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June 7, 2018 Stef Reeve
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With brands trying their best to create a better customer experience by using a more customer-centric approach, there’s a strong case for collaboration between digital marketing and PR teams in order to do this.

PR teams need to refresh their methods and digitize their output, so partnering with digital marketing teams is a match made in heaven. And vice versa – digital marketers can use traditional PR as part of their strategy with new connections and opportunities.

Let’s take a look at a few benefits of shared collaboration.


1. Finding Common Goals

Creating co-ordinated campaigns that use the best that digital marketing and PR have to offer can improve reach, performance and influence. When common goals align, agencies can find new ways to work together to everyone’s benefit.

Just some of the most pertinent common goals are:

  • Brand narratives and story development
  • Good content strategies, including planning and placement
  • Social listening for buying signals
  • Amplified social interactions and media coverage
  • Optimised marketing strategy based on data

2. Sharing Skills

The world of communication is changing

The world of communication is changing and with the explosion of social media and digital channels over the last few years, the demands of clients are increasing and the need to master new platforms is growing.

Clients have new expectations for the type of service that a PR firm should be delivering. It would take lots of financial resources, time and effort to build internal teams that can provide the type of digital expertise that certain platforms require and it can also be difficult to successfully monetise the offering.

Working with a digital marketing team can help to plug gaps in social, content, design, and web-based briefs. Social media and content production are areas that are especially in-demand.

PR agencies can offer specific skills based around traditional media communications that are often overlooked in digital agencies. This can help clients to reach different audiences that digital marketing can miss and provides a truly integrated approach.

3. Reactive Content

The digital landscape is always moving and demands a reactive approach to the amount of real-time events and trends that are going on across various social platforms. Social media keeps agencies on their toes and digital marketers are adept at this type of seat-of-your-pants style of social marketing.

This lends well to helping PR agencies with the type of short-term, reactive content that their clients might ask for. Digital marketers can help with content strategies that anticipate seasonal trends and have the capacity to assist with reactive social content that takes customer and client experiences into account.

On the other hand, PR agencies are experts at creating long-form, thoughtful content, such as thought leadership pieces, detailed press statements and they know how to work with and connect with media companies. This can be essential for digital marketers that need help with a campaign that suits traditional media and they don’t have the right connections.

4. Data Analysis

More data gives more insight into the positive and negative aspects of a campaign

One of the biggest advantages of working with a digital marketing team when you’re a PR agency is the data analysis expertise and capabilities that you can tap into. Click To Tweet

Being able to monitor how well your campaigns are going enables you to pivot, make changes and improve your campaigns next time.

Having the software to monitor interactions and connections across a wide range of social platforms is essential for any modern marketing campaign. Having this type of information at your fingertips means that PR agencies can have a reporting suite and data to communicate and show how a campaign is going to a client.

More data gives more insight into the positive and negative aspects of a campaign and enables PR agencies to advise and educate their clients on what action to take next based on actual data analysis. This information will help to enhance, improve and maximise the campaigns being delivered.

5. Connections

Both digital marketing agencies and PR companies can provide each other with a whole host of interesting and relevant contacts to boost campaigns. By collaborating with each other, this little black book of contacts can be shared and utilised.

PR agencies tend to have a comprehensive list of media contacts and connections that can be tapped into for marketing campaigns that use traditional forms of media. Whereas digital marketing agencies might have connections with web-based contacts, such as social media influencers or service providers.

Trusted media and creative contacts can be hard to come by when you’re venturing into an unknown area, so having digital agencies and PR agencies that can vouch for contacts can turn a campaign around.


Conclusions

Combining PR and digital marketing strengths such as PR outreach or highly targeted paid advertising can help agencies and businesses to build more successful campaigns and overall marketing strategies.

We’ve seen how both parties can benefit from collaboration and this can (and does) work really well if the relationship starts off on the right foot.

At WATB Creative, we partner with McOnie who specialises in industrial and technical B2B PR. McOnie shares with us their expertise in building award-winning PR campaigns and WATB help them to focus their targeting and strengthen their campaign narratives and messaging using solid data.

Forward-thinking PR agencies recognise the importance today of integrating digital communications into their client campaigns to amplify the messages.  However bringing the skills in house with a dedicated specialist or team doesn’t always work and it can prove very difficult to successfully monetise the activity. Consequently McOnie provides this important skill set by partnering with WATB, an experienced digital agency that can advise and deliver on digital activity when and where it is needed. They have the skills, tools and experience that we are looking for and our clients are demanding.” – Sarah McOnie, Managing Director.

We also partner in other ways, our design team support the excellent Public Relations agency Famous Publicity, providing digital collateral, print material and other design work.

If you are an agency looking to partner with an award-winning digital agency, please get in touch!

 


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