In this piece, Louis Venter, CEO of MediaVision, explores the relationship between Content and Digital PR.  Taking a different approach to the subject, Louis looks to his own agency to showcase why good content needs great digital PR.

Over to Louis...

We all know content is king when it comes to SEO, but now, with Google’s increasing emphasis on brand building as a vital ranking factor, the focus on content has become more important than ever. Though it’s one thing to create really gripping stuff, the immense role that Digital PR can have in making it successful is often overlooked.  

How we saw the effect of Digital PR in our own agency

I didn’t want to write another “you should all be doing this” blog post with no actionable takeaways, so instead I’d like to share a small content marketing project we did for our own agency that had great results because of effective Digital PR. I hope you find something useful in it for your content marketing initiatives.

The campaign – Happy Birthday to us!

Recently MediaVision celebrated its 10th birthday and to mark the occasion, we conceptualised a campaign that centred on ‘10 years of digital marketing’ - the idea was to illustrate how the industry has evolved in a decade. We hoped the concept would resonate with our audience because the growth is undeniably fascinating.

Most of the planned content did really well, but the piece that outperformed all the others genuinely surprised me. I realised its success was distinctly tied to two factors: spot-on audience targeting and exceptionally good Digital PR.

This was our strategy

We made a beautiful infographic. 

The content concerned was an infographic highlighting the growth of social media over the last 10 years. I knew it was a great piece but I had no idea how impactful it would be by the end of the campaign. Although it was a strong piece and really well targeted, I knew we couldn’t just rely on our current social and blog following to share it far and wide.

Earlier in the campaign we’d published another piece - the evolution of Google over the past 10 years - which was equally as strong, but it didn’t have an overwhelming impact and I wanted to make sure this one hit the spot.

Then we developed a PR strategy

We brainstormed a few options for PR and eventually decided on a pinprick approach, concentrating on the quality of a relationship rather than the more impersonal volume-based approach to selling in. The reason for this was that we believed if key influencers picked it up, then the rest would follow - giving us the ideal combination of authority and volume.

We then spent the next week researching key influencers. We started to discover which journalists from key publications shared infographics like this in the past, and which worked for highly influential titles that our demographic loved. It was quite a list to begin with, but we stuck to the core strategy of quality influence over quantity, and that narrowed it down significantly.

Once we had our dream list of interested parties (Hubspot, MediaBistro and AdWeek to name a few) we lined it all up and pressed go.

And the results? Traffic to our blog tripled in a month!

The results have been phenomenal. A month after influencers started sharing this piece it had already been picked up by more than 100 other sites and blogs – all of them embedding the infographic and linking back to us as the source. The domain authority average of these sites was an awesome 53 - and we even had four links from sites in the high 80’s.

With this one post, we tripled traffic to the agency blog in a month. Because of this, our SEO results have peaked and we’ve had more new business enquiries in the last six weeks than we have had in the past six months! 

What we learned

We place a lot of value on our approach to PR, preferring it to be relationship instead of tool focused, and believe a personal sell-in has far more impact than anything a tool can do. The results we achieved with this campaign have definitely confirmed that good content can be great with effective PR.    

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