Keywords are specific words or phrases used by users in their Google searches. Keyword research is the process by which you research the popular search terms people type in when they are searching for news, information or products. Effective SEO keyword research is a crucial success factor in your content creation and public relations campaigns.
PR professionals who do not understand basic SEO and keyword research principles will not stand out. Here are 10 actionable steps to seamlessly integrate keyword research into your PR campaigns, ensuring your content not only ranks well on search engines but also resonates with your target audience.
Step 1: Define Your Goals and Audience
Before diving into keyword research, outline clear goals for both your SEO and PR campaigns. Identify your target audience and understand their interests, preferences, and pain points. This foundational step ensures your keyword strategy aligns with your overall objectives.
Step 2: Create a List of Seed Keywords
Initiate the keyword research process by brainstorming a list of seed keywords related to your content. These should represent the core topics that your audience is likely to search for in your public relations campaigns.
Step 3: Leverage Keyword Research Tools
Explore powerful keyword research tools such as Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush, or Moz Keyword Explorer to expand your list. These tools provide valuable insights into search volume, competition, and related keywords, aiding you in making informed decisions in your public relations campaigns.
Step 4: Analyze Search Volume and Competition
Strike a balance between search volume and competition. Focus on keywords that have a significant search volume while avoiding those with excessively high competition. This ensures your content has a better chance of ranking prominently in search results and boosting your public relations campaigns.
Step 5: Know the stage of the buyer’s journey
Certain clues in how a keyword or query is structured will tell you where the searcher is in the buyer’s journey. For example, a keyword that starts with “how to” is generally indicative of someone in the early stages of the buyer’s journey. They might be looking for basic information and may not be ready to purchase yet. They’re learning.
A keyword that begins with “best” suggests the searcher is in the consideration phase. That person is looking for mid-stage content. Since they’re looking for something but not sure what the best option is, you might be able to persuade them with helpful content.
Step 6: Align Keywords with User Intent
Understand the intent behind the keywords you’ve chosen in your public relations campaigns. Are users seeking information, looking to make a purchase, or trying to solve a problem? Tailor your content to meet these specific needs.
Step 7: Conduct Competitor Analysis
Analyze the keyword strategies of your competitors. Identify gaps and opportunities that can set your content apart. Understanding what works in your industry can guide your own keyword selection and enhance your public relations activities.
Step 8: Localize Your Keywords
If applicable, incorporate location-based keywords in your public relations campaigns to target a local audience. This is especially crucial for businesses with a physical presence or those catering to specific geographic regions.
Step 9: Utilize Google Autocomplete and Related Searches
Take advantage of Google Autocomplete and the related searches section to uncover additional keyword ideas. This insight provides a real-time glimpse into user queries and interests.
Step 10: Develop a Comprehensive Content Plan
Organize your selected keywords into a cohesive content plan. Strategically incorporate these keywords into your content to ensure a natural and engaging flow. This plan should guide your content creation across both SEO and public relations channels.
Remember, the goal is not just to stuff keywords into your content but to provide valuable information that aligns with what users are searching for. Balancing SEO optimization with high-quality content is key to a successful strategy and public relations campaign. Content will always be king.