If you’re starting a public relations strategy for your business there are some PR tools of the trade you should be aware of. No, we are not talking about using a hammer and nails, but using a range of specialised tools to make PR easier and more effective for your business.
Simple tools such as spell check and a content calendar can help you save time and organise your PR efforts more efficiently and effectively.
Here are a few PR tools of the trade you can use today.
Media lists: It would be difficult and time consuming to send out a media release without first creating a media list. A media list documents the key media contacts that would be interested in your media release. These contacts can include journalists, producers, bloggers, freelancers and editors. They could be in your industry or the industries your clients are in. You can buy media lists from companies like AAP of Media Monitors or create your own by doing some research.
Google alerts: It’s almost impossible to check every media outlet on the internet each day for media coverage of your business. However, you can make the process easier by using Google Alerts. Google Alerts is a free service which will send you an email alert when a new web page, article, blog or video is uploaded to the internet that matches your search terms.
You can set up Google Alerts for your business, key spokesperson, clients, competitors or even your key messages. This will help you to find online media coverage as well as mentions of your business in the media.
Google Alerts also help you to be aware of current stories or articles about your industry in the media. However it often misses some media mentions, so they shouldn’t be your only form of media research.
Social media scheduling tools: An easy way to manage your social media accounts is by using scheduling tools such as TweetDeck. These tools allow you to save time on social media by scheduling your posts. For example TweetDeck allows you to create your tweets and chose different times to automatically post them during the day. This means you could spend half an hour on Monday morning setting up all your posts for the rest of the week.
Spell check: A major part of any PR strategy is writing content for articles, blogs, websites, projects and even emails. It’s important your grammar and spelling is perfect in any piece of writing you publish or send to a journalist. Spell check is a great tool to help you find any words you may have misspelled. Make sure your spell check is set to Australian spelling.
Spell check is not 100 per cent reliable so make sure to proof read your writing for spelling and grammatical mistakes or even ask a colleague to read over it.
Content calendar: If you are writing lots of articles or blog posts it’s a good idea to use a content calendar to help you plan your topics. A content calendar can be as simple as an excel document listing your story ideas with the week you will write them. This tool can save you time and effort in coming up with new article topics. It will also help you to align your topics with what’s happening in your business. For instance if you are an accounting firm, you can plan to write an article about tax planning before the end of the financial year to give clients time to implement your tips.
Electronic devices: As part of any PR strategy you need to be constantly checking the news, responding to emails, managing social media platforms and writing new content. A great idea is to carry around a portable electronic device such as an iPhone or an iPad with access to the internet. For example, on an iPad you can access documents on the go, use it for presentations, or check emails while travelling.
You may not find these tools in a hardware store but they are essential for any PR strategy.
Sydney Public Relations Agency, CP Communications provides specialist media, traditional and online PR strategies that get amazing results. Contact us today. For more great tips visit our website www.cpcommunications.com.au.