Why digital PR is an essential part of all that we do!

Honest Communications, a specialist garden and home PR agency, social media management, content creation and communications agency

One of our core values here at Honest is to grow together. This means to grow with our clients but also with each other. As part of this, once a month a team member leads a knowledge share where we impart our pearls of wisdom and chat about a subject we know about, or have recently been learning about.

This month we were looking at Digital PR – what it means to us, and what it means in practice for us and our clients on a day-to-day basis.


Like every good presentation, we started with a definition.

What is Digital PR?

Spoiler alert, it’s PR but online. Or as the Digital Marketing Institute phrase it –

Digital PR is a strategy used to increase awareness of your brand using online methods. In many ways, it’s similar to traditional PR, but it offers the opportunity to reach a much broader audience that can’t be reached with only offline methods.

Digital Marketing Institute


So in essence, traditional PR is about getting coverage in print, magazines, newspapers, radio and TV with the aim of building a brand and shaping a reputation, whereas digital PR is about getting online coverage. But not only that, it’s about securing links back to the client’s website from another website. Albeit this is a very simplified view as both incorporate so much more than this. If it was that easy, we’d be out of a job!!


That means that digital PR strategies become LINK-BUILDING STRATEGIES.

The first thing to consider as part of a link-building strategy is where you want the links to come from.

Traditional PR focuses on readership and how the demographic of a publication is the right fit for a client’s target customer. As such, we make our recommendations to clients of where they should be seen based on that fit. However, instead digital PR focuses on boosting a little thing called Domain Authority.

But what is Domain Authority we hear you cry. Wonder no more…

Domain Authority is a score between 1 and 100 (the higher the better) given to websites that help predict how well the site will rank on search engines, and therefore be seen by more people – the dream for PR people!

The ultimate digital PR goal is to get a backlink (i.e. a link to your website) from a website with a high Domain Authority. But that’s not to say it’s all just about the score, the site still needs to be relevant to the reader as well (and to the journalist to entice them).

HOWEVER, there are many, many, many other factors that affect Domain Authority, and securing online PR coverage is just a tiny part of the bigger picture. We can help clients secure PR coverage and place their content on high-ranking editorial sites, but there are many other factors at play that can impact Domain Authority scores too. Ways to improve Domain Authority include on-page and off-page factors. On-page are things the site owner can control, i.e. copy, links, structure, tags, optimised images, and off-page are things going on outside of the website, and generating external endorsement i.e. features with links on media sites through link building and digital PR strategies!


On a practical level, this all means that where we place client content is more important than ever! So when creating our media lists, we focus more on high-scoring websites and select our top targets based on their score (but also making sure the readership fit is right for our clients!). Then we hone in on the best digital contacts at the outlets too, researching what they’ve written about previously to make sure we’re speaking to the right people with content that is of interest to them. It’s all about boosting the chances of media pick up.

Once we’ve identified the targets, it’s time to think about the content strategy. For digital PR, it’s all about search results and creating content that answers peoples’ questions so that our clients are among the first results when someone searches for something related to their products or services. Because of that, a content strategy always starts with research – we look into topics and carry out search listening to find what topics related to our clients are popular. We then delve into keywords to make sure we’re using the right language and phrases to boost the chances of our copy coming up in search results. We then do some snooping on competitors to see where they’ve been featured and with what topics to see what’s popular.

However, even after all that planning, research, top target identification and search-friendly content planning and writing, we PR people are always in the hands of the gods (i.e. the media). Ultimately, as with all earned media, it is a journalists’ decision if they not only use the piece and feature our lovely clients, but also if they chose to include a link. We can do all that work, secure a feature and a link to the site still may not be included. It’s still PR, there are never any guarantees. BUT, and it’s a big but, that’s where we come in! The best way of preventing a missing link is to have strong relationships with the media that have been built up over time with experience and a track record for delivering solid, reliable information. Fortunately, that’s our speciality, and something we are very proud to have a reputation for delivering.


If you’re wanting to boost your online presence with digital PR (or even a strategy of the perfect blend between digital and traditional – our favourite!) then get in touch!