The new Edelman trust barometer for 2015 has been released and if you’re in search engine optimisation, the news is good. I’ve talked too many years about the power of search and its associated trust and as time passes I feel more and more validated on this one.


What’s In the Report?

For the first time search engines are seen as more trusted than traditional media. You may wonder why this is important, well it’s because if you’re in the search engine optimisation business you can affect what people see and this puts you in a very powerful position when it comes to public relations.

When I started the agency the predominant client interest was in just ranking on generic keywords to generate more converting traffic. There was never a real focus on the influence and brand value search can bring. It’s changing now, not because brands have seen the light and moved towards a bright new future…no, this shift is because Google has forced a change in how brands look at organic search.

So many domains have had penalties so more and more of our clients are having to steer a way from out and out gaming the search engines to playing and more subtle strategy where they build brand equity on Google through digital PR.

What Does This Mean?

In effect this means ranking content from third parties around certain important consideration phrases. In the black hat world they talk about parasite SEO. I talk about digital PR and online media relations.

This Christmas, a group of us got together to work out what the 90 Digital brand was all about, our mission and where we want to go this year. We all felt that digital PR is the best direction for us.

Why? Because ultimately gaming Google with spammy links is dead and whilst I have great respect for my counterparts in public relations, there is only one agency I’ve ever seen which I rate as truly capable when it comes to digital PR.

Now we’re doing more and more digital PR, it will soon be time to reach out to brands who would traditionally have worked with ‘old school’ PR agencies and who are getting restless because they see no meaningful delivery from their PR budgets for online.

This is why we’ve decided digital PR is our future and the Edelman research once again validates our faith in this journey were taking.

The whole slide deck for more reading:

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