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How do people search for brands online… and what does that mean for PR

According to MoneySupermarket, 54% people discover brands online through search… and 32% discover them through social media. This change in the way consumers get and digest information, along with the Panda and Penguin changes to Google, is driving a real shift in website design and content.

Brands now absolutely have to realise that their success with  search engines is ALL about content. MoneySupermarket editor in chief, Clare Francis (who over the past year has seen engagement in their site content increase 1000%, and numbers of people viewing content increase 80%) spoke to the CIPR NW in May 2014 about her approach to content.

She confirmed what everyone in PR has been saying for years. To rank well with search engines,  you’ve got to have relevant and quality content. Cheap copy, stuffed with keywords, just won’t do.

So brands are moving towards “integrated content-led marketing”, which means:

  • compelling content and a great site
  • brand, content, PR, SEO and social all working together

“We live in a noisy world – so brands have to provide content which is relevant. And shareable.”

And that investment in good quality content helps..

… increase customer engagement, which gives people a reason to come back…

… which improves brand loyalty and differentiates you from your competition…

… and that in turn builds trust, which leads to a greater propensity to convert.

Of course, it’s a crowded workspace, and harder to get people’s attention than ever before – there are so many channels to access information, for example 70% internet users use social networks each month. This fragmented audience means that:

  • brands can no longer rely on traditional advertising
  • PR can no longer rely on traditional media

 So what can be used?

Great quality relevant content can be in the form of tools, calculators, content hubs, article, videos, guides, shareable content, something topical, insights, data, research… and because of the growth in mobile, they all need to have mobile optimisation.

So take a good look at your brand… and just check that you’re not missing an opportunity to engage with your customers.

If you would like a critique of your brand engagement, get in contact.

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