By Kaitie Frank
11 Mar 2024

How to Build a Strong Digital PR Strategy

Advanced Link Building

Digital PR involves managing a company's online presence and reputation through various digital channels. It is a strategy for building links involving content-based assets to obtain links from online publications, journalist placements, blogs, and content websites, going beyond traditional media outreach. The objective is to create a positive digital footprint and interact effectively with the target audience. This approach typically uses data-driven research, studies, polls, and gathered online data to create a compelling narrative around a broad topic, with graphical elements to enhance the content.

If you run an online business, you may benefit from a solid digital PR strategy. A well-planned digital PR strategy can increase brand visibility, manage your online reputation, and build positive relationships with key stakeholders. 

It’s important to note that no two digital PR strategies will look alike. Every website has different goals, and so the strategies must be shaped and formed according to those goals. However, there are steps everyone should take to create a strategy that works for their unique needs.  

Define Objectives and Target Audience

Start by clearly defining your PR objectives. Are you aiming to increase brand awareness, manage a crisis, or launch a new product? Other common objectives in a digital PR campaign include:

  • Building thought leadership;
  • Improving your online reputation;
  • Increasing customer engagement.

Objectives serve as the roadmap, guiding your efforts and helping you measure the success of your campaign.

Additionally, understanding your target audience helps craft messages that resonate with them. To define your target audience, you must collect data about:

  • Age groups;
  • Gender identities or profiles;
  • Economic and/or social class;
  • Educational background;
  • Industry groups;
  • Experience or expertise;
  • Geographic location;
  • Consumer habits;
  • Other defining characteristics that may be important to your product, such as marital or employment status, parents vs. childless families, etc.

Then, turn this data into personas, which can further narrow your target audience definition, making it easier to craft personalized messages. Afterward, you can segment your audience based on shared characteristics to allow for more targeted outreach. 

Lastly, a target audience is not static. Regularly revisit and refine your target audience definition based on evolving market trends, customer feedback, and changes in your business offerings.

Conduct a Digital Audit

Conducting a comprehensive digital audit is a crucial step in developing a successful digital PR strategy. This process involves a detailed examination of your current online presence, including your website, social media profiles, and existing digital content. This informed perspective serves as the foundation for developing targeted and impactful digital PR strategies that align with your overall business objectives and audience expectations.

When auditing your website, it’s important to evaluate the user experience (UX), content, SEO performance, and conversion paths. These steps will help evaluate how easily your potential customers move through the buying process and how your site performs in search engine rankings. 

For your social media profiles, ensure that all platforms have consistent branding and necessary information. Also, assess the effectiveness of your content strategy and identify posts with high engagement. You can also use social media to evaluate your audience demographics and add them to your target audience personas.

Next, evaluate your existing content by creating an inventory of all digital content, including blog posts, articles, videos, and infographics. Categorize content based on its relevance, popularity, and alignment with current brand messaging and evaluate its performance. Identify the pieces that have generated high engagement, traffic, or conversions, and consider updating or repurposing successful content.

Lastly, create a report summarizing the strengths and weaknesses identified during the audit. This will give you a bird' s-eye view of your site and its current state, allowing you to make strategic decisions about your overall strategy. 

Identify Key Messages and Brand Story

The next step is to create key messages that align with your brand values and resonate with your audience. This messaging should be consistent across all digital platforms because it helps:

  • Build brand recognition: Consistent key messages and a cohesive brand story contribute to brand recognition. When your audience encounters a consistent message across various channels, they are more likely to remember and trust your brand.
  • Establish authority: A consistent and well-crafted brand narrative helps position your business as an authority in your industry. This authority builds credibility and fosters trust among your target audience.
  • Create an emotional connection: Consistent messaging, especially when coupled with an authentic brand story, creates an emotional connection with your audience. Emotional resonance fosters loyalty and encourages long-term relationships with your brand.
  • Facilitate recall: Clear and consistent messages are easier for your audience to remember. When faced with choices, a well-established brand image and story can be the deciding factor in their decision-making process.

When crafting key messages, it's essential to keep a few things in mind. Firstly, you should define your core values to establish the foundation of your messages. This will help you stay true to your brand identity and communicate your values effectively. 

Secondly, tailor your key messages to address the specific needs of your target audience. This means understanding your audience's pain points and tailoring your messages to resonate with them. 

Thirdly, highlight your unique selling propositions (USP) to differentiate yourself from your competitors. This will help your audience understand what sets you apart and why they should choose you over others. 

Fourthly, be concise and clear, avoiding jargon and unnecessary complexity. Clear and simple messages are more likely to be understood and remembered. 

Finally, emphasize the benefits of your products or services. Benefits are what your audience cares about, so focusing on them will help you connect with your audience and win them over. These tips will help make your key messages more compelling and bring authenticity to your brand. 

Build Relationships with Online Collaborators

Identify influencers, thought leaders, and journalists in your industry or niche. Establishing relationships with them can amplify your message and increase brand credibility. First, identify the niche or industry that aligns with your brand — their audience is more likely to share interests with your audience. 

Then, research past stories they’ve used or written to make sure the content you send them is relevant and valuable to them. If you send them random content that doesn’t have value to their audience, you risk damaging a potential relationship

When you reach out to a potential collaborator, personalized messaging is key. Approach them with genuine interest and respect for their work. Engage with their content, comment on their posts, and share their insights. Building a relationship should be a two-way street, not just a transaction. Clearly articulate why you appreciate their content and explain how a collaboration could be mutually beneficial. Personalized communication demonstrates sincerity and increases the likelihood of a positive response.

Foster long-term relationships with these partners rather than one-off collaborations. Building ongoing partnerships allows for sustained credibility and trust-building with the influencer's audience. It also provides opportunities for continuous collaboration and content creation.

Lastly, monitor key metrics to measure the impact of influencer collaborations. These metrics may include engagement rates, website traffic, social media mentions, and conversions attributed to the influencer's promotional efforts. Based on the results, adapt your collaboration strategy and optimize for better outcomes. Learn from the performance data and feedback to refine your approach, ensuring that future collaborations are even more effective.

Develop Engaging Content

After defining your target audience and conducting your digital audit, you should have a pretty good idea of the type of content that will resonate with your audience

You can use tools like Semrush and Buzzsumo to help you find keywords to target and understand trending topics (respectively). Additionally, you’ll want to stay updated on industry trends and capitalize on those topics within your digital PR strategy. 

It's essential to use analytics tools to measure the performance of your content. Track metrics such as page views, shares, likes, comments, and time spent on your website. By analyzing these metrics, you can gain insights into what resonates with your audience.

Based on the performance data, it's important to adopt an iterative approach. Identify successful content types and themes and refine your strategy accordingly. Continuous improvement ensures that your content remains relevant and resonant with your evolving audience.

Building a strong digital PR strategy requires a thoughtful approach, a deep understanding of your audience, and a commitment to consistent messaging. By defining clear objectives, conducting a digital audit, and embracing best practices, you can elevate your brand's online presence and successfully navigate the dynamic world of digital PR. 

Kaitie Frank

Kaitie is a copywriter and content writer for Page One Power who specializes in SEO-optimized content. She has written for various niches and prides herself in knowing random tidbits of information. In addition to putting words to paper, she indulges in physical fitness and telling her cat why he is, in fact, a good boy.