In the evolving world of strategic communications, PR practitioners are constantly faced with new challenges as well as new opportunities. Being aware of growing trends and remaining adept at the latest methods are essential for effectively reaching target audiences.

An important and often untapped resource today is utilizing Search Engine Optimization (SEO) as a public relations tool. The website Search Engine Watch recently published an outstanding article on how the two complementary practices can greatly increase brand visibility and drive engagement. Though some in the PR field are hesitant to incorporate these tactics, early adopters are pioneering a new course for the industry and achieving robust results.

Strategic link building greatly enhances the value of a press release or any other online distribution. Strong SEO will not only drive traffic to your site from the original article, but any additional coverage generated will often compound the results by producing additional click-throughs and increasing search engine rankings.

Similarly, public relations’ focus on compelling storytelling and cultivating media relationships can be effectively harnessed in SEO efforts. Current content which is relevant to news organizations will generate higher interest and thus, improved search results. Providing press contacts with valuable information that is actually of interest to them helps solidify relationships.

Perhaps one of the greatest advantages of utilizing SEO as part of a PR campaign is that search engine links provide easily-found, quantitative results. This tangible evidence of success is often hard to come by in public relations work and can be very valuable when helping clients understand the return on investment that they are receiving from their PR efforts.

At Red Banyan Group, we utilize SEO as a part of nearly all of our client campaigns. Building a strong presence online is critical to boosting credibility, targeting media and developing a loyal following. We also help many of our crisis communications clients improve their personal and/or business images through strategic, effective SEO techniques.

SEO alone can never replace the need for PR efforts, but utilizing it as a component of an integrated communications plan strengthens the power of PR. Red Banyan Group stays abreast of the latest SEO tactics so that we can continue to provide clients with cutting-edge, optimal communications campaigns –rooted in strategy.