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2022 Digital PR: A Year in Review

By Megan Sanctorum

2022. Another Chaotic Year for News.

The news cycle has been anything but normal the past few years. Repercussions from the Covid-19 pandemic continue to be a major storyline in local and national outlets, along with inflation, talks of an impending recession, and a volatile housing market. 

Our content and digital PR specialists strategically worked to navigate another tricky news cycle and lean into the top digital PR trends of 2022. 

Common themes in our 2022 digital PR campaigns included health and wellness, the impacts of the economy on personal finance, and real estate/housing topics.

Digital PR Campaigns in 2022

Between December 1, 2021 and November 30, 2022, our agency launched 139 digital PR campaigns for our clients that centered around fresh data and new ideas. These campaigns offered journalists a balance of evergreen narratives and timely newsjacking opportunities to gain widespread coverage. 

We found new ways to get inspired and created unique campaigns that stood out in a crowded news cycle. Our digital PR strategists came up with campaigns that balanced industry relevance with newsworthiness. These campaigns established our clients as subject matter experts on topics like moving trends, consumer shopping habits, eyecare, sports analysis, and much, much more. 

One size does not “fit all” when it comes to data and digital PR. Our clients come from all different industries, but we were able to create newsworthy campaigns for each one via national surveys, data scrapes, and analyses of search trends. 

Data box showing the number of campaigns, links and placements

National News Coverage in 2022

Successful digital PR in 2022 connected our clients with the largest and most relevant audiences possible. What better way to grab widespread attention than to earn media coverage in the nation’s leading, marquee publications?

  • 818 placements in national publications 
  • 90% of placements from DA 50+ websites
  • 69% of placements from DA 70+ websites
    Media logos for 50 major national publications

    Earning media coverage in publications with a national audience not only increases a company’s exposure… it also plays a major role in SEO strategy. 

    National outlets have an impressive domain authority (DA). Every time they mention or link to our client’s website, search engines take notice and view it as a sign of trust. Google crawls high-DA websites and assigns value to the links they cite. That value carries over to our clients, improving their website’s authority, keyword rankings, and ultimately their visibility in organic search.

    How do we do it? Our team of PR pros builds relationships with journalists at leading publications by routinely sharing unique research, new data, and hot topics that are of interest to their audiences. We know the type of content they want to share, and we’re able to produce digital PR campaigns to meet those needs. 

    Local News Coverage in 2022

    Local news continued to be a staple of our digital PR strategy in 2022. Roughly half (52%) of our inbound media coverage in 2022 came from the thousands of local television stations, radio stations, and newspapers serving Americans across the United States. These hyper-local digital platforms offer incredible SEO and PR value in the form of strong DAs and high traffic volumes (not to mention opportunities for amplified coverage through syndication). 

    This year, our work was featured in 49 of the 50 states, reaching millions of local news consumers.

    • 3245 local news placements
    • 87% of all designated local media markets (DMAs)
    • 42% of links in major media markets

    We earned 3245 placements in local newspapers, television stations, and radio stations’ websites over the past 12 months. These digital publications, with geographically diverse audiences, also carry an average domain authority (DA) of 60. Making each local link earned a valuable asset to our clients’ websites.

    Local news is often the preferred type of news in many communities across the United States. There are 107 million TV homes in the country broken up across 201 designated market areas (DMA), according to Nielsen. Our content was shared by 87% of the nation’s media markets.

    Graphic showing the top 20 DMAs that share DTC content

    Local news also carries additional, albeit harder to measure, PR value in the form of broadcast, print, and radio coverage. This year, our clients were featured in 556 different newspapers, 367 television stations, and 565 radio stations. 

    DMAs are designated by population, with the top markets reaching the greatest potential viewerships in New York City, Los Angeles, and Chicago. And of our total local news placements,  42% of all local placements earned by our clients’ research occurred in the 30 largest media markets in the US. Taking advantage of opportunities for coverage in both local and national media outlets is one of our top digital PR tips from 2022.

    What’s Next for Digital PR?

    Digital PR continues to grow in popularity as more companies learn about the tremendous value it can bring to their SEO and digital marketing strategy. As the digital PR space becomes more crowded in 2023, content campaigns will have to become more newsworthy, targeted, and unique in order to stand out and earn coverage.

    Our team has navigated an irregular and pandemic-driven news cycle for three years now. By analyzing the top 2022 digital PR trends, we can use data to determine which types of content campaigns resonate most with journalists. 

    We expect consumer and personal finance narratives to continue to perform well in 2023, along with health, sports, and other data-backed campaigns.  We have yet to see what new headlines will enter the news cycle in 2023, but our team will continue to adapt and provide timely and relevant research through our digital PR campaigns.

    In addition to content trends for 2023 digital PR campaigns, we expect digital PRs to be watching for more updates from Google as the industry gravitates toward conversations about not just quality links, but relevant inbound coverage as well for maximum impact.

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