As we explained in an earlier post, Google’s web spam team is looking to target the (questionable) practise of using low-quality article writing and ‘guest blogging’ as a means to get links back to your own website.

Exactly how they are going to do this is speculation at best. But we’re not worried about these spammy ‘SEO’ techniques because we have never considered them worthwhile.

As Matt Cutts (Google’s web spam head) explains in many of his posts on the subject, the legitimate use of guest blogging to build exposure, brand and community is not what they are after. They are targeting the low-quality, low-value posts and sites that (!) charge for linking back to you.

We believe – and so do most legitimate bloggers – that guest blogging is about providing quality content that connects with and is valued by an audience. To do that takes solid relationship building skills, both with the website owner and with the audience of the blog itself.

Guest blogging is about communication

PR has always been about building professional relationships. The fact that the Internet is a communications channel means that PR is ideally suited to ever-changing landscape of the online world.

You see, more and more the changes that the big search engines are making to their algorithms are adding up to marketers needing to manage an online reputation of reality, not fantasy. Of course you want to rank well, but the way to do that is to get known for being really good at what you do – just like in the ‘real’ world.

And you can do that by building relationships with the people and businesses that matter most in your industry – the ‘influencers’. They are the ones that you need to connect with. To do that, you need to know who they are and why you’re connecting with them.

Should you do it yourself or outsource?

You could spend your time doing all this yourself, of course. There’s no reason why you shouldn’t be networking and marketing your content within your network and sphere of influence.

But if you want to go bigger, your best bet is having a PR professional who can help you research and connect with online journalists and bloggers. They will research story opportunities and pitch them with just the right amount of persuasion.

In the 24/7 world we exist within, public relations are now more important to your business than ever before.

It’s a real-time communications environment and PR professionals know how to monitor and respond to the conversations within your audience and sector.

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