Internet Marketing
Published April 04th, 2016 by

Manage Your Perceptions with Public Relations Software

Closely related to the huge field of marketing automation software is the class of software that deals with public relations management. Public relations management can be thought of as an extension of your company’s marketing efforts. It is just as vital to the survival of any organization as marketing itself.

Connecting with traditional media outlets can often be overlooked in the modern era, but it that is not prudent. Traditional media isn’t dead, and it’s not going anywhere. If an organization wants to be successful they have to have strategies and tactics in place to deal with and leverage traditional media outlets (i.e. newspapers, etc.). Of course, you need software that is also going to let you take advantage of all the popular digital media currently available. This functionality is essential and it should be seamless. The ability to analyze data and report out on it is also going to be critical. But perhaps we’re getting ahead of ourselves.

In this post we’re going to explore some of the functionality of this software to see how it can augment your business and help you manage your public relations campaign.

What Are The Core Features of Public Relations Management Software

It’s helpful to bottom out on the definition of public relations before we begiwhat is public relations softwaren. Public relations is the practice of managing the flow of information between some organization or individual and the public. In contrast to traditional marketing, which is generally performed with the goal of creating consumers of a product or service, public relations is meant to generate and protect brand awareness for an individual or business / organization.

Such a lofty goal will have many tasks associated with it, which is what comprises the actual practice of public relations management.  Modern software can help streamline this process and make life easy for the public relations manager. The end result for the individual or organization is organic good will in the eyes of the public that helps to make them a household name (ideally, of course).

One of the biggest functions of a public relations manager is writing content meant to cast their client in a positive light. This is accomplished by writing press releases and articles that are meant to generate positive buzz about their client. Of course, this content doesn’t exist in a vacuum. It needs to be distributed to multiple outlets to have maximum impact on public perception. The best public relations management software will allow for distribution across a variety of different channels.

For instance, Cision enables web & wire distribution. This means you can get your story (content) in front of many different outlets across the internet. This includes to local news outlets, national news outlets, and even prolific bloggers.  Similar to customer relationship management software, typically public relations management software includes email integration. This allows the PR manager to distribute information via email to a number of influencers. The best public relations management software will have features that enable it to circumvent spam filters, measure open rates (to quantify the effectiveness of the headline) as well as the capability to personalize emails to a specific individual.

One thing we should make clear is that by using this software you’re not just accessing a set of features. You’re also getting access to a network of outlets for your press release or content. News outlets and bloggers are in the business of publishing this information, so they naturally want to have a steady stream of material to publish. This is a symbiotic relationship between the content producers and the content distributers that the best public relations management software helps to facilitate.

This relationship is facilitated through the use of special databases.  These store the contact information of media influencers from around the continent. Easy access to this database is a critical feature for public relations management software. Of course, you want software that gives you access to all the popular social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. It should also have more traditional avenues of contact with top influencers, such as phone numbers, email, etc.

Another handy featpublic relations management softwareure is access to what are called editorial calendars. Many times an outlet will be planning on covering a particular topic, and that is the perfect time to distribute your press release. As part of this, you want to be on the lookout for software that gives you access to Help a Reporter Out (HARO), which has more than 40,000 journalists looking for news sources. In this way, the public relations management software acts as a sort of market to bring together content producers and content distributers. This is truly ground breaking for the public relations management firm, as it can help to organize all the potential distributors into one place. This is in contrast to keeping contacts on a rolodex (how 20th century) or in bulky spreadsheets.

Another facet of public relations management is what is called crisis management. While negative press about an individual or organization may not qualify as a catastrophe for most people, it is certainly a crisis for the organization or individual when potentially negative information comes to light. It is therefore critical to be able to monitor the “airwaves” for this information so that the public relations management firm can react in real time to brewing trouble.

The best public relations management software will help you facilitate this by monitoring social media for trending topics related to your client. This can be coupled with sentiment analysis to determine if the trends are positive or negative. After all, if there is Twitter trend to talk about your client in a positive light, that’s something you want to know but don’t want to interfere with.

This capability should extend to other avenues as well.  Television and broadcast are alive and well, with many millions of people watching television every day, just in North America alone. The ability to monitor video media for news about your client is critical. The best software lets you view coverage on up to 210 markets in the United States, encompassing 25,000 broadcast hours each day.

As we said above, traditional media is far from dead. It may have had to adapt to the modern era by going online, but it is still influential. PR software can monitor print media, including national and local newspapers. Also be on the lookout for software that gives you access to LexisNexis, which has a massive library of print publications.

Of course, no modern software would be complete without reporting and analytics capability. Public relations management software is no exception to this. The best PR software is going to have integrated functionality for conducting media analytics. These metrics can include sentiment analysis (very important) as well as prominence metrics and reach metrics. After all, you want to know if your press release was widely seen and well received.

Let us not forget the integration of social media analytics. This is a super critical feature, and is only going to increase in importance as the years go on. You want to know that your PR software can support your firm for years to come, so I would argue that any software that doesn’t come with social media analytics shouldn’t make the cut.

As a subset of performance analysis, another popular feature is going to be benchmarking. Your press releases don’t happen in a vacuum, and you are in competition with other PR firms across the country. There is nothing in such short supply as attention these days, so you want to know how much of the public’s attention you are capturing vs. your competitors.

While these features are directly related to how the PR software can help your team do their job, they are only part of the picture. Another core function you want is collaboration. It’s likely that your PR team is comprised of quite a few people, so getting them to work together effectively is going to be a key challenge that the best PR management software can help you overcome. You want the ability for team members to share content as well as the capability to inform team members and key stakeholders to help create alignment between everyone involved.

Another fundamental feature is reporting. While we mentioned analytics above, it goes without saying that you want the ability to take all that data and put it into a report that is easy for your team to consume. This will help your team to gauge the efficacy of their efforts and see what improvements need to be made. It’s also great for communicating success and opportunities to your stakeholders (i.e. your client). The best PR management software will help you to create illustrated reports in just a few clicks, so that you can communicate results quickly and effectively.


These are some of the most essential features you want to be on the lookout for. We’ve covered integration with social media, various databases of contact information (across multiple platforms), analytics and reporting functionality as well as distribution functions to let you get your message out as broadly and quickly as possible.

It’s pretty clear that public rpr softwareelations management software can help you by being a force multiplier for your team. It lets each individual accomplish the work of two people, so you can get twice as much done in a fraction of the time. You are going to want to look into the various software packages available to find one that is right for your organization. This is a very personal decision, but fortunately we at Crowd Reviews have compiled a list of the best public relations management software currently available. This software is ranked by users such as yourself, so you can get an unbiased picture of what is going to help your organization.

We hope that this has been helpful in your search. In future articles we may cover some of the software in depth so that you can get a brief overview of how each software vendor stacks up with respect to their fulfillment of the core functionality we outlined above.

Until then, stay tuned for our next article. We hope this has been helpful!



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