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Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Five Easy Online PR Essentials for Blogs

A blog in your website allows you to:

  • Add fresh original content to your website quickly 
  • Keep people up-to-date about your business
  • Get feedback 
  • Help customers
  • Engage with your audience
  • Gain Google SEO brownie points by adding quality content to your website

Most blogging platforms are much easier to use than CMS systems as you can usually do all of the following on one easy-to-use page and instantly see the results:

  1. Post photos and videos (by embedding the YouTube code in the html view) to blog pages
  2. Post and embellish the text 
  3. Add SEO elements

All the design elements are done for you. Most blogs can be customised relatively inexpensively to look like they are part of a website. Some of the best blogging platforms, such as WordPress, offer more sophisticated controls and themes, to the extent that they can be used as an inexpensive website substitute.

The big SEO advantage is that blog content feeds into Google really fast (can be under an hour, compared to weeks or months for new content posted onto a fairly static website). The downside is that it is a less flexible design format: most of them work by allowing new content to shunt the older posts down the page (blogs stand for web logs, hence the date-based content structure).

Five Blogging SEO Tips 

  1. Consider whether you can (without it looking contrived) get a search term into every blog post headline. Never force it or your blog will immediately look like an off-putting SEO machine, not a genuine attempt at human communications 
  2. Lightly optimise the text after writing. Focus on saying what you mean first - then see if you can use some search terms - no more than one search term or hyperlink per 100 words  
  3. Add search terms to the box called variously tags, labels or keywords. 
  4. Add a picture or video to every blog post to give yourself extensive additional SEO opportunities. If you don't have a photo or video, create relevant wordart by pasting the blog post text or the keywords into Wordle is free to use for commercial purposes. It is owned by IBM and the condition of use is that you give a credit. I sometimes do that by adding the credit to the word cloud itself..
  5. Photos or videos give you valuable SEO options to add search terms in the:
    a) caption or description
    b) the filename
    c) the photo or video tags and alt tags/descriptions 

Photo Tool Tips for Online PR

  • Most of the above SEO tweaks to photos are easy to add in Google's free Picasa photo editing and management system. 
  • For extra SEO exposure, use Picasa to post optimised visual material directly to Google+ web albums using the big green button at the bottom of the screen.
  • If you are more used to Photoshop, I salute your learning curve and agree the editing options are much superior, but usually take longer to do if you are not using the system extensively. Google's Picasa is, not surprisingly, custom-built for SEO. 
  • NB: The Picasa photo management may appear to order things differently, but it leaves the files where they are on your hard-drive. 

 PR blog posted by Penny Haywood Calder at PHPR Ltd, Edinburgh, UK. URL: PHPR TV Channel on YouTube: PHPR Ltd on LinkedIn Follow PennyHaywood on Twitter

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posted by Penny Haywood Calder at


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