If you ask me where link building is heading, then my one word answer would simply be “PR”! Google looks for both authority and quality in a link. You can attain both of them through big media outlets and online newspapers only. However, startups have to put in some real effort and money to get their name featured on such big media outlets.
The reality is that not many startups get successful in being featured on such spots. Thus, many people want to learn about how to get featured on media outlets, how to get the attention of news journalists, how to build connections with top blog authors and much more. I thought instead of answering these questions, why don’t I reach out to a person who has been writing on top blogs and big media outlets for a while. The person I am interviewing today is amazing at what he does. He is an entrepreneur and a contributing writer on websites like Inc Magazine, Entrepreneur Media, Adrants, Digital Journal and more.
Murray, thank you for your time, I believe this is going to be an interesting interview as I am planning to ask you all the questions that are in the mind of startup owners and SEOs with regards to PR and getting the eyeballs of media outlet journalists.
Answer: I found law to lack creativity and wanted to work in a more positive environment. I find working with the creative people in marketing and PR, as well as founders to be very inspiring. Your job takes up a lot of the hours of your day and you want to work with happy, creative people as much as possible.
Answer: You are competing with a lot of great ideas, founders, and startups out there to get customers, press, and funding. I meet lots of great founders struggling to get their message heard, to rise above the noise and I want to help as many as I can. I only have so much time to help a small number of people. I wrote this book with Drew Hendricks to help as many founders as possible.
Answer: You need to tell the story of your company, but it is much more than just a history. Your brand story needs to include elements like who you are helping, what you stand for, what your values are, your design assets and why anyone should care.
Answer: One of the key reasons people share content is because it makes them look clever. Your content should be so good that it makes people look clever when they share it. Funny content is also very sharable. Marketers come up with funny campaigns, but most are not that funny. You also need to make it smart, if funny for your audience, for the people who you want to connect with, the readers. It is great to build a persona of the audience and work out if it is going to be funny for them. Try tweeting it to that group and see if it resonates with them.
Answer: It is much better to reach out to help journalists and build relationships before you need them, then when you want them to cover you. Know the journalist’s audiences and what their passions are, so you know how to pitch the journalist about why their audience will want to read the article. Pitch stories about problems or trends that the journalist’s readers encounter and the solutions to them and make the story about topics, not your company.
Answer: The best online marketing is thoughtful, engaging and gets people to share it because it provokes emotions. Brands need to stop trying to produce content and try and make great content that people love. Then when you think of brands like Gopro you think about content people love; that is what makes them successful. Gopro cameras are just a small part of the story; the real story includes the exciting things their users are able to capture.
Answer: CEO’s need to know how marketing and PR works for sure. If you want to have world class marketing and PR, hire an A team player that is in-house instead of a vendor. Just because your iPhone can shoot movies does not mean that you are going to shoot the next block buster on it.
Thank you very much for your time and answering my questions. Answers are amazing and surly a bookmarkable guide for anyone who wants to hit big media outlets and builds relationships with journalists.
Note: If you have any other question, please share it in the comment section and I will request Murray Newlands to answer those as well.