PR themselves. Either way it’s much better to use a phrase people understand than to confuse potential clients with jargon about social media.

So what exactly is online PR and what does an online PR offering from somebody like Branded3 look like?

Essentially online PR boils down to 5 set services:

Market Research

Finding out which websites are discussing subjects related to your brand, industry and your competitors.
Examples include forums, social networks (Facebook/Myspace), blogs & news sites, microblogs (Twitter)


Establishing relationships with the decision makers and content creators of the target websites and understanding what they talk about, who they link to & why.


Creating the sort of content that the influencers at the target websites will enjoy and hopefully write about or link to from their websites.


Branching out from targeting websites & targeting target audiences directly. Where are the target audience spending time online? Which sites are they visiting and how can we get featured on those sites too?


Monitoring the web for brand names, competitor & keyword mentions on all types of websites. Actioning a quick response strategy to handle positive or negative press or sudden changes in the industry.

The following are services which we certainly do not offer as part of an online PR package

Article submission & syndication
Unless the article is being published on a leading authority in a clients industry then article submissions are not part of online PR. Perhaps they might help for SEO but that is a separate subject.

Optimised copy or keyword rich press releases
Press releases need to be written by somebody skilled in the art of press release writing. Press releases should not be used to help with search engine optimisation unless that is the primary goal of the campaign.

Syndication statistics
If you press release was syndicated on 6 million websites that would sound quite impressive wouldn’t it? Syndication statistics are useless – the only figures that matter are the number of people who read the press release and the number who visited your website as a result.

What’s your online PR strategy?

Patrick Altoft

About Patrick Altoft

Patrick is the Director of Strategy at Branded3 and has spent the last 11 years working on the SEO strategies of some of the UK's largest brands. Patrick’s SEO knowledge and experience is highly regarded by many, and he’s regularly invited to speak at the world’s biggest search conferences and events.

  • Jonk

    This sounds bone-crushingly lame but my tactic on some websites has been leaving tons of comments on blogs of journalists in the hope they will notice me. Up to this point, not that successful.

    However, I made another website to protest a decision by a sporting authority in my city, emailed the Press Release to a few journos (maybe 10, 12) and with a little bit of nudging along it went crazy in my country, completely coating the media, and ended up making the news in 8 countries including a couple of newspapers in yours, Patrick. However I guess that’s a different kettle of fish because I actually went off and e-mailed the journos? And of course the topic of the website was non-commercial.

  • David King

    I agree… I think that relationships are very important… this is a big one!

    that’s why i love twitter, you can build relationships and network super fast!

    thanks for the great post!

  • Mick Dickinson

    Twitter is getting me reasonable traffic to my blog. Content syndication is not working for me. I am using PressReleasePoint and wonder if anyone has better recomendations. Cheers, Mick

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