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In Context Newsletter

Letter from the President



Innovations abound in 2014 and we are excited to begin the new year with our clients and partners.

Today, we have a couple of news updates. Google released their new algorithm, Hummingbird, late last year. The changes have significant impact on your press releases. Our summary below will give you the full details and how William Mills Agency is handling the changes. There are also many new faces in the financial media. Our FinTech Media updates will give you an idea of who has moved around over the past few months.

In addition, I am proud of our support and involvement in FinTech Insights. FinTech Insights are radio episodes from the Technology Association of Georgia (TAG)  that contain wonderful observations on the financial industry from prominent companies in the industry including TTV Capital, Celent, Beyond the Arc, IDC, and i7strategies. We encourage you to listen in on these episodes. Also, be sure to check out our 11th annual report, Bankers as Buyers 2014, which gives you a snapshot into the financial industry and lays out trends for the coming year. 

Lastly, we wanted to share some insights with you on how a PR plan can be different based on your organizational industry focus and size. There are different strategies for early stage and established companies, and our white paper lays out some alternative approaches for managing a PR plan.

Best regards,


Scott Mills

Optimizing Your Press Releases for SEO Comes Naturally to WMA

Stay up-to-date with host of social, mobile and Google changes impacting search

Driving a large number of visitors to your company’s website and converting them to leads requires a high page rank for targeted keywords being used by prospective customers in their search for financial products and services. Staying on top of search engine optimization (SEO) best practices can be daunting due to continuous revisions in search engine algorithms by Google and the impact of social media and mobile devices. 

Unlike many pure SEO consultants, our agency’s approach to improving SEO results has always been centered upon the fundamental focus of content.  We create straightforward and compelling content of interest to the financial media and markets. We understand that Content is truly King and do not try to artificially beat the system. Our SEO best practices have always included:

  • Committing to research applicable long tail keyword phrases that will drive visitors;
  • Embedding those keyword phrases appropriately within our press releases in order to build credible links back to your website; and
  • Using social media professionally, as a way to promote the sharing and to maximize the visibility of your content.

Google’s release of its Hummingbird algorithm in September of last year created significant changes. “Google’s goal with Hummingbird is to provide more highly targeted results based on the meaning of the entire search phrase, not each individual keyword.”* Combined with changes to its algorithm provided by its Penguin release in 2012, there is a decided focus on eliminating the use of unnatural links within press releases designed to trick the system for calculating page rank. 

Our partner, Business Wire, has released A Guide to Press Release Optimization that contains 10 Tips for creating press releases that conform to the current guidelines established by Google. You will find additional detail about the fundamental processes our agency recommends and uses in the creation of press releases for our clients. In addition, you will find guidance on the emerging changes that are impacting the calculation of page ranks for your keywords, including:

  • Adding calls-to-actions (CTAs) within your press releases that point to landing pages, which can be created using today’s inbound marketing automation software such as HubSpot or Marketo;
  • Ensuring your website uses responsive design for mobile devices so that visitors can easily find and read your content; and
  • Using a range of multi-media, photos, illustrations and video as a part of your traditional press release.

We encourage you to read Business Wire’s Guide to Press Release Optimization or contact your WMA associate to learn more about this topic.

*Business Wire Report, A Guide to Press Release Optimization

FinTech Media Updates

  • William Mills Agency welcomes Sean Sposito, formerly of American Banker to The Atlanta Journal Constitution.
  • David Pogue is no longer serving as technology editor at The New York Times.
  • Marian Raab is now overseeing editorial coverage at the Credit Union Journal.
  • Walt Mossberg is no longer at The Wall Street Journal.
  • Bryan Kay has left HousingWire and is enjoying freelancing.
  • Rania Oteify is now editor at Scotsman Guide.

FinTech Insights, Radio Episodes from TAG TV


FinTech Insights is a series of conversations about the changing technology and payments innovations impacting the U.S. financial landscape. William Mills Agency is proud to sponsor these episodes along with TAG TV and TAG Radio.

TAG FinTech is a Georgia organization formed in 2010 that focuses on the needs of companies, individuals and investors serving the financial industry. Georgia is growing as an epicenter of the financial services industry, a sector often know as FinTech. 70% of each credit card swipe and 60% of the 135 billion global payments were processed in Georgia last year according to an article by Tony Catalfano of The Atlanta Journal Constitution. 

FinTech Insights is hosted by Globalspeak President Frank Baia. See the episodes at

Episode List:

  • Sean Banks, Partner at TTV Capital, discusses the rapidly evolving financial technology industry, from its historic Georgia roots to recent increases in deal flow.
  • Bob Meara, a Senior Analyst at Celent, deliberates on what's driving branch transformation and what is different today.
  • Steven Ramirez, CEO of Beyond the Arc, examines using social media as a source of customer intelligence, as well as the challenges and opportunities for change in the future of financial services.
  • Jerry Silva, IDC Global Banking Research Director, explores how retail banking is evolving to meet challenges and creating new opportunities. 
  • David Peterson, Chief Strategic Officer of i7strategies, discusses the transformations of physical bank branches and if virtual branches are in the future. 

PR Strategies for Larger Enterprises vs. One Product Companies

Fundamentally, PR tactics should be consistent regardless of company size. However, the differences in managing PR programs for early-stage, single-solution companies versus larger, multi-product organizations are real and can make a significant impact on your company.

Check out WMA's new white paper to learn more about the differences and synergies between the two. 

Download White Paper

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