Dave Naylor is well-known in the UK as experienced search marketer. Below, we discuss the marriage of SEO and PR and how it can work for your brand. Dave is speaking at our upcoming conference, SEJ Summit London, which is well be held on May 12.
If you can make it, we still have FREE tickets available for this London marketing event, courtesy of our partner, Searchmetrics. Request an invite today!
Searchmetrics helps your prospects and customers spend less time searching and more time buying. We call it search experience optimization.
1. You have been in the SEO field for over 17 years and have seen the field through many evolutions. Obviously content is a big deal right now, but what is the next major shift or focus that you expect?
That is the key to SEO and it always has been to constantly evolve, which is what we have been doing as an agency for the last 12 years, and what I did before I set up Bronco. Content is a big deal right now but it has been for the last few years since Panda was first rolled out, which really started to target duplicate and weak content. Your link profile is of equal importance, and we have seen many websites that have come to us needing help with severe penalties caused by poor link building in the past. Google is still on the hunt for poor quality link profiles, but we can see it in the SERPs that these bad practices are still working in some sectors, so Google still has a lot of work to do.
The thing is, people still want cheap and fast results, but this will eventually catch up with you. What we have seen is more emphasis needed on the technical side of SEO, making sure your site structure is good all the way through the coding, as simple things will trip up your rankings. We spend some time every day in the clients WebmasterTools accounts checking for errors and any glimpses of an issue.
2. What do you think are the biggest misconceptions clients have about what SEO is and what it can do to grow their business?
Often people come to Bronco after going to various bigger agencies getting the sales pitches with promises of top rankings. This is where the misconceptions come in about good SEO and the timescales. We are always very honest with potential clients and will give them a realistic picture of what they can achieve. We know that Google favors big, so depending what sector you are wanting to compete in there are different tactics needed. Sometimes the SEO work starts with actually building a brand.
3. The SEJ Summit presentation you are giving is titled: “Partnering PR and SEO for Brand Marketing Success.” What are the top benefits of partnering those disciplines?
In this current era of SEO we have moved into the PR space as a way to help bring coverage to clients and aid them in becoming a brand. Google wants to rank brands, and you need people not just finding you for keywords but coming directly to your website, looking for you. PR, if it is done correctly, with an SEO angle, can bring good rewards for the equity of the site.
Primarily as an SEO you want to attract conversation about your products and service which will enhance your brand position and bring in additional equity into the site. This falls neatly in with the need for a really good SEO campaign to make sure your website structure is enhanced and optimized, and to work on improving and optimising your overall link profile.
4. How do you think partnering PR and SEO works differently for big brands and smaller businesses?
All businesses can work on their own PR performance no matter what their size. There are different size media outlets that will pick up on your stories and provide you the coverage that is helpful. The key to the success is the hard work that needs to take place in the planning and preparation of your PR. There is no quick or easy solution to getting press coverage, and gone are the days of using PR syndication websites, so each release needs to be perfected for your target audience. Often smaller business are better at PR than the bigger brands as they can be more agile, daring, and reactive to topical news and views.
5. Many people think PR is no longer effective. Can you give us your top reason why PR is still effective in the digital age?
Whether PR is effective is all dependant on how it is carried out and what its purpose is. In a digital age with people finding information on such a variety of devices and platforms, you need to be able to place your brand in front of your potential customers in many different ways.
Through PR you can interact with your audience as well as set the tone and the personality of the company. PR is only one way in the digital age to reach your audience and has to be done in conjunction with traditional SEO, social media, reputation management, paid advertising, as well as offline marketing.
Bonus Question: Who has been most influential in your career?
I would have to say my wife, Becky Naylor. If you can live and work with someone 24/7 for 19 years and not kill each other, you will be influenced!
Thanks for the insight into combining search and public relations, Dave. Can’t wait to hear your talk at SEJ Summit London!
Don’t forget, you can request your free ticket for our London marketing conference, happening on May 12th at The Ham Yard. You can also come see us in Silicon Valley, NYC, and Atlanta later this year.
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