In a world of instant communication, news networks, and scrolling media, it can be easy for anyone to feel swamped by the sheer volume of content coming through at any hour of the day or night. For those in PR, trying to make sense of the information overload while working out ways to be heard amidst the noise is a daily struggle.
Getting a clear sense of what’s being said about a certain topic and knowing how to get your own message out there in a way that’s timely, targeted and effective is complex work. Whether you want to let the public know about an exciting new product launch, or are trying to mitigate the impacts of some bad publicity, knowing what conversations are taking place and being able to position yourself in the middle of them is key.
That’s where PR marketing software can play a part. The term itself can in fact cover a variety of related products. These can range from full suites of professional, AI-enabled tools that cover practically all angles of public relations work, to more specific services helping you craft messages, survey current conversations on certain topics, or streamline the process of communicating information.
Broadly speaking, PR marketing software as a whole tends to serve businesses and individuals in three primary ways – providing a range of journalist, media, and influencer contacts; helping to create and facilitate brand-positive messaging and communications via these networks; and helping you analyze and survey what other organizations, industry players, and consumers are saying about topics relevant to your business.
Software developed to help company’s both large and small deal with these significant PR challenges is often as sophisticated as it is valuable. Today, we’ll be taking a look at seven of the leading PR marketing software packages, helping you make sense of what they each have to offer, and how they might help you stay on-brand, on-message, and up-to-speed in a world of fast-moving media.
We start with one of the leading PR marketing and analytics firms in the business. Cision has more than 65 years experience helping all manner of company’s communicate with stakeholders and consumers. They also help companies understand what consumers and media outlets are saying about them.
Today, Cision’s suite of professional tools covers practically every aspect of PR, all rooted in one of the broadest journalist, news outlet, and influencer databases in the business.
With Cision’s PR Newswire service, you can get access to more than 200,000 news rooms, more than 20,000 individual journalists, and thousands of websites and digital outlets.
Their media analytics services are also some of the most sophisticated money can buy, with tailored solutions to suit your specific industry, and a range of tools geared towards helping you monitor practically any platform and medium for keywords, alerts, and company-related topics. Social media, print journalism, live broadcasts, and more are all covered, helping you stay on top of what’s being said and by whom.
The company also provide hundreds of industry-specific media briefings to company leaders around the world each day, keeping businesses informed about which topics are trending and where public conversations are headed.
Monthly access to Cision’s core database and services starts at around $600/month, making it one of the most expensive on the market.
Brandpush offers a more specific service than some of their competitors. Rather than developing a full suite of PR marketing software tools, Brandpush focuses on the writing and distributing of press releases and news items to help businesses communicate with consumers.
They have an extensive roster of news outlets, websites, and media rooms through which to publish your story, as well as a team of professional human writers to craft the story with you. They guarantee to publish your article across a network of more than 200 sites, either via their ‘Mainstream’ news contact list or ‘Alternative’ news contact list, depending on which best suits your needs.
For a premium article writing package, in which Brandpush’s own team of marketing experts write and refine a press release based on your specifications and information, you can expect to pay around $250. There are cheaper options if you want to write the material yourself and simply have Brandpush act as a distributor.
I’ve been using Brandpush for about 6 months now, and I’m very happy with the results I’m getting. For just a couple of hundred dollars a month, I’m receiving thousands of dollars worth of backlinks for my and my clients websites.
Prowly’s AI-enabled media surveillance not only allows you to filter and search through topics that are relevant to you, it can also help identify the context and sentiment of content that’s being released, giving you a sense of public mood, consumer perspectives, and other important factors.
They also accompany their cutting-edge media trackers with intuitive, drag-and-drop design tools to help you craft sleek, professional press releases and media for your own use, ready to be embedded directly into emails before sending to an impressive array of journalist and media contacts.
Unlike many of their competitors, Prowly also have a relatively transparent, tiered pricing system advertised on their website. At the moment, their mid-range professional bundle comes in at $449 a month. They do offer a 7 day free trial, one of the few companies listed here to do so.
With several decades of PR experience under their belt, Meltwater offers an impressive suite of communication and analytics tools. Their media trackers allow you to instantly survey and grasp trending topics, allowing you to use unlimited keyword combinations and industry filters to hone in on the subjects relevant to you and your company.
Their software also allows you to establish and customize alerts for critical stories and breaking news that could prove pertinent to your business, with a constantly updating database of articles, social media posts, and news bulletins.
Meltwater also harnesses an impressive database of media contacts that can be filtered and searched through, helping you find and connect with journalists, bloggers, and influencers who are involved in conversations relevant to you. The software also makes it easy to reach out and contact individuals, news boards, and media outlets directly, helping streamline your press release process.
When you need to share information with colleagues, Meltwater’s easy to use PR dashboards and report generating functions are a handy way to condense and display the information you need.
Muck Rack advertises themselves as offering an all-in-one PR solution, from helping you track your competitors’ media presence, to helping you craft individualized messages and press releases for specific journalists and influencers.
Muck Rack aim to provide communication solutions that help you avoid sounding like you’ve just cc’d hundreds of people into a generalized press release. They’ve also developed tools to help you and your PR colleagues read from the same sheet, regardless of where in the world you all happen to be working from. Sophisticated activity tracking tools, including shared dashboards and the ability to assign responsibility for specific contacts to specific colleagues, can help ensure you’re not inadvertently stepping on each other’s toes or duplicating work.
As with many other premium PR software suites, Muck Rack also offer AI-enabled report generation, helping you create meeting-ready presentations, graphics, and newsletters in a few clicks.
Muck Rack also offer related tools for individual journalists, helping them track conversations and trending topics across media, as well as helping them keep their portfolio under one roof.
Muck Rack provides custom pricing based on your exact needs. The average price of a Muck Rack subscription is around $10,000 per year.
Smartreach has developed a software package designed to help you organize, track, and evaluate email marketing campaigns and other forms of ‘cold’ communication outreach.
They have a range of tools to help you pace communications to help guard against your messages ending up automatically in people’s spam folders, as well as email authentication tools to ensure you’re messages aren’t falling on defunct accounts. You can also run numerous campaigns simultaneously and have the software track which are proving most successful, based on a range of numerical factors such as response rates, sales data, and more.
Smartreach also integrate an AI generative text writing tool to help you craft press releases, newsletters, and promotional material before sending it out. Their email design tools can be used to introduce conditional formatting into your writing, allowing different text to appear depending on different recipient profiles or factors.
Smartreach offers a $49 per month ‘Sales Engagement’ package. ‘Agency’ and ‘Enterprise’ packages can also be negotiated for larger businesses and more complex marketing operations.
Agility PR has focused their software on helping you find and connect with journalists, media organizations, and news rooms, as well as helping you sift through what writers, influencers, and content creators are saying in real-time. This type of software is also sometimes referred to as ‘media and influencer targeting software’, versions of which can also be found as part of Cision, Meltwater, and Muck Water’s services.
An attractive feature of Agility PR’s interface is its intuitive design and easy-to-search functions. You can filter and comb through journalists and influencers based on their publishing mediums, their location and, crucially, the topics, keywords, and content they focus on. The database also includes detailed information pages for each contact, including estimated audience reach, publications, and contact details for when you want to reach out.
The media monitoring arm of Agility PR’s software also allows you to search for trending topics and keyword combinations, before using AI to suggest to you different related keywords. This can be a great way to spot trends or public conversations that you haven’t noticed yet.
When you need to present the information you’ve gathered to a team of colleagues, Agility PR makes it easy for you to collate and condense news clippings, media extracts, and other data into digestible presentations and report sheets.
The Evolution of PR Marketing Software
Public Relations has come a long way from press releases and media pitches. Today, PR campaigns encompass social media engagement, influencer partnerships, content marketing, and more. This complexity demands efficient tools to navigate the intricate PR landscape effectively. PR marketing software has evolved to address these needs, offering a range of features to assist PR professionals in achieving their goals.
Conclusion – Media Software is Changing the Game
Media and influencer targeting software has revolutionized the PR industry, offering indispensable tools for navigating the modern media landscape. With efficient media monitoring, analytics, and automation features, these platforms empower PR professionals to drive successful campaigns, build strong relationships with key stakeholders, and protect their brand’s reputation. As the digital world continues to evolve, PR software will remain a vital asset for PR teams looking to thrive in a competitive and dynamic environment.