Jess Peace & Thierry Ngutegure
Since the last Sheffield DM in late January this year, there have been some major changes in the world and of course, for Sheffield DM. Due to the ongoing public health situation and for the wellbeing of our community, the March 2020 edition of our in-person event was cancelled.
In more positive news, Sheffield DM became an award-winning event, picking up a Digital City Award for ‘Digital Event of The Year’. Spurred on by the win, the team worked hard behind the scenes to create the first ever online edition of Sheffield DM, which was live streamed to our community (and beyond!) via YouTube LIVE.
In fact, if you missed the live event, or simply want to relive the magic, check out the recording below!
If you’re more after a quick overview and to get your mitts on the slides, here is how Sheffield DM #9 went down...
The first talk of the evening was given by Rise at Seven’s Content Marketing Strategist, Jess Peace.
Her engaging talk proposed to call b******t on the theory that you can’t have it all at once. Jess offered useful insight to Sheffield DM’s online audience, explaining how you can create content that works for users, search and publications, without compromising on storytelling.
Writing content for SEO
To begin with, Jess noticed that high-quality content is a core factor to a successful campaign; not only does it provide relevant information, it can improve your discoverability and rankings.
Jess advised that the key elements you should consider when writing content for SEO include headings, internal links, image alt-tags, keyword research, meta data, user intent and CTAs.
Creating PR content
Jess explained that digital PR involves creating online content that is designed to raise brand awareness, often by outreaching to external sources to get coverage and build links.
Offering her advice for successful outreach: you should consider the angle of your story, whether or not it has a strong headline or if it adds value and offers something new.
How to get the best of both worlds
Jess stated that user intent is essential for SEO and PR content - the real metric you need to measure is whether it is useful, informative, engaging and relevant to your audience.
She also noted that while metadata is largely associated with SEO, ANY piece of on-page content should have an optimised meta title, description and URL. If including keywords in your headline doesn’t sound right, including them in the metadata is a great way to compromise.
Use headings where relevant to make content easier to consume - and for PR, use these as headings and subheadings.
Where possible, try to include an internal link within your content, not only does this improve your SEO but also gives users an option to continue their journey.
Check out Jess’ slides below:
Thierry Ngutegure, Data and Insights Manager at Rise at Seven, was next to step up to the plate, following on from his colleague Jess.
In a presentation filled with gifs, data and valuable insights, the Sheffield DM audience were treated to an exciting talk on the importance of brand as a metric and how building links feeds into this.
Thierry explained this concept through the example of a campaign that Rise at Seven did for GAME, recreating their famous Christmas Tinner campaign but with the aim of getting links.
Finding the right audience for brand
Firstly, Thierry explained that while SEOs tend to look at the outlets they target for outreach by Domain Authority, we should be looking at engagement, traffic and brand awareness.
For GAME, they looked at the referral traffic (specifically, the social engagement) of the old campaign, expecting to see TechCrunch, however instead finding that food sites and LadBible had picked this up previously.
Thierry explained that once armed with a new hook and content for the campaign, these are the outlets that they targeted. Gaining in total 154 links, 85,000 page views and 10,400 social media shares of the product - with a 13% brand uplift.
How do you measure brand?
Thierry stated that you don’t need fancy tools or a massive brand to start. In fact, he advises to start with thinking about brand vs non-brand searches. Search volume [brand mention] + [product/service] is a great indication of your brand awareness.
However, if you do have the resources to do so, YouGov Brandindex was cited as an excellent way to continuously track the public perception of everyday brands.
Not all links are equal
SEO value is not the only strategy, while links may benefit them, think about the intent and impact of these in the long-term for the brand. The focus is now links that are actually clicked on - driving traffic, engagement, brand sentiment and brand awareness.
Check out Thierry’s slides here: