Relevance’s Latest Insights
Staying relevant isn’t easy. We practice what we preach by jam-packing our blog with helpful insights. We keep our readers up to date and in the know with insights about PR, SEO, and content marketing. Does our content make the cut? Give our latest posts a read and let us know:
Frequently Asked Questions
We know our space can be complex. Don’t be afraid to reach out if your question isn’t covered here:
Industry ownership is about more than market share. How, when, and where current and potential customers look to your brand online is at least as important.
When someone searches a question relevant to you, does your company’s site show up? If it does, how well does your content speak to their needs? Do they see you mentioned in relevant, authoritative sites, signaling that they can trust your brand?
Industry thought leaders are not established overnight. Proving your authority to Google takes time. At Relevance, we understand that content strategy is about playing the long game: sharing expertise often, on- and off-site, and in authentic, engaging ways.
If it’s what you want, we’ll write you a killer press release. But we’d much rather get your brand mentioned in a relevant digital publication.
Remember, PR stands for “public relations.” The public is not scouring PR sites, just waiting for the word that an executive they’ve never heard of is retiring.
Readers care about stories that are relevant to them. They want to know, for example, what companies are doing to promote corporate social responsibility. They’re looking for insights on the latest technologies and trends, replete with takeaways they can actually put into practice.
Forget “news” that your customers couldn’t care less about. Your brand has big ideas. Let us share them in a way that actually contributes to your content strategy.
Ask the typical SEO agency what success looks like, and they’ll tell you it’s about ranking for keywords relevant to your brand and increasing traffic to your site.
Although those things are important, they’re not the whole story. These days, Google looks at more than terms and links to determine how to rank a web page.
High-quantity traffic doesn’t always equal high-quality traffic. That’s why we take a fine-tooth comb to your entire content ecosystem, looking for gaps as well as low-hanging fruit in your brand’s content strategy.
Through it all, we put a premium on relationships. We think of publication editors, contributors, and entrepreneurs as friends, not just as nodes in our network. Our connections make it possible for us to secure backlinks to diverse and high-authority sites.
Get to know us. We think you’ll agree that we’re a good kind of different.
According to some inbound marketers, SEO and digital PR are top-of-the-funnel tactics. But if you ask us, they have a role to play every step of the way.
These days, search is the stepping-off point throughout the funnel. Yes, people plug their problems into Google. But where do they begin researching solutions to their problem? Google. How do they decide on a product or service that solves that problem? Google.
Regardless where someone is in their buying journey or what terms they search, Google ranks results by how relevant they are. Sometimes, those results are on branded sites; in other cases, they’re found in third-party publications.
Maintaining a positive, helpful presence in both spaces is, in our view, the key to digital PR. Today’s consumers relate to brands through the content they consume.
While that content can encourage a sale, being outright promotional is not a smart strategy. The best content builds trust. Through meaningful advice, it prepares readers to make a purchase. Then, when they’re finally ready to buy, your brand is just a click away.
From start to sale and back again, SEO and digital PR keep your brand top of search, top of mind, and top of the shopping list.
Success means different things to different people. To us, it means achieving our clients’ goals on time and on budget. Most clients come to us with one, two, or all three of the following goals: owning certain search terms, building brand credibility, or pushing back on content that paints them in a less-than-perfect light. Relevance believes results should be measured in hard numbers. Some of those goals, however, are easier to put data to than others. Owning search terms is simple: How does your brand rank in Google for each keyword? How many places has it risen over what timeframe? And what impact do those improvements have on your organic traffic? Pushing back on negative press is also easy to measure: How far has the undesirable content fallen in search rankings? Where are more positive mentions ranking? Brand credibility is more difficult to quantify. Here, we need your help. We can count up the number of press mentions we land for you. But what about organic outreach to your marketing team? How robust and positive is the conversation about your brand on social media? These days, the online narrative is key. It dictates how frequently you receive earned media opportunities, how potential investors view your brand, and what talent decides to throw their hat in the ring. None of the best outcomes of brand credibility are easy to predict or measure in a dashboard. They might occur three times in a day — and then not for the next two weeks. Rest assured, candidates and investors do read your content. But rarely do they say things like “I decided to apply because I read your insights in Forbes.” Publishing content consistently makes those events more likely, even if they’re difficult to quantify. Regardless of your goal, there’s no one metric of success. As is true everywhere in marketing, holistic, ongoing measurement provides the truest sense of performance.
At Relevance, we believe every brand has room to improve its search and content strategies. But there are a few things we look for when determining whether a potential client is in our “sweet spot.” Although it might sound obvious, our clients need a website. First, search traffic needs a destination. Second, the contributors and editors we work with tend to be skeptical of clients with no web presence. We’re not just talking about any old website, though. Our most successful clients have robust, relevant onsite content (usually in the form of a blog or guide). Not quite there yet? No problem. Our team can put together a strategy that includes research and development of on-site as well as off-site content. Why is relevant blog content so important? Imagine a data security company that publishes only lifestyle content. Most readers and publication editors — not to mention Google’s algorithm — wouldn’t consider it credible. Links or references to it may be stripped or disregarded. Beyond that, we look for vision alignment with those we work with: clients who understand that SEO is a marathon, not a sprint, and are willing to stick with us through that race. Brands and their leaders who want to influence and shape the trajectory of their industry. People doing good work and pouring positive energy into the universe. Finally, we ask that our clients appoint a responsive point of contact. Our account managers work closely with our clients’ marketing teams. They can’t do that if their emails are getting lost in the void or their calls are going unanswered.
At Relevance, we consider a structurally sound website the cost of admission for a custom SEO strategy. Why? Because an insecure, technically weak website won’t rise in search, no matter how many high-authority backlinks it receives. Google uses search penalties to encourage all sites to provide a safer, more user-friendly experience. You can think about this like investing in a home with a bad foundation: Remodeling a structure that’s about to collapse simply is not a good use of resources. Repair the foundation first, and then worry about cosmetic concerns. If we see cracks in the foundation, a technical audit will be the first tactic we recommend. Let’s say you have a website — a technically correct one — and a smart, responsive marketing team. We’re ready to get to work, but we’ll need your help with a couple of extra things to execute a custom SEO strategy. Although we can see some keyword and traffic data on our own, the best insights can only be gleaned from your analytics platform. Most Relevance clients use Google Search Console or Conductor. We ask that you give your account team access for a full picture of how our work is impacting your site’s search performance. Finally, we prefer SEO clients who know their target keywords and top-converting content. While we can research and evaluate keywords that are relevant to your brand and customers, we need you to tell us how the rubber meets the road. What terms do your customers tend to search before they buy? Chances are, those are the keywords we’ll want to target together.
At Relevance, we focus on executing our clients’ deliverables. Some clients choose to track web traffic and conversions with their own tools. If you do, beware that this isn’t an exact science. PR placements, no matter how relevant to your business or how strong the mention, cannot be easily tied to specific sales. Some marketers measure the ROI of PR by media impressions, the number of media placements secured, or by message pull-through. The reality, however, is that PR placements are brand investments that make certain events more likely. An investor may decide to pull the trigger based on a CEO’s thought leadership. A future employee might decide to apply based on a mention’s company culture implications. Those sorts of events have six-figure potential to your brand. But when or how frequently they occur can’t be predicted by any one metric. PR placements are about rowing in the right direction. They work best when integrated into your other marketing efforts. A brand that keeps appearing in the right channels, with the right messaging, that leverages each opportunity throughout its sales funnel is bound to reap the benefits. For a better understanding of what those look like, check out our case studies. Click on the FAQ below to learn more about how to squeeze the most value out of your PR placements.]
PR content can provide a lot of value to your brand: Generate third-party credibility. Safely boost your search rankings. Improve your investor relationships. Attract top talent to your company.
But unlike SEO content, which should automatically be indexed by Google, PR placements require some work from you. Otherwise, they’ll become irrelevant as soon as they fall off the target site’s homepage.
One of our strategic advisors, John Hall, wrote about this in Forbes. Aside from being a good client — you know, showing up to meetings and treating your account manager well — it’s important to:
Amplify great content.
Content does not go viral “just because.” A few “seed” shares — perhaps from your family members or employees — can make all the difference. Investing in paid search and reaching out to your partners with the piece are also smart ideas.
Build a content base.
PR content cues the reader to look deeper into the brands featured within it. If they can’t find anything but that one article and a ho-hum blog post, they’ll shrug their shoulders and move on. Be consistent in your content creation.
Set success benchmarks.
As discussed earlier, PR content can have many positive outcomes for your brand. What’s important is that you base your maximization efforts on the ones that matter to you.
We’ve seen startups win multimillion-dollar investments by sharing their Forbes content with investors. If that’s your goal, put the article in your email signature. Bring it up in your next investor meeting. The ball is in your court.
If the question is “Can working with Relevance help me acquire leads?” the answer is “yes.” But if the question is truly “Will working with Relevance help me acquire leads?” the answer is “it depends.” Press placements can support a variety of marketing goals, like brand credibility and lead nurturing. When it comes to lead generation, they’re powerful but won’t get the job done by themselves. Many digital lead gen strategies include showing up in search as a key focus. If your audience members are like most Google users, they’re more likely to click on a higher ranking result than one further down. By helping our clients move up in search rankings for relevant keywords, they often see their organic search traffic and conversions increase. Ultimately, the right lead gen strategy for your business depends on a variety of factors, like how difficult the keyword competition is and the type of clients you work with. What matters most is having a clear vision of what success looks like. If that’s a conversation you’re ready to have, click here to get started.
Our network includes hundreds of publications, many of them household-name sites. But we discourage clients from thinking about content marketing in terms of “getting into” any one publication. Yes, some clients work with us because they want badges like Forbes and Entrepreneur on their site. It’s important to remember, however, that badge acquisition is one tactic within a larger strategy. We want our clients to see value in our work, which can only happen with a concerted content strategy. Like we said before, content marketing and SEO are about playing the long game. Getting mentioned in your favorite site might check off a bucket-list item, but it’s a shortsighted play.