The PR Guru

March 11, 2011

10 Reasons to use PR, #5

Over the past few weeks we’ve discussed various reasons for doing your own PR.

Here they are if you need a recap:
1. Spread your marketing investment
2. Gain third party endorsements
3. Become the industry expert
4. Reach the largest possible audience

To follow on from those, we have handed over our blog to a good friend of ours this week – Peter Brough of Cybernautix, the search engine optimisation specialists.

As well as generating coverage in offline media, namely newspapers, magazines and broadcasting, you can also use press releases to improve your online presence. And one of the major benefits of that is the boost it will give to your performance in the search engine rankings.

So reason #5 is this: GET TO THE TOP OF GOOGLE. Take it away Pete!

If you have ever wondered how websites are found easily at the top of search rankings for words associated with their services or products then here’s your answer: Search Engine Optimisation.

Google and other search engines want the most relevant websites at the top to deliver the best experience to their users. The ranking is decided by a sophisticated calculation and SEO aims to understand this and ‘tunes’ a website to get the strongest, and most relevant, result in the algorithm.

It can be distilled down into three distinct areas, all of which are critical to success.

The first, and most important factor is: keywords. These are the terms people are using to search out your services, and must be carefully researched, because although you might know your message very well, it might not exactly correspond to how most people would look for it. Proper keyword research is essential to any SEO activity.

The second stage is to integrate these keywords into your press release. As you will be sending your release to lots of websites, as well as posting it on your own, using your keywords will help you rank highly on Google et al.

Stage three is showing the search engine that you are an important and recognized website by having links from other websites to yours. This is one of the most overlooked phases, yet it is critical to success.

One very good way of creating back links to your website is by writing press releases and submitting them to online PR distribution sites, such as i-newswire, PR Log and PR Fire. In the press release you can usually include a link, or links, back to your website as a point of reference and to improve your ranking you should use sites that do allow links.

The press release should be written naturally so editors will approve your article. It can be made more effective by using headings, and bold and/or italicized writing to emphasize important points (especially those including your keywords).

This works because part of Google’s algorithm is determining the relevancy of text to a link.

If the text is very relevant to the outgoing link then it will have a higher impact. If the link points to a page on your website that is also optimized for that particular keyword then you have the highest relevancy and have created a strong link that will improve your ranking on that keyword.

If you are writing your own press release , make it as interesting and well-written as possible, because journalists monitor press release distribution sites and will often pick up stories from them. It may also be copied around other PR websites, further circulating your link and helping to drive your website up the rankings naturally.

Thanks Pete! For more information on SEO, visit the Cybernautix website: www.cybernautix.co.uk They can help you research the most popular keywords in your field, and build those all-important back links from other sites. And they are also pretty good at web design!

We have commissioned Cybernautix to do our SEO work over the next few months, so keep an eye open for the Richard Swancott Associates website appearing on page one of Google very soon!

December 10, 2010

Manchester United player Patrice Evra puts his foot in it, labelling Arsenal a training ground, whilst Westboro Baptist Church gets heavily shunned for picketing Elizabeth Edwards’ funeral

Manchester United full-back Patrice Evra has claimed that Arsenal’s lack of trophies means it is no more than a training ground.

He sure knows how to start a riot….

The two sides will play at Old Trafford on Monday, with Arsenal having not won any significant honour since the FA Cup in 2005 when they beat United on penalties.

That particular game was 0-0 after 120 minutes of play, and the penalties saw Patrick Vieira score the winning goal – in what was to be his last kick of the ball.

Arsene Wenger’s men are yet to win some silverware, prompting the Frenchman to add more emphasis on the League Cup this term.

Ahead of the Premier League game between the two sides, Evra told French TV channel Canal+: “The Red Devils will enjoy playing against an attacking team, as teams have been known in the past to set out to earn a point against them.

However, Evra insisted that United still remain a better side than their opponents as they are not only good at playing positive football, but can also employ a physical style of play when necessary.

In other news, members of the Westboro Baptist Church, known for its radical stance against homosexuality and the war in Iraq, said it will picket Elizabeth Edwards’ funeral in North Carolina.

Edwards, the estranged wife of Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards, died on Tuesday after battling breast cancer.

According to the Church’s press release, members of the Kansas-based congregation are planning to gather at 12:15pm to rally against Edwards for issues relating to her personal life deemed offensive by the church.

The Church is already monitored by anti-hate groups such as the Anti-Defamation league and the Southern Poverty Law Center because it is known for its extremist opposition against homosexuals, Jews and other groups.

Westboro members often hold protests against the war in Iraq, many at funerals held for U.S. service members.

He describes himself as an old-time gospel preacher who says, “You can’t preach the Bible without preaching the hatred of God.”

October 11, 2010

David Johnson

The speaker at next Monday’s coaching programme is David Johnson, from The Sentinel – Staffordshire’s daily newspaper.

He’ll be focusing on how to get your business into The Sentinel’s business section.

As the business editor for the paper and business supplements, there is nobody better qualified to speak on the subject.

David has been working as business editor for The Sentinel since 2007 and since then has been in charge of sifting through all the press releases that are sent to them – to see which ones can be used.

He will be able to tell you what they don’t want from a press release.

Online reporter Alison Kenney has written some tips for making a press release stand out from the crowd, which might give you all some idea as to what to expect from our session – although we go through much more in the two hour slot:

A “quote, from a third-party, can make your news stand out… Readers are interested in who is being quoted and in what they are saying… If it’s a customer or partner endorsing you or product, their quote can explain the unique reason they like you or, better yet, quantify the success they’ve had with your help.”

“Adding “spin” or context can help sell your story to the media. In this case, think like an editor. Why would a writer be interested in your news? If it’s not immediately obvious, you may need to broaden your story’s appeal by explaining how it impacts consumers, the industry, the local region, etc.”

David will be using his expertise to show you how to:

•write a press release that will stand out from the many he gets each day
•find a news story that fits into what he normally publishes
•increase your chances of getting business through the newspaper and its supplements
And all for just £60 + VAT!

To book your place, e-mail richard@richardswancottassociates.co.uk.

April 15, 2010

VIDEO – what to expect on our workshops

Filed under: Uncategorized — richardswancott @ 2:22 pm
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You may have heard me mention our PR workshops and coaching programme on here (just a few times!).

We have some more coming up at the end of April/beginning of May – dates and venues are available at our website.

But rather than going on again about the kind of things people learn (how to write a press release, where to send it, and how to bring in leads through a PR campaign), I thought I’d post a nice little video which says it all.

It’s actually a video of the Twitter workshop we hosted on March 22, but our PR workshops follow a similar format, with some networking to begin with, followed by me talking for a bit, and then a press release writing session.

Anyway, have a look here and give me a shout if you need more info:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mfmU-ZsknIw

Richard

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