Why Public Relations is becoming the new SEO

By Nov.20, 2014

HatTrick Logo 2014


Why? Because when you strip all the marketing terminology back we’re simply storytellers and Google loves a good read!

HatTrick has from day one been about embracing change; constantly looking at ways of doing delivering communications differently, through to investing in new technology to ensure everyone in the business can seamlessly deliver global brand campaigns. It’s that hunger for change that led me onto the Search and Social Media Marketing professional course at Salford University.

As the digital landscape continues to evolve I was hungry to learn more about how PR and Search have emerged and how HatTrick as an international communications agency, based in Manchester could connect the two disciplines together.


From the course I’ve learnt that while once, many considered SEO to simply mean getting inbound links to your site to boost visibility on Google search results pages; nowadays this is no longer the case. Today, as far as Google is concerned it’s all about relevance, influence of the site and quality content. Some elements of the course were sounding very familiar and I was right to feel this way because this is exactly what PRs have been doing all along and why I believe that public relations is becoming the new SEO.

Here’s why:

As PR professionals, a key aspect of our role is analysing the client’s audience and then finding the right channel or publication to target with well-written and engaging content. The change in media landscape over the past ten years and rise in social media channels has opened up more opportunities than ever before for placement of content in order to build brand awareness and reputation.

Given that PR has always owned and managed communication channels, the responsibility of setting strategies and delivering content through social media naturally has become a daily task of a PR consultant. According to Google guidelines, having a strong Social Media presence is just as important as having an updated website.

By identifying and pushing out content to online influencers, naturally encourages them to share it with their followers. The more active a brand is in seeding out across social media channels, including Google +, Facebook and Twitter, means there is more chances to obtain higher rankings.

Everyone’s focusing on quality content

Add to the debate, Google’s recent changes to its guidelines on how websites are ranked on the search engine, also means that SEO professionals are too also now focusing more on creating quality content that people want to share, rather than just link building, in order to get its clients’ sites at the top of the search engine – exactly what PRs have been doing all along.

Do you agree? Nevertheless, regardless of whether the two disciplines are merged together in the future or that SEO may no longer be the answer to traffic-related prayers. Through storytelling content marketing tactics, brands can only now navigate their way through the treacherous SEO landscape of 2015 and beyond with support from a strong public relations campaign.


One thought on “Why Public Relations is becoming the new SEO

  1. Alex Fenton says:

    Hi Karen, I think this is a really interesting point and it highlights I think, the fact that SEO isn’t dead, it’s evolving. You can see that from the gravitation away from the term SEO – particularly in job titles – people are now ‘Head of Search’ when they used to be SEO. I think this reflects the evolving role of SEO, which as you rightly say, also encompasses elements of PR. I’ve got a few thoughts on your post – do drop me a line if useful.

Comments are closed.