Every good PR practitioner understands the importance of delivering fantastic results for clients. To do this we need to have a proactive approach to securing coverage and links to deliver results and as part of this approach, we utilise PR tools and software.

PR is a multi-faceted industry and as a PR agency, we need to seamlessly move into a new role daily, which requires in-depth knowledge and specialised PR tools to deliver the following for our clients;

  • Monitor what is being said about our clients’ brands/services and industry-related news
  • Measure and report on PR success to showcase the value
  • Spot trends and monitor the news for proactive and reactive opportunities

In this blog, our Digital PR Account Manager, Matthew Fraser, shares his insight on tools to use for PR and which ones are worth the investment, both for clients and PR agencies.

Media monitoring

Monitoring the media landscape for clients is arguably one of the most essential elements of PR. We need to know and understand what is being said about our clients, whether that be in the press or on social media.

Keeping abreast of topical news, and understanding what customers and stakeholders think of our clients and what their competitors are doing is also crucial.

Not to mention, media monitoring is a fantastic way to measure your results and ensure any client reporting is accurate and up to date.

Tools utilised by the Faith team include Precise and Google Alerts for tracking our client’s coverage and brand mentions. Google Alerts are also good for keeping a check on our clients’ competitors while the team use Twitter, Google Trends and conducts daily media monitoring to spot industry trends and newsjacking opportunities.

Investing in a media monitoring tool like Precise will help ensure that any brands mentions are captured and delivered daily, they are also key reporting information such as the reach of the coverage. Other media monitoring tools include Gorkana, Veulio and Kantar and all range in price depending on the number of clients that need monitoring.

Measuring success

To showcase the ROI for PR activity, using a suite of reporting tools can help you monitor the success and evaluate the impact for clients.

Individual clients will have their own key performance indicators that they will expect from a PR agency, which is why you need to select reporting tools that will provide you with the necessary information.

Tools such as Cision, Agility PR and Buzzsumo can help you track reach, share of voice, sentiment, and coverage trends. While these reporting tools are important, they can have high costs associated with them.

In addition to these, there are a host of free PR tools that can be incorporated into your reporting; Google Analytics allows you to track and monitor referral traffic to your client’s website.

Trend setter

Keeping abreast of media trends and the news agenda is another important element for PR. It can provide you with reactive opportunities for your client, allows you to understand what is on the media agenda and how your clients can fit into it.

ResponseSource is a useful tool for the PR industry, as it allows journalists, publications and influencers to send out alerts to PR professionals who are signed up to the service and they can discuss different ways of partnering – whether that be providing expert comments, case studies, products or brand partnerships.

If you are on a smaller budget and ResponseSource isn’t an option, following the #jounrorequest on Twitter can help you find media opportunities.

Signing up for key media titles’ newsletters, reading the news daily and setting up Google Alerts are all free ways that you can be aware of trends and what is happening in your sector media.

Creating media lists

Having a well-researched and up to date media list for a client is an important tool for PR and something that can be difficult to research without using an expert tool.

These tools can provide you with the relevant names, addresses, social handles, and contact details of journalists that can be used to pitch in your clients and discuss ways of working with a publication.

Investing in a media list building tool is a must for a PR agency, as not only does it give you access to the information, but it can make the whole research process more time effective.  

There is a range of tools available on the market such as PRMax, Gorkana, Veulio and Agility PR that can help with the media list building process. Each of these tools has pros and cons and are available at different costs.

It’s important to research these and consider the needs of your business to conclude what would be the best tool for you.

Delivering a successful PR strategy for clients is a process, by introducing and utilising an effective mixture of paid-for and free tools it allows us to streamline and execute the PR plan to deliver and report on results and deliver a solid ROI for clients.

If you need PR, content or social support to help your business, feel free to get in touch with the team here.