How to INCREASE your brand awareness without increasing your budget

When the economy worsens it seems companies, pr clients as well, always cut back on everything, and that includes advertising. If you want to increase your brand awareness without increasing your ad budget–and actually reduce your budget, then read on. This approach works great for local pr clients and national pr clients.

In today’s tough economic times, the companies that will survive are the ones who continue increase brand awarenesstheir marketing and brand awareness. You can do this by spending less money than your current ad budget! How? With a creative publicity campaign. Being a publicity professional since 1980, I recommend starting an aggressive local publicity campaign. This should be a series of publicity releases and submission of articles to the media, etc. Then continue with a social media network campaign and a web marketing/publicity campaign. Those are the main elements. To be successful during these difficult times, you need to be consistent. Other things smart publicity professionals would recommend would be your blog site. Start making your blogs work closely with your web site.

Did you realize that I haven’t said to “spend any media money”? Rather than spending media money (print, TV, radio, banners, keywords), allocate 50% of your advertising budget for publicity. Don’t get caught up in buying keywords, or key phrases either. The money you allocate to the local publicity or regional publicity campaign will generate more awareness than the media budget. That’s smart marketing. Impelmenting this will get your pr clients web site listed in all the major search engines. And in return that will create traffic and increase sales. Knowing how to put this all together could be a challenge. In the long run, even if you hire a professional publicity company, like Carson Marketing, Inc., the costs will be much, much less than the media money you would spend just to get “limited” awareness. A well-designed publicity campaign will garner many months of awareness while building your brand. Then as the economy improves, your company will be the one customers will remember and continue purchasing from.

Web Traffic, How To Get More

A lot of companies are offering solutions to increase web traffic, but which one is right for your company?

Today all companies need to have a web site presence. Not just a single page, but someting that is attractive, informative and entertaining. But that alone isn’t going to bring you customers. What you need to do is think about PR Marketing Strategies. Once your web site was built, you then were told; a) is it “optimized”?, b) do you have the right “keywords, key phrases“?, c) and did you place the right “titles” in your pages?, d) did you submit your site to the seo’s?

Those questions alone makes you wonder what to do next. Then you come across a bunch of other people saying that you need to “market” your web site. Especially if you build an eCommerce web site which needs marketing strategies that will increase web traffic.

So what are the answers to having a successful eCommerce, or traditional web site? This is not a single answer solution. You should have an on-going web marketing plan. It needs to consist of a solid PR marketing stratey that includes all of the above mentions items, keywords, keyphrases, titles, and most important, links to revelevant sites.

Incorporating PR marketing strategies can build your company’s image, increase awareness and above all increase traffic to your web site. Our company has been making great things happen for our clients since 1980. We understand what PR marketing strategies are about. We know that publicity is an important key to a successful campaign. And we belive that a “business blog site” is an important element to making your buisness a success.

Keywords as a Publicity Tool

Get Your Releases Noticed

Keywords and key phrasesPublicity writing can be a challenge when you are trying to write several press releases for the same client without repeating the same phrases that we all tend to use in our writing styles.

So what is the answer to this writing pattern? Try using a keyword search tool.

The Internet has opened up a vast amount of tools for all of the publicity and advertising industries. The problem is not everyone sees or really understands how to apply these great tools to their everyday business activities. For example, I just mentioned that publicity writers should use keyword search tools to make their press releases, articles more targeted to the pr client’s market.

PR Clients want to know that when a press release is submitted, it gets published and noticed. One way to help this process along, is by inserting the different phrases and keywords that you might not have considered.

Why use these keywords and phrases? For a lot of reasons! One of the most important reasons– your release on the internet will get higher rankings and help your PR Clients web site rank higher as well.

Reporters, when searching for specific topics, will find your release easier and faster because of the keywords you inserted.

There are a lot of keyword tools, such as Overture, Wordtracker among many others. Visit one of these keyword search tools, try it and I can assure you that words and phrases will appear that you probably didn’t think about before.

One more important point. The number next to these keywords are the number of people who typed that word or phrase into a search engine. That makes these tools more valuable when writing.

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Building More Quality Traffic

Web Marketing and Publicity

What? You still think those people in the IT department are not part of the overall publicity program? If you cannot work with your web marketing staff, or outside source (if you don’t do this in-house), then you’re work on that publicity campaign can have little impact.

Meta Tags and KeywordsThe word that still means success is TEAM. Working together can generate a lot of positive results. Especially when any campaign directs pr clients, customers, or B2B companies to visit your web site. Hey, if all the publicity you’re doing doesn’t include the web address then you’re missing out.

Ok, let’s get to building traffic.

As we all know, Google and Yahoo as well as MSN have taken over the search world. They are also changing how search works. By knowing some of these tips, pr people can better understand the mysterious world of search to improve their press releases, articles, and even how to find things on the net.

An important element now is TAGS. Yes, these are the same tags that were once considered a few years ago as a way into the hearts of the search engines. These were the metatags, title, tags, etc. But unlike they were before; there are new twists to making tags more successful. Understanding optimization and knowing how this new system is working, is very important in SEO marketing for web sites.

Let me give you a few tips that I read about the NEW Yahoo My Web. For example:

  • You can now share bookmarks
  • Tagging images. This is great for pr stuff and bloggers

Publicity agencies and pr people as well as pr clients now need to get more serious about optimization. It is how companies’ web sites will survive in the next couple of years.

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How Can Optimizing Be Bad?

Know what you are doing first

optimizing web sitesEveryone who builds a web site claims to know optimizing. The same is true about those small startups saying they can get you listed at the top of SE’s (Search Engines). How is this relating to publicity? Because “Publicity is Everywhere!” If you direct the media to your site, but they forget the URL, they probably will type specific keywords in the SE to locate the web site.

Ok, first let me say not all these companies are out to make a fast buck. But it appears that most of them are selling software or just doing a blast listing to all the SE’s out there. How can these really help? Well, you won’t see any progress for weeks, maybe a couple of months at best. That’s how they get your money and then you just shake off that bad experience when nothing happens and your still listed 348 on Google, or Yahoo.

Web Site Optimization is more than placing a bunch of keywords into the HTML of your site. It isn’t the key phrase either. Because if you do this incorrectly, the search engines will pass you by!

The keywords you selected…how did you find them? If these are the most popular, then you are going to get zero traffic for a long time. Knowing which are the best keywords and what people are using is completely different. Plus, using multiple words can be even more productive and generate traffic. Ok, stop for a moment. Is traffic what you want? I hope not. Because I can get you thousands of people a month easily, but they won’t be qualified to purchase your products or services.

Qualified buyers are what you need. The number of visitors is important, if they are qualified. Keep that in perspective. We can give you the optimization to get listed at the top of Google, Yahoo and MSN among other search engines.

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Web Site Blogging

Keep a daily blog and publicity will increase

If you are interested in getting more visible, then you need to add a blog site to your publicity campaign. It is true that most anyone in your company can probably write the blogs on a daily basis, but it is the use of the correct wording and use of keywords that make a business blog productive.

Not everyone can write a short novel, or a radio commercial, or a sales brochure. Each of these examples requires a different writing talent. A publicity pro can write successful press releases and articles for publication, but they might not be a good copywriter for brochures or ads.

But a good publicity writer can adapt easily to writing blogs than an advertising copywriter. Why? The reason is simple. Publicity writers are not writing text for people to buy, but rather to act upon. Therefore, their style is more informative in their writing. That’s what blogs (for business) are about. Getting the information in front of readers who will react more to a blog than an ad.

Knowing how to write a blog is only one aspect of a good blog site. Now you need to know how to use the site to gain traffic and visibility. This requires learning how to make links, use photos and inserting keywords into your text and in what order. Once you begin using blogs, it will open more opportunities for your company, or your pr clients.

So I again recommend that pr clients, publicity firms look into the serious positive effects that blog sites can offer.

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Targeting Your Publicity Release

How to use the Internet wisely

Writing a press release today is not the same as it was several years ago. The Internet has changed how we treat these releases and the words we use. Public Relations firms and pr clients have been quickly learning how to make a press release meet the demand of the new technology.

Just as your web site needs to be optimized, it is just as important that each press release you distribute be optimized when submitting to the online news media. The use of keywords and how they are placed within the text body is critical. Using too many keywords, or phrases will destroy your objective.

The purpose to optimizing press releases and story’s that you are pitching is to help your web site gain higher ranking and position with the search engines.  In addition to using the keywords, you need to include your company’s web address. That may seem logical, and most pr firms and clients do include that information.  Want to make your release more worthy? Then don’t only list the URL of the web site, but have a link be directed to a specific page that discusses the product or service of that press release.

This will help reporters, or other media people collect more information quickly than searching for it on your home page.

When you combine the technology of today, using search engines, and traditional writing for press releases, you can increase your company’s visibility and traffic. It is best to work with a company that knows how to optimize a press release than trying to learn by trial and error.

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Link Your Site Before You Launch It

How to generate traffic

Sometimes it is difficult to explain to pr clients how to get more traffic to a company’s web site in these short blogs. The reason is that it takes more than just a few keywords or phrases embedded into the HTML codes. It requires a plan to get fully indexed and recognized by search engines (SEO).

For those of you who understand the behind-the-scenes, and for those who have a fair knowledge of web marketing, then this is for you.

Before launching your new web site, or your updated site, you need to make sure the following has been completed.

  • First, make sure your domain name is registered, or renewed
  • Review your home page and the other key pages, these could be up to 5 or 6 different pages
  • Make links to your page with other high ranking pages that are already indexed. This will give your site immediate recognition by the search engines
  • Develop a PR campaign with releases on your site. These can be releases that have been distributed to the media
  • START A BLOG SITE! Not that I haven’t said this a few times before, but a blog site with your company web site will build high rankings with search bots as they crawl the different sites and your links
  • Make sure you write articles that are relevant about your company, the products or services you offer. Write articles about topics that you can later submit to other Ezines

One last item for this blog. Get links from other indexed sites to your company site. That completes the cycle.

If you need help with web marketing, give us a call.

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Write Press Releases With Links

Build your image with SEO’s

Writing a press release is one part of building visibility with the media. Now you need to use the power of the Internet. Make the press release relevant to your site.

To do this, you need to add links that are relevant to your site and to the names of companies or people that are mentioned in the press release.

Although there is a mix of opinions about using links with press releases, it will add a lot of power to your visibility. How? Because the more relevant links you have, the better your position will be when people type keywords to find a product or company that offers what you do.

Don’t go wild and place a dozen links in the body of the text. This will be both annoying to the reader and it is a red flag to SEO’s, because they (the search engine spiders) think you are trying to fool them with relevant links.

Keep the text simple, yet informative, just like any press release or story you want published. Make it a point to include keywords that are in your web site. Again, be careful to not make the article or press release sound like a sales pitch. That will just get you lower on everyone’s list.

Read my blog about “Public Relations Needs Web Marketing”. It provides a few tips on how the two, publicity and web marketing, work best when you make it a team effort.

As you write releases in this manner more often, you will begin to see the value and power it has.

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Public Relations Needs Web Marketing

Get more traffic using these tools

No matter what your clients or pr agency says, you cannot have a successful pr campaign if your web site isn’t visible to the search engines.

So what does all this mean? By working with your pr staff, or your publicity agency, and the marketing people and the web IT department, you will see positive results.

Now let’s talk briefly about your web marketing. Maybe you do not have a web marketing or IT department, or your web designer doesn’t do marketing for web sites. No matter what your situation is, start building links to your web site. First, let me remind you that the site needs to be optimized for any site to gain credibility and ranking. If you are not sure how to optimize the site, contact me and I will give you a FREE analysis of your site’s optimization.

In previous blogs, I have addressed the two types of links. They are:

  • ONE WAY links. This is when you ask someone to have him or her place a link to your site on his or her site.
  • RECIPROCAL links. These are the type of links that you exchange with another relevant web site. Basically, you are linking to each other’s site.

Remember that it is always best to link to a high-ranking web site. And it is more critical to link to a site that is relevant to your industry. If not, then you are defeating the process and the search engines will penalize your site.

Some other web marketing tips:

1- Do Not link to too many sites too fast. For example, Google wants to see a slow progression of links built

2- Try to get about 5 or 6 new links per day

3- Make sure your keywords are relevant and placed into the text (body) of your message and into your title pages

If you want to learn more, contact me.

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