I was meeting with a marketing professor recently and she asked me about my prediction on the next trend within the digital marketing industry. I responded with a simple answer: the digital unicorn.
If you are unfamiliar with this term, it is someone that has a public relations background but a firm grasp on digital. If someone in HR is nervous to post an advertisement on Indeed seeking a Digital Unicorn, “Digital PR Specialist” would be the safer route.
He or she is familiar with backlinks, search engine optimization and implementing the proper title tags on the site. Yet, this unicorn also has connections within the PR industry, can make new reporter connections on Twitter, knows how to write compelling blog content and can promote blogs and articles to be seen by the masses on social. Don’t forget, this unicorn knows how to shoot and edit videos, has a keen eye for photography and can code HTML.
For all of the naysayers who assumed PR was dead, think again, this skill-set will continue to be in demand as marketing departments and agencies try and snag these well versed individuals.
If you follow the SEO industry, you are well aware that Google values quality content. Long gone are the days where you can manipulate Google’s search engine with low quality content. You need to constantly be increasing your domain authority, which is something this unicorn can spearhead.
For example, if you work in the apartment industry, contributing content on sites like Apartment Finder and Apartment Guide can not only help establish your credibility, it can also increase a metric that is called domain authority.
Google’s core algorithm, PageRank, is predicated off of backlinks. The more credibility a website has, the higher its domain authority.
Think of the Apartments.com website. Thousands of apartment related websites link back to this domain, which over time has given this site a very high and credible domain authority. When you search for apartment-related search terms apartments.com frequently populates.
When a high quality site within the same industry or the same city links back to your site, it can drastically improve your SEO.
If you have a Digital PR Specialist, you can not only forge the relationships with these sites through outreach, but he or she can write the articles and promote them on social. Over time, this can lead to more referral traffic, brand recognition, more valuable keywords ranking on the first page of Google and more revenue for your business.
Quality is king.
Sharing your company’s story in a compelling fashion seems simple, right? I can’t tell you how many times business owners and marketers completely drop the ball on their content execution, which leads to a failed marketing strategy.
It is important to realize that compelling content is the backbone to marketing success. About 350 million new photos are added each day to Facebook, and 100 million hours of video are consumed daily on the social channel. If your content doesn’t kick ass, nobody will pay attention to your brand.
A digital PR specialist can help you hit a home run with your content strategy. This will actually make your advertising budget work more effectively in your favor while getting more people to talk and pay attention to your brand.
You see, Facebook has a metric called Relevance Score. Without even putting a penny behind a post, their algorithm will be able to detect based off of the interaction of your post along with the engagement how well your post is performing. The more high quality content you push out, the more likely your content is going to crush it from a performance perspective.
If your digital PR specialist can improve your search engine ranking position, write amazing copy for Adwords and churn out quality content, you have found an extremely valuable asset for your business.
To find the ultimate digital unicorn, this digital guru would be able to create graphics using Photoshop, be familiar with WordPress and basic HTML and be proficient with FinalCut for video editing and Google Analytics.
The trend continues where brands are shifting ad spend away from traditional television and more towards digital. By 2020, companies will have their own digital content teams producing videos, writing articles and pushing out Facebook live stories. Some brands are already ahead of the curve.
For the entrepreneurs that are hustling on their own and are working on a shoestring budget, it is time to become your own digital unicorn so you can get found and talked about online.