What are PR tools & how can I make them work to my advantage?

In short, public relations (PR) tools are very cost-effective, and often give you a greater degree of control than more broadly targeted advertising campaigns. By using proven PR tools and activities, you can promote positive attitudes and behaviours towards your business that will help convert interested consumers into customers.

Here are the major four PR tools that PR professionals can now use to keep up with the ever-changing industry and ensure story success.

PR tools that actually work

MediaHQ is the all-in-one PR tool.
Our sleek and easy to use system gives you everything you need to make the news.

MediaHQ is the one-stop media intelligence PR tool. In one place you can build media lists, distribute press releases, pitch your story and read press release reports. MediaHQ will transform the way you work, making sharing your news instant and hassle free. Communications teams of all shapes and sizes benefit from MediaHQ.

Media Database

An often forgotten & under utilised PR tool. A great media database should have all of the contact details of the journalists you want to contact. You should be able to search by topic, location and sector to find the right journalists for your story. If your story is a tech story based in Wales you don’t want to send it to a sports journalist in Scotland. Filtering out your journalists by topic and location saves you this embarrassment. 

From these results, you should be able to easily build a specific media contacts list full of the journalists who want to hear your story. Better still, a high-quality media database will have pre-built media lists on a range of topics. All you have to do is copy over the list and edit as you see fit. A big advantage of using this approach is the list may have journalists in it that you might not have thought of, widening your reach and increasing the likelihood of your story getting picked up.

 

Press Release Distribution Service

Gone are the days of sending journalists press releases one by one via email. Today press release distribution services allow you to send your story to multiple lists of journalists in a few simple clicks. This not only saves time but gives you the confidence of knowing your press release is going where it’s intended. This truly is a must-have PR tool. 

A good press release distribution service should also allow you to schedule your press releases. If you want to ensure your press release sits at the top of a journalists email when they start their day you should be able to schedule it so that it is sent early in the morning without rising at the crack of dawn. You should be able to send press releases with minute accuracy at any time of the day or night making this PR tool a diamond amongst all others in a PR experts utility kit. 

media contacts database

Press Release Reports

Sending your press release marks a new stage of your campaign. You’ve done all the creative brainstorming, planned out your execution, written your press release, prepped your spokespeople and found the right journalists to target. Now it’s time to follow up and ensure your story gets the coverage it deserves.

A few minutes after sending your press release you will be able to see exactly who has received it, whether it has bounced or not, who has opened it and how many times and who has left it unread. A great reporting system will constantly update these stats so you will have consistent and up-to-date information.

You can use this system to tailor your follow up outreach. Step in MediaHQ. 

 

GDPR Compliance 

On May 25 2018, GDPR came into force and with it came a change to the way PR and communication professionals reached out to the media.

As GDPR now enforces a “proof of consent” rule for all data you collect, the old practice of obtaining email addresses from your predecessors or keeping contacts for years on Excel sheets has become an offence under the new EU regulation. 

GDPR regulations are putting more emphasis on respecting people’s data which means PR pros need to be more careful about who and how they contact journalists. GDR compliance is a hidden PR tool. Blanket emailing irrelevant press releases is a sure way to have journalists complain to you and demand that they are removed from your list. Add compliance to your arsenal & ensure your PR tool kit is GDPR friendly. 

In order to keep contacting journalists and getting stories into the media communications professionals need to use a system that is GDPR compliant. One that keeps you, the journalists and the data protection officers happy.

MediaHQ

Not to toot our own horns or anything but MediaHQ is home to Ireland’s largest media contacts database. It lets you schedule press releases to send from your email address to any publication in Ireland and the UK.

The database features the details of thousands of journalists, producers, editors and researchers, and is constantly updated. This means you can target the reporters that are most relevant to your stories. Who said sending out press releases was tiresome? MediaHQ is making the most of your time and talents.

If you think there is a PR tool that is vital to story success and is missing from our list, let us know. You can reach us on our social media channels @mediahqnews on Twitter, MediaHQ.com on Facebook and MediaHQ on LinkedIn.

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