Using Internet to Optimize PR
- Reprinted with permission of author:
Technology Corner: Using the Internet to Optimize Your PR Efforts
By John Heineman
If you are like most PR professionals, you've probably become pretty comfortable using the Internet to support and manage your PR efforts, from distributing online press releases, to running website press pages to using email communication. But perhaps there are some tools, tactics, techniques and best practices you have yet to take advantage of.
A Brief Review, Some of the More Traditional Internet PR Tools�
Internet Wire Services
Internet Wire services offer distribution of your press release to both traditional and online media (websites, newsgroups, etc.). These services range in price from FREE (www.prweb.com) to paid, and include large traditional offline providers like PRWire (www.prwire.com), to niche market service providers like URLWire (www.urlwire.com) - who specialize in distribution to targeted groups or markets. Internet wire services can be extremely effective in getting your release posted on most major news sites, and in expanding distribution to targeted 2nd tier news distributors, such as news groups and content focused, industry / market oriented websites.
Just like traditional clipping services, online clipping services (www.factiva.com), look to track and provide feedback on where your content is appearing on the Internet and to keep you abreast of relevant competitor or industry news that may impact your PR efforts. Online clipping services offer data in numerous formats, from online, to email (text and html), to PDF format (showing web page clips in a presentation form) - which can be quite nice when presenting the fruits of your labor to employers or clients. Clipping services can provide an effective way to track where your news is appearing online, to monitor competitors, and to gather useful stats and content to add to your website's press pages.
Media Communication Management Software
As the Internet and email has become a standard platform used by most writers, editors, analysts and news sources. Media communication management software has become a key component for many PR professionals. Companies like MediaMap (www.mediamap.com) can help simplify the work associated with maintaining a media database, defining and accessing targeted lists of writers, editors and analysts, reviewing editorial calendars across industries and media, monitoring and responding to queries from journalists looking for information, quotes or experts or analyzing campaign performance.
Some of the Lesser Known Online Tactics & Techniques�
While you may be familiar with many of the major online tools available to PR professionals, here are a few of the lesser known tactics and techniques you might want to incorporate into your Internet PR efforts.
Maximizing Press Releases & Stories for Search Engine Placement
Did you know the majority of new users that visit a website, come as a result of search engine searches, and most media use search engines to conduct a large portion of their research? Did you know your press releases, case studies, whitepapers and informational articles can be listed in search engines, and there are ways to improve where they show up when someone does a search relating to your content. While the details of search engine optimization are far to detailed to cover here, you may want to talk with an Internet communication consultant, and take advantage of this secondary objective (getting your press content posted on search engines), when publishing and distributing press releases on the internet. Press releases and story content that show up on search engines can increase media awareness and consumer traffic to any website, long after a story or release has run.
Using Email Tracking, Monitoring & Analysis Tools to Improve Pitch Opportunities
Do you use the power of email tracking and monitoring in your PR efforts? Would it help you when you send a press release or story/idea pitch, to your media list, to know who opened the email, who viewed any supporting links, how many times they did it or when? Some PR pro's have discovered that using email tracking and monitoring can be an effective way to target in on warm media prospects (those who have shown some reading interest in an email release or story pitch). Knowing who has reviewed your pitch or press release, and when they did it, can be a powerful way to determine who to follow-up with by phone, or further communications. Email communication software providers like ClickNDrop (www.clickndrop.com) give you the ability to add email intelligence to your PR push communication efforts.
Expanding Your Online Distribution with Content Sharing & Syndication
Have you written a useful, informational article or heartwarming human interest story that covers a problem your company solves. Unlike the offline world of publishing where everyone seems to demand unique content, the online publishing world is about information sharing. There are literally thousands of sites, forums, newsgroups and newsletters, representing millions of people, looking for useful content that will benefit their audiences. Content-oriented websites and e-newsletters offer a unique opportunity for companies to expand awareness in a controlled editorial fashion. Why not take advantage of this FREE editorial platform that exists on the net? Not only can you submit to individual sites and newsletters that provide content to your audience, but you can submit to content syndication sites that will help distribute your content as well. To get started simply visit a search engine and type in "Article Submission" or something more descriptive in relation to you topic like "human resource article submission". Sharing content on the internet is a great way to benefit from the editorial content that you control.
John Heineman is the managing partner at The LeadGen Group, a Marketing and Communication Agency based in San Francisco, CA. His career spans more than 15 years, working with industry leaders like Microsoft, Adobe and Guerrilla Marketing International. To learn more about the LeadGen Group visit www.leadgengroup.com, or to learn more about presentations, on this, or other e-communication topics, visit LeadGen Group Presentations.
To submit a Technology Corner idea, contact John at jheineman@...
- A very useful and informative document has
been shared with the PRBytes membership.
A number of ideas that will improve the marketing
and management efforts of entrepreneurs
and firms in public relations marketing and
management are covered. One resource,
the database, is omitted from this coverage.
It is an expensive but powerful tool and
source for competitor intelligence, industry
information, analysis and statistics, and for
theoretical research or case studies on topics
relevant to all aspects of public relations work
and the industries and fields in which public
relations work is provided.
>Did you know your press releases,case studies, whitepapers and informational
articles can be listed in search engines, and
there are ways to improve where they show
up when someone does a search relating to
Too paraphrase, did you know that case studies,
whitepapers and informational articles are an
embarrassment of riches in the many
databases provided by commercial databanks?
Did you know that, unlike search engines that
permit only simple brief search statements,
the search capabilities of the more powerful
search software databanks permit very complex
multistep searching that allows for the use of
synonomous groups of terms, combining different
search steps with such synonomous lists of terms
and searching in specific fields like subject
headings or article titles to focus results.
Have you heard of databases like ABI Inform,
Periodical Abstracts, Business Source Premier,
Business and Management Practices, Business and
Industry, Business Dateline, EIU Market Research,
Econlit, Gale Group Marketing & Advertising
Reference Service, Mergent Company News
Reports, PR Newswire (1987-Apr 1999),
PR Newswire (May 1999-present),
Public Opinion Online (POLL), and
Wilson Business Abstracts Full Text.
Could I get you to believe that this list is just the tip
of the business related iceberg and that databases
cover all major subject fields including science and
the social sciences?
Have a look at these web pages:
These are just two of a substantial number
of databanks that provide a substantial menu of
databases. Consider one such database,
ABI Inform, as a case in point:
ABI/INFORM includes details on virtually every
aspect of business, including company histories,
competitive intelligence, and new product
development. ABI/INFORM contains bibliographic
citations and 25-150 word summaries of articles
appearing in professional publications, academic
journals, and trade magazines published worldwide.
The full text of articles is included for about 550 of
the 1,000 journals. There is no print equivalent to
ABI/INFORM indexes and abstracts significant
articles from more that 800 business and management
periodicals. Full text is included for many of the
articles added from January 1991 forward. Twenty-five
percent of the journals are published outside the
United States. Fifty percent of the
journals, ABI/INFORM's core titles, are indexed and
abstracted virtually cover-to-cover. Over 1,200
publications have been used as sources since the file
was created in 1971.
I have published in various journals and online on
websites various articles about database searching.
The citations to the published articles and the full text of
others may be viewed at this URL.
For those on a very tight budget, it may be beneficial
to know that a growing number of states in the United States
provide through the public libraries in house access to and
remote access to a selection of databases from some of the
databank vendors. Check with the reference librarians in
the public library in your area to determine what you have
access to. There is a learning curve in the use of databases
and databanks that is much more complex than that for using
search engines and databases and databanks are substantially
different from each other.
I hope that members of this list will find databases a useful
group of tools for their research, intelligence and information
(215) 204 - 4584
- While the article is most interesting, I personally think PR
professionals should not overlook the power of blogs on the Internet
and their power to build and persuade public opinion.
Bloggers are the opinion leaders and early adapters of the Internet,
give it a year, and blogged news sites may be as common place on the
tip of the American tongue as say... the Drudge Report.
Reaching blog owners should soon prove to be a successful approach
to online PR.
the Blog Search Engine