What is “always-on link building” and why is it a must for your SEO and marketing strategy
The rapidly changing news cycle, especially over the past year, has prompted digital PR experts to take a step forward in their outreach strategies. With all the changes and breaking news experienced in 2020, digital PRs have introduced traditional PR communication techniques as part of their approach. This is the case of the “creation of permanent links”, better known under the name of newsjacking.
Always-on is a PR strategy that occurs in two main scenarios. The first is when a journalist has a request for content, and the PR provides them with information that meets that request and helps them with their story. With the second, which has a more proactive approach, the PR will present commentary to relevant journalists based on recent or upcoming news or events that journalists might be interested in – even if they did not request this information.
For example, since July is “plastic-free month”, we created a piece for one of our customers in the packaging and logistics industry to raise awareness of the amount of plastic that ends up in the oceans. By jumping on this key date, we managed to get excellent coverage from One Green Planet and Business Insider, among others.
In both scenarios, this type of activity requires quick responses and turnaround times, and for your content to have a strong connection to the news you are trying to link your customer to. The always-on technique has been commonly used in traditional PR for some time but, with the rapidly changing news cycle we experienced last year due to the pandemic, it was quickly adopted by PR as well. digital. It’s the perfect technique to use if you’re looking to impact results in the SERPs between campaigns and maximize your PR efforts.
What are the benefits of using permalink building?
Using this technique as part of your marketing and SEO strategy can bring many benefits, including:
Increase brand awareness across different types of media demographics – this technique allows you to create more flexible content that will be attractive to new media verticals
Expand your media demographics, contributing to greater reach – which results in an amplification of the brand’s audience
Increase organic traffic – resulting in a bigger and stronger backlink profile
What makes a permalink building strategy successful?
Time and relevance are the keys to a successful always-on strategy. The benefits of this technique are great, but there are a few considerations you should keep in mind:
With always on, timing is everything. If an event occurs, such as the Oscars or the Baftas, the commentary or content that the PR wants to pitch to the reporter must be sent within 20 minutes of the news breaking.
However, you should also take into account that if an event is taking place in the evening, it is likely that, apart from the reporter covering the event, the rest of the staff will be at home. So, depending on the nature of our content, you may need to consider presenting it the next day. Keep in mind that journalists also have personal lives. So while having a quick response is helpful, never forget that you are talking to human beings.
Time is also important when it comes to working with a client. You need to make sure that the client or company you represent can provide you with the content you need within a certain time frame. It is important to build strong relationships with your clients so that you can understand if they will be suitable to engage in this type of PR activity and persuade them to commit to faster turnarounds. if needed. Being creative with the content of your ongoing strategy is important, but so is the logistics of managing the process.
As PR professionals, we take every opportunity to get our clients featured in the media. However, it is important to remember that not all requests are suitable for your client. Before presenting a journalist’s request to your client, here are some questions to ask: Can my client provide substantive knowledge or relevant commentary on this topic? Is this the type of post my client should be in? Will this benefit my client from an SEO perspective? If the answer to some of these questions is “no”, you may need to go back to the drawing board and look for other opportunities.
A good example of this is when we spotted a request from a reporter asking for information on “ex-partner nudes” and thought one of our law and abuse industry clients might be perfect. for cooperation. After asking the above questions and getting a “yes” to all of them, we decided to share the request with the client and seize the opportunity, which earned us some great coverage from GQ.
Always-on is increasingly becoming a technique used by digital PR, especially because they have had to adapt to the ever-changing information cycle. This technique requires extensive knowledge of the relevant media industry and events, a deep understanding of the clients you work with, and an ability to deliver content quickly. In turn, clients’ brand awareness will increase, their reach will be maximized, they will be identified as authorities within their industry and this will drive organic traffic to their website.
Ariadna Gonzalez, Senior Digital PR Consultant at Greenlight.