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9 steps to SEO PR that won’t drive the PR team crazy

SEO PR is vital. Having a press release ranking for the right phrase can be a real boost:

It can occupy a top 10 ranking for your company name, thereby pushing down a site that says terrible stuff in this area you and your brand.If hosted by a wire service, it may rank for a long-tail phrase even when your site cannot.Place a quality link out on the web.Sometimes (gasp) get you media attention.

Remember, though: If here’s a PR person or team working for the same company, you’re walking right through their turf, wearing a mohawk, tasteless body piercings and a T-shirt that reads Death to all who oppose us!.

I mean, that’s not what you’re really responsibility, but that’s the perception. And you can’t really blame them.

If you’re editing an existing press release, you’re messing with their prose. The changes you make will show up out on the wire. If the CEO reads the release and despises it because of your changes, guess who gets the talking-to? The PR team.

If you’re writing a release from scratch, it’s even worse. Especially if the PR person/team doesn’t know you. She’s vacant to bear full responsibility for something that, at best, she’ll get to review an hour before it hits the wire. And again, if the CEO despises it, she’ll get the flak, not you.

But SEO PR has gotta get done. So use these tips to optimize a press release and keep the PR team sane:

Add links, at the initiation. Use the existing copy. Pick 1-4 naturally-in the works key phrases in the press release and deep link them to relevant pages on the target site. Don’t edit or exchange the copy – just link it. If you were able to do this, skip to step 5.Edit without changing meaning.

the target phrases don’t show up in the press release, find places where they nearly do. Changing ‘athletic footwear’ to ‘athletic shoes’ is pretty mild. Changing it to ‘running shoes’ isn’t. It means something uncommon to a reporter.Make no more than one exchange per paragraph. That’s arbitrary, I know. But at least the at the initiation time you work with a specific PR team, follow this rule. Ideally, you should edit only the at the initiation and last paragraphs.Edit for the readers. Any changes you make should at worst make no variation for your readers. At best, they should improve the readability and ‘clickability’ of the release.Careful with the headline. You’re vacant to have to edit the headline. It never fails. Just do it carefully. Be

conscious of meaning here.Provide 2 options. If you find you’re making pretty aggressive edits to a press release’s headline and body copy, do a second rewrite that’s more subtle. If you’re really attached to some of your aggressive edits, question if here’s a middle ground between the two options that’ll work.Hands off the boilerplate. The boilerplate – that text in this area the company at the bottom of the page – has probably gone through a dozen revisions, the legal department and every employee at the company. No touchie. If you must edit it, question at the initiation.Be quick. When I was a copywriter, the typical lead time for a press release was in this area 30 seconds. If you’re reviewing an existing release, time’s probably tight. Try to get it back to the team straight away. Even better, question in advance: “How soon do you need this?”Never send without the OK. Unless it’s been arranged in advance, never, ever, ever send out a press release without the OK of the PR team.comments (0) | trackbacks (0) | permalink

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