Danny has some good words to say on Tom Foremski’s controversial assertions re. Google’s latest search tweaks:
Do I think the press release will die? Yes. Do I think the practice of littering releases across the web via newswires will/should die? Yes. Do I think SEO will die? Very likely.
Do I think PR will die? Well, it depends how you define PR, but if it is defined as a way of producing high quality content and distributing it across all relevant channels to raise awareness and reputation, then I think the answer is a categorical no.
But he also tweeted the article with the comment “Why Google isn’t killing PR” — and there’s an interesting reveal in that statement too.
PR isn’t always the best industry at avoiding bad habits and shortcuts. Indeed, some might argue a lot of agencies have become flabby disappointments, designed for a time when you could get away with a more negligent approach.
But as Google destroys some of the more lazy, ineffective avenues – like newswire spamming – PRs will be forced to adapt or die. If anything, Google’s encouraging those who rely on such ancient means to embrace more effective alternatives. Just as its search tweaks have always encouraged SEOs toward more wholesome techniques.
If you’re a good PR, and practicing what I’d call “defensive SEO”, you should be fine. And if you’re a bad one, it’s just more apparent now for the world to see.
Google isn’t likely to ever start killing PR. In fact, it may even be one of the stronger forces making it sit up and save itself.