The most useful tools for PR professionals
Whether it’s planning, production or monitoring results: all facets of life in PR could be made more efficient and effective by using the right tools. Are you using these very useful ones yet?
Both the Google Play Store and Apple’s App Store offer more than 2 million apps. A Google search for ‘online tools’ even comes back with twelve million results. Though not all of these are relevant and useful, apps and tools have become an essential part of our professional and social lives. Still, we remain creatures of habit and could use a little push now and then to help us let go of our old routines and rituals. That is why we would like to offer you this list of tools that can make your life as a PR professional a bit more efficient, effective, and perhaps even a bit more fun as well.
The perfect preparation
Who is your target audience? When are you planning to approach them, with what kind of content and through which channels? With all of the various services available nowadays, answering these questions should not be a guessing game anymore. Through trend watching on social media, you can easily gain insight into the lives and interests of your target audience and put this knowledge to use in your PR practices. Read our article on finding and responding to trends on social media for specific tips regarding Twitter, Facebook, Google, Instagram, and Pinterest.
Asking your website visitors for feedback will give you an even better insight into your target audience. You can do this by using a live-chat application (at PressPage we use Intercom) or via survey tools such as Qualaroo. Once you gain a clear view of the most relevant topics, it’s time to start working on a content calendar, which is not only valuable because of its obvious outline but also has a motivating effect which increases productivity.
Read our 5 steps towards working with a successful content calendar, and also check out this list of useful tools.
Production and distribution
There are many tools available to help with producing your content. For content meant for publication on a website, use the Snippet Optimization Tool to instantly see how your title and intro will appear in Google’s search results. Various other tools can assist you in checking and improving the readability of your text. For adding royalty-free images to your content, you can use websites like Pexels.com and Foter.com.
When also distributing your content via email, it’s obviously crucial to have a sizable mailing list at your disposal. For gathering email addresses, we can recommend ListBuilder (part of SumoMe), and Hunter can help you gather the specific email patterns companies use, which enables you to email employees you know by name.
When it comes to sending out email campaigns, services like MailChimp and ActiveCampaign are well-known parties. Our own technology, PressPage Mail, now also supports setting up and sending out email campaigns, as well as storing and managing your media contacts.
Check out our Ultimate Guide to PR Distribution to get coverage for your stories and reach the right audiences.
Using Google Analytics to monitor your results seems like a no-brainer, but there are still many PR professionals who have yet to discover its value. The insights Google Analytics offers regarding visitors and their behavior on your website are indispensable. Finding out how your articles are performing on other websites, is a different story. Your options here are almost limitless, so instead of naming them all, we would like to point out this list of tools that focus on monitoring everything from reach and engagement to media coverage, influencers, or online discussions. If you'd like to start with the essentials, be sure to read our blog post The essentials of PR measurement.
Finally, check out the IFTTT (If This Then That) app, which lets multiple services connect and communicate with each other in countless ways. It can automatically copy new files in your Dropbox account into your Google Drive, for example. Your MailChimp campaigns can be automatically added to your Google Calendar. Hashtags on Twitter can easily be fed into a Google Spreadsheet, and so on. Check out the IFTTT tips for content marketers from the Content Marketing Institute.
PressPage has no commercial interest in promoting these apps and tools. This article is only intended to give PR professionals some guidance in paving their way through the infinite jungle of available apps and tools.
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PressPage provides a SaaS PR platform with additional services for creation of advanced social newsrooms, virtual press centers and online media hubs. It enables brands to publish and distribute rich content, and provides direct insights into the results. PressPage empowers PR professionals by adding efficiency and effectiveness to their daily work routine.