2023 was a year of rapid growth in the digital PR landscape and as we step into 2024, that growth shows no sign of slowing down.
Digital PR should be factored into every digital marketing strategy to increase brand awareness, provide high-quality backlinks and increase search engine rankings.
From a shift in metrics to the need for more positive news, in this post, we’ve rounded up seven key Digital PR trend predictions that can help inform every PR strategy and help position your brand for success.
For more information on how Embryo can help accelerate your digital PR strategy, contact our team by phone at 0161 327 2635 or email [email protected].
Trend 1: A Rise in Exclusive Content
With a recent rise in journalist redundancies, PR professionals have collectively found it has become more challenging to land placements. Going into 2024, offering content exclusively to journalists will take centre stage as a way of landing coverage as they tend not to want to publish articles that have already been featured on other sites.
This means that pitch emails should be personalised to the specific journalist you are targeting, the word “EXCL” should be featured in the email subject heading and the article itself should be written to match the writing style and tone of voice as the publication, allowing journalists to easily copy and paste your article straight onto their website.
Once / if the journalist has chosen to publish your article exclusively, you can then do a second wave of outreach to other publications.
Whilst this might seem more time-consuming and could lead to fewer links than a ‘spray-and-prey’ approach (which is not something we recommend this year), an exclusive approach can lead to features on higher domain publications and help build and maintain relationships with journalists.
Trend 2: A Shift in Metrics
While the traditional approach to digital PR focused on gaining links and visibility across as many websites as possible, this year will see a shift towards quality over quantity.
This transition away from superficial growth metrics will ensure there is a focus on obtaining high-value, more sustainable links instead. This means getting fewer links but being featured on higher-domain, reputable websites.
Securing placements on highly reputable websites not only boosts a brand’s ranking in search engines but also establishes it as a trusted brand in its industry. This is an invaluable asset that contributes to long-term brand loyalty.
Trend 3: Connecting with Journalists
Social media sites such as Twitter and LinkedIn will become key strategies to engage and build relationships with journalists this year.
Journalists often use both of these platforms to seek out new pitches, expert quotes or industry insights, so by actively monitoring relevant hashtags, participating in industry discussions and monitoring journalist pages, brands can take advantage of opportunities to position themselves as valuable sources.
Trend 4: Data-Driven Storytelling
While campaigns are a great data-driven way to land placements, they traditionally have a reputation of being formal, long-form pieces of content.
With a rise in people using smartphones to consume news, the concentration attention spans and on-the-go nature of audiences must be taken into account when creating campaigns, meaning professionals need to find ways to present data and facts in a short yet compelling, storytelling way to retain attention.
When writing a campaign, visually appealing infographics or interactive elements can be a great way to display extra information without overwhelming your audience.
Trend 5: Using TikTok as a Research Tool
TikTok’s influence is undeniable, transitioning from an entertainment app to a source of information and inspiration. Its impact has led it to be described as ‘the new Google,’ essentially becoming a search engine in its own right.
With audiences using the platform to search for content on every subject imaginable, many journalists now use it to discover trending topics to base their articles around. By regularly keeping an eye on real-time TikTok trends, brands can identify growing topics and viral challenges within their industry well in advance, allowing them to tap into conversations in advance, stay ahead of the competition and remain relevant.
Trend 6: The Need for Good News
With Covid, inflation, rising living costs and wars, the past few years have been tough for many. The constant influx of negative news has left many people feeling overwhelmed and instead looking for positive stories as a relief.
While informative, on-topic content will continue to be important, there is a growing recognition of the need for positive, uplifting, escapism-type content that will inspire and provide moments of joy. As a result, this content will resonate more with audiences and they will be more willing to share it with their wider networks.
Trend 7: The Rise in AI
We couldn’t speak about 2024 predictions without touching on the rise of AI.
AI is rapidly influencing the digital PR landscape due to its affordability and effectiveness. AI’s capabilities span multiple tasks crucial to PR campaigns, from analysing data, providing survey and interview questions, generating headline variations, transcribing audio and generating supporting imagery. The efficiency brought by AI is undeniable, acting as a powerful tool for brands to streamline their strategies.
However, it’s important to remember that while it can be effective, AI should not be a replacement for the expertise of PR professionals. Where AI falls short is its lack of emotional intelligence, which is crucial for digital PR as it’s important to understand and convey emotions in messaging and tailor them for different audiences. This a human skill which cannot be replicated by AI.
Additionally, it is becoming increasingly easier to notice content that has been produced by AI. This is something that can get your website penalised by Google and can also damage your reputation with journalists.
As we kick off 2024, these trends promise to reshape the way brands connect with their audience through digital PR. By staying ahead of the curve and embracing these evolving strategies, brands can ensure that their campaigns not only stand out but also resonate with the ever-changing preferences of both journalists and their target audience
If you want to skyrocket your digital PR strategy in 2024, get in touch with our team of experts to see how we can help.
Call us on 0161 327 2635 or email [email protected].