How to Get ROI from Publicity

by | Apr 5, 2021

If you think publicity for your brand is pointless, you probably haven’t been doing it correctly. When I do digital PR, it boosts brand awareness and industry authority, leading to a significant rise in my leads and sales.

Would you like to know how I do it?

My secrets are in this article, especially how I use SEO and social media to convert my online press coverage into high-quality leads and sales. Let’s dive in.

Steps for Turning Publicity into Sales

There are several ways to convert your publicity into sales, and each tactic has its pros and cons. Below is my tested and proven approach that works for businesses in various industries.  

seo pr checklist

1. Search Engine Optimize to Leverage Publicity

Search engine optimization (SEO) prepares your site to receive and convert the traffic it receives from your online publicity. The first thing to optimize is your website’s homepage. An optimized homepage strengthens the backlinks created by your digital press coverage that lead back to your homepage.

Optimize the homepage by targeting a valuable keyword or keyphrase and strategically inserting it across the page. Your homepage must also contain quality content that describes your brand and services and compels your target audience to convert.

Avoid keyword stuffing and make sure the keyphrase appears naturally in your content. Otherwise, your homepage’s readability will suffer and affect its ability to convert visitors.

Combining quality content and keyphrases will also help your homepage rank for the target keyword in relevant search results. Just as important, your keyphrase must appear in your page title, meta description, and subheadlines.

Below is a screenshot of my freelance copywriting website homepage, which targets the keyphrase saas copywriter.

Once your search engine optimization is complete, you can launch your online publicity campaign.

2.      Start Generating Publicity for Your Business

Several digital PR strategies are available. My favorites are responding to HARO queries and connecting with journalists. Both options are relatively simple to execute and are ideal for entrepreneurs and brands looking for quick results with minimal effort.

Respond to HARO Queries

HARO, or Help a Reporter Out, is a platform where journalists connect with experts and get useful information for their reporting. By responding to reporter queries on HARO, you can establish yourself as an authority in your field and a reliable source of information. Besides journalists, small blog writers and content producers for digital and print publications use HARO for research.

I once responded to a Business Insider reporter on HARO, and my reply landed me a feature. Below is a snapshot of my response.

Hello Robin,

I’ve been a 6 figure copywriter for over three years, and I started freelancing in 2015. Last year, I even made 6 figures not only after expenses but after taxes as well.
My tips are…
Find a profitable niche you enjoy – While I could have chosen any other of my personal interests, I decided to niche down in SaaS (software as a service) and marketing technology. Working with more profitable businesses allows me to charge professional rates for my services. This would have been hard working with small businesses. Plus, I truly love the B2B tech industry.
Outsource a predictable lead generation system to a virtual assistant – When I stopped having my VA run my Twitter and Instagram and instead outsourced email outreach to her, my leads skyrocketed! I now teach other freelancers how to outsource email outreach.
Brand yourself – It’s essential to stand out online. Your brand doesn’t have to be fancy, complicated, or expensive. For me it’s just my tagline “B2B SaaS copywriter” and using bold black font, plenty of white space, and the color green! Doing something is better than nothing. Keep it simple to start, and keep your brand consistent everywhere.
Please let me know if you want any edits!

Out of several HARO responses, Business Insider probably chose mine because it was unique and specific. The feature included a backlink that still drives traffic to my website and supports my search engine ranking. Check out my HARO tips for more about providing creative and original answers that differentiate you from other HARO responders.

Connect with Relevant Journalists

Another quick and easy to execute digital PR tactic is connecting with journalists, content managers, and event managers. Note that this tactic only works if you are connecting with media people within your industry. LinkedIn is an excellent platform for finding such connections.

These journalists cover the activities and events of your competitors and other notable individuals within your industry. Their coverage of your upcoming event or recent accomplishment will boost your visibility and provide valuable backlink opportunities for your business site.

Content managers from relevant companies can also assist your digital PR campaign by featuring you in their upcoming blog posts, eBooks, or summits. Or, they could give you the chance to publish a guest post or press release on their website.

What about event managers?

On Usersnap, I hosted a talk about conducting customer research interviews.

The event opportunity came from one of my LinkedIn connections, who happened to be an event manager. The more connections you have, the more likely it is the right people will send relevant digital PR opportunities your way.

3.      Promote Your Publicity on Social Media

Social media isn’t just for sharing cute and funny videos. You can leverage some of your favorite platforms to generate great publicity for your brand. How? Every time you get a great digital or offline PR opportunity, plaster it all over social media. Let the world know about your accomplishment.

Sharing your publicity on social media is social proof – a powerful psychological tool for getting attention from social media users. It triggers renewed interest and buzz about your brand that leads to:

  • Fresh leads for your website
  • Proposals from brands that would like to work with you
  • More sharable content that can lead to sales

For this tactic to work, share screenshots of your publicity coverage on your social media page. If you want the post to generate leads that turn into sales, don’t accompany the snapshot with a link to the publicity coverage. Instead, add a link to your most relevant sales page. It will increase the chances of prospects discovering your services and contacting you.

Below is a Facebook post of mine that immediately yielded $600 in sales for a $27 digital product.

Reach more people by creating several posts for each piece of coverage and sharing it multiple times on all your social media pages. Avoid repetitive-looking posts by sharing your publicity coverage from different angles. For example, I shared my Usersnap piece from a personal angle in the below post.

In another post, I informed my followers about what they could learn from listening to my talk.

4.      Get a Virtual or Press Assistant for Your Digital PR

Juggling running your business and getting publicity can be overwhelming for anyone. Instead of multitasking and getting less than desired results on multiple fronts, consider letting a professional handle your digital PR.

You can outsource digital PR to a press or virtual assistant, or you could hire a freelance writer or marketing manager. Any of these experts can answer HARO queries on your behalf or connect and pitch ideas to podcast hosts. A freelance writer can also find guest posting opportunities and handle the writing for you.

Of course, you will need to teach your digital PR team how to communicate on your behalf and provide them with a template for creating your social media and guest posts.

What are You Waiting for?

Using the above steps, you can start profiting from your publicity coverage. If you need more information about how to outsource your digital PR for better results, download my free SEO PR Checklist.

seo pr checklist

Dayana Mayfield loves publicity and content marketing and how they work together. She's been featured in Business Insider, Forbes, YFS Magazine, Thrive Global, StartupNation, and countless co-marketing opportunities. Her story pitches have landed startup founders and small businesses in dozens of online publications. Grab her SEO + PR checklist to learn how to rank your small business in Google search using digital PR -->


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