Content creation and distribution is of paramount importance these days. In fact, brands, big and small, have turned into content producing machines, and all the marketing departments are working jointly to spread the word about the content assets. Reaching out to bloggers, influencers, and media is often part of this promotion effort, and that’s where the lines between PR and other marketing channels get blurry.
Thus, marketing professionals of all stripes can benefit if they get familiar with PR best practices and tools. With this in mind, we at SEO PowerSuite decided to put together an infographic, which sums up 50+ of the best PR tools. These are the tools we use in the company to promote our research and other types of prominent content, like the recent page speed experiment. Public relations tools on the list are broken down by the stages of a PR campaign, with a bonus overview of all-in-one PR tools.
Before we jump to the infographic, in which you can find suggestions for the exact tools, let’s explore the stages of a PR campaign in some more details.
A typical PR campaign would consist of preparation, execution, and reflection.
Running PR campaigns successfully is about staying organized and taking care of multiple details, and it all starts with planning. You begin with defining the publication date for your newsworthy content to go live and building up dates for outreach to spread the word about this content. Often times, you’ll have a first round of reaching out to target media before the content is published just to explore the interest in this topic and define the target journalists. You’ll then need to follow up when the news is out and about a week after, and all these dates should be blocked in your calendar in advance.
Next come content ideation and market research. What are the topics your market is keen on? Can they generate publicity for you in the long run and help you develop a reputation for being a thought leader in the space? What newsworthy content seems to have worked well for your competitors in the past and what you can do to replicate the success? These are all the points to ponder at the preparation stage as well.
To add to that, building lists for target media and influencers should also be done before a PR campaign actually starts. How many journalists, bloggers, and influencers can you inform about your news? Get the lists ready beforehand because when the news is out, you won’t have time for this research.
Finally, prepare your pitch and write a press release so that you distribute the information really quickly when it’s published.
Next comes the execution phase, when you pitch your news to media databases, send out press releases via dedicated distribution platforms, and message your target contacts directly. There are tools that let you submit pitches to industry journalists or proactively react to their media requests. These can be found in the infographic below, along with several suggestions for press release distribution services and outreach tools (including budget-friendly options).
When the distribution is over, it’s important to set up your monitoring alerts to track the publications. You need to be the first to know your media prospects have actually provided you coverage because often times they won’t send you a link, and there’s nothing more embarrassing than thanking a journalist for the publication a week after the article has gone live. The reflection stage is also about reporting, i.e. putting together the results for your team and clients. Even more importantly, this final phase of a PR campaign is about getting some actionable metrics of what business impact this coverage has generated. Depending on the tools you use, these may include online readership, estimated coverage views, social shares, brand engagement, the power of voice, and PR attribution.
For the exact tool suggestions for each of the stages of a PR campaign, check out the infographic below: