PR Software is Measuring the Once Unmeasurable
Technology, software, and AI are modernizing industries across the board, and PR is no exception.
There are a large number of tools out there that are streamlining the PR process. Some advances are redefining the process altogether. From finding relevant contacts to media outreach to managing a PR crisis, PR software is changing the game in unprecedented ways. Every step of the process can be tracked and analyzed to maximize a company’s ROI.
PR Software is advancing at a staggering rate. As analysis and reporting become more mainstream, it’s becoming a necessity to provide visual results of your PR efforts. Data-backed decision making is defining success. Business owners that are adapting to the change will be expecting data and metrics to justify their ad spend.
As long as a company’s goals are clear, there are tools available to address every task. Some of these include:
- Media Databases
- Analytics Software
- Media Monitoring Software
- Press Release Distribution
- Crisis Management Software
A well-maintained media database is an integral part of any PR campaign. A comprehensive repository of influential journalists, editors, bloggers, and publications is an ideal starting point for targeting a specific audience. It’s not enough to create the content, the responsibility is also on you to make sure your content gets distributed to the right people.
More sophisticated tools offer even greater functionality. Some allow users to create custom lists, organize contacts by beats, and even pitch to hundreds of journalists at a time! The ability to search for and target the most relevant contacts gives you an opportunity to get to know who you’re pitching to. Knowing their beats, interests, and what they’ve written in the past allows for more personalization in your outreach. The more detail you can include in your pitch, the better your chances of acquiring earned media.
The more data you have to start with, the better you can fine-tune your pitches. This is precisely how high-quality outreach gets developed.
It’s not enough to track everything you’re doing. It’s also essential that you benchmark the results. Through key metrics, it’s easy to see how strong your messaging is, and how well it’s resonating with your audience. Based on that data, it’s a matter of trial and error (and more testing). Discovering the perfect message means a stronger connection with the audience you’re targeting.
Analytics also help provide value to the mentions acquired through PR campaigns. Fine-tune your messaging by combining vast data sets with other PR software tools.
When it comes to justifying the ad spend, it’s hard to argue with numbers and facts. The data that analytics software provides gives a definitive, visual representation of the ROI.
The data always has a story to tell. So long as you’re consistently testing, monitoring, and adapting accordingly, you’ll always have a clear goal in sight.
Analytics also help provide value to the mentions acquired through PR campaigns.
And don’t forget! You can fine-tune your messaging by combining vast data sets with other PR software tools.
Media Monitoring Software
The 24 hour news cycle waits for no one.
To add to this, sophisticated content creation tools are readily available for people that are willing to take the time to learn how to use them. Some tools are simple enough that they barely require any knowledge or experience to create some pretty decent stuff.
As more and more people assume the role of content creator, the more the world’s supply of content grows, exponentially. Even with the power of Google, the deluge of content across just about every kind media makes acquiring coverage even more difficult.
In the old days, PR professionals would scour newspapers and articles by hand, looking for mentions about a company just to see if they got coverage — a tiresome and lengthy process.
Media monitoring tools perform (with nearly no human intervention) what used to take days or weeks in just a fraction of the time, finding specific coverage across print, broadcast, and online media.
Not only can you track mentions on your company or brand, but your competitors as well!
More advanced tools will track mentions and coverage, and label them according to tone or sentiment (typically positive or negative). It’s an incredibly powerful feature that helps you determine the right course of action, whether the mentions received were good or bad.
Press Release Distribution
These services help get news out to specific outlets. In other words, helping businesses increase reach and brand awareness.
Each service touts its own unique distribution network. But there’s greater value in services that are able to reach prominent outlets like Associated Press, Google News and Yahoo! News. Getting placement on popular channels help contribute to a business’s clout. It’s useful way of positioning yourself as a thought leader in a specific industry.
And nowadays, many questions regarding accuracy or legitimacy are resolved with the phrase, “Google it.”
There are more benefits to issuing releases than you’d expect.
For instance, there’s a sense of authenticity and authority that comes with online ubiquity. You can’t help but feel an air of ‘corporate authority’ when a company has a strong online presence supplemented by press releases.
In short, press releases are a tool. Its success hinges upon using that tool deftly. Develop an agile strategy that applies a multipronged approach with a few strong, newsworthy releases.
Crisis Communication Software
Sometimes, crises are inevitable.
But by actively utilizing media monitoring software with crisis communication software, you can minimize the damage and help turn the tide quickly.
We mentioned before that media monitoring tools can help track sentiment across coverage. Keeping a keen eye on the data and identifying an increasing trend in negative sentiment can help you identify (and possibly avert) a potential PR nightmare.
Crisis communication software a subset of project management software that aids in streamlining the steps needed for crisis resolution, making it as painless as possible. This type of software gets information into the hands of those that need it, makes priorities clear, aligns your team’s goals, and makes certain public messaging is timely and consistent.
Remember, the best responses are well-informed responses. Having all hands on deck with clear goals to achieve helps to resolve crises in the most quick and efficient way possible.