PRToolfinder

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  • Aggregation Engines (link blogs)

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    Aggregators are local software or web applications that collect syndicated web content such as news headlines, blogs, podcasts, and vlogs in a single location for easy viewing. Some are user-driven , some are edited for topic or quality. All can become important channels of exposure for your clients’ news, blogs, podcasts and videocasts.

  • Article Marketing

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    In article marketing, businesses produce articles bylined by qualified executives or staff members, and related to their particular industry. A primary style for the articles includes a bio box and byline (collectively known as the resource box) about the business These articles are then distributed and published on the Internet or through traditional media outlets. Each signed article contains references and contact information for the author. Well-written articles are released for free distribution with the potential of increasing search rankings as well as the author’s credibility as an authority within the market. Articles can also attract new clients. Most article marketing resources are free.

  • Awards Programs and Monitoring

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    A wide variety of tools (including the media suites) can assist in maintaining awards programs and finding client opportunities appropriate to a client’s markets or interests. Some are oriented more toward awards program organizers than marketing or PR users, and may range from help in organizing specific events to managing entire industry awards programs. The search services are particularly useful to marketing and PR professions who need to identify market-appropriate awards that, if won, can be displayed on client web sites and publicized through news releases and marketing materials.

  • Blog Creation Tools

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    There are many types of blogs – from text to news to video and photo to specific project blogs. They range from the personal to entertainment, political, business, technology, you name it. Tools for creating blogs are equally varied. Which tool is most appropriate depends on what features you need. Factors to consider in selecting a tool include ease of use, special capabilities. Can it create or publish video clips? Audio clips? Linked or embedded images? Is image placement control possible and do you need it? Do you want a local tool or web-based, broad publishing capability to single or multiple sites? What degree of publishing automation do you need, and how much technical expertise does the tool require?

  • Blog Monitoring Tools (RSS-based Search Engines)

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    There are many social media monitoring tools that include blogs. Blog-specific monitoring tools may provide specific site ratings in terms of user views or time spent viewing, or rankings by selectable criteria such as traffic or links in from other locations, or may zero in on specific areas of interest. Most searching tools now also provide keyword-based reports or alerts.

  • Blogger List and other Blog Resources

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    In July 2014 we added this new category to make it easier for people to find “blogger only” lists. As noted above in media contact databases, most of these contact database tools include bloggers even if they also sell the separate lists. For those who want to focus solely on the blogosphere we felt that the resources had grown to such an extent that they deserved their own category. The new category includes supportive tools, ranging from social networks connecting bloggers with content creators and the valuable contact lists targeting bloggers writing about topics you care about.

  • Content marketing

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    The lines between paid, earned and owned media are blurring more and more. And today, storytelling has a much bigger stage. There has been great evolutionin the PR industry – bloggers, social media, new media, the increase in online advertising & the decline of print advertising and fewer and fewer editors making pitching stories a real challenge. Enter content marketing. In brief: Marketing Automation Tools are the software you can implement to DO content marketing. But content marketing requires content – good content – and this represents a huge opportunity for PR professionals to take their storytelling expertise direct to our client’s potential customers. We provide a listing of popular content marketing technologies now in the prtoolfinder database – many that have programs for PR agencies to implement to help their clients

  • Editorial Calendars Journalist Networks

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    In May 2014 we updated this category from “Editorial Calendars” to “Editorial Calendars & Jouranlist Networks” to account for the new and useful tools that provide additional ways to find planned stories that complement the traditional ‘EdCals.” Both are the key to turning data in your media contact list into media exposure for your clients. If all you need is information on who is writing what and their pitch deadlines, this category will help identify potential resources both paid and free. EdCals also alert you as to when publications intend to cover specific topics, providing you with an opportunity to have your organization or client considered for inclusion. These are tools that focus specifically on just editorial calendars and stories editors are looking to write in places you might not know to look…and will save you lots of valuable time.

  • Electronic Media Kits;Online press rooms

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    Online press rooms are specialized distribution services for trade shows and net-oriented news and information. Because they are digital and networked, news items or entire press kits for visiting journalists can be accessed and tracked. Access tracking tells you and your clients which editors have retrieved information, and journalists appreciate their ease of access to information, images, and other data to help them get their stories in by deadline. Outsourcing your online pressroom can also increase available time to focus on strategy rather than infrastructure.

  • Market Research

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    Any organization offering a product or service needs to stay aware of its marketplace. Market research products and services help companies, and PR professionals, stay on top of competing products and services, market saturation levels, competitive pricing data, current and historical trends, new or fading niches. All can become key factors in setting marketing and PR strategy. Huge organizations will sometimes mount their own focus groups or targeted polls to give them some of this information, but for most, it is more effective to rely on outside sources that specialize in this area. Because the need is near-universal, market research is a crowded field. Some players specialize in general research and analytics, others in more tightly focused areas such as monitoring competitive landscapes or specific market movements. Some vendors listed here also are listed under Media Monitoring & Measurement where appropriate.

  • Media Contact Databases

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    There are many ways to build a media list and if that’s all you need, this will help you to discover and evaluate resources that can help. Data will customarily include up-to-date media and blogger contacts, including names and contact information, with notes about specific editors and contributors at media outlets of all types, including areas of interest and such helpful information as to when to and when not to contact them, required lead times, and so forth. Of all professional PR tools, the media contact list is among the most essential. These services can help create customized media lists organized by publication, market, beat, or other criteria, to augment the practitioner’s personal lists.

  • Media Monitoring & Measurement

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    Companies and marketing/PR operatives need to know both the direct results of their own efforts and what others are saying about a client and its market. Media is now split into well understood segments: traditional print and broadcast outlets, and Web-enabled outlets like blogs and the various social networks. Different products and services focus on different areas and it continues to evolveThe range of possibilities is broad. The secret for PR operatives is to “key in” to the specifics most needed by a particular client or within an industry specialty. (Since the lines continue to blur between traditional and social media, see the Social Media Monitoring category as well.

  • Media Suites

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    Media Suites are broad solutions that integrate multiple tools and provide 24/7 access to PR information and communication channels. They may use a single large application or an integrated set of smaller applications. These suites simplify gathering or distributing strategic information while managing public perceptions and the reputation of a client, organization, executive, prominent person, or product. On the high end, a suite may automate, track and manage global campaigns, as well as track or provide standard PR functions such as editorial calendars, awards, speaking opportunities, contact and media list management, media monitoring and campaign ROI data analytics. Most will access and monitor established social networks as part of the communications process. Some media suite vendors also provide standalone “point solutions” like access only to media contact databases. These standalone solutions are also included in their appropriate categories.

  • Newswires & Press Release Distribution Services

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    The backbone of traditional PR, press release distribution services like Business Wire, PR Newswire, and Vocus/PRWeb remain staples for “getting the word out” to media of interest; even given the explosion in social media. The larger services provide focused channels for specific interest sectors such as technology or consumer goods and region. In the meantime, a host of newer services have emerged to compete at a much lower price point with specific offerings and we wanted to make sure these were included in this category. It really depends on what your objectives are with your news.

  • Pinging Tools

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    Ping tools are used in blogging to notify servers of changed content – a “push” notification method for updated material. Blog publishing sites also use ping tools to let subscribers know of updated content for their subscriptions. The broader a client’s exposure within the social media “cloud,” the more likely they are to be noticed over the surrounding noise. That makes pinging tools important for optimizing the results of social media initiatives. They help ensure a client’s news gets listed promptly and consistently on social bookmarking sites, social news sites, social networks, free blog sites, social content sharing sites and any other ping-responsive content site.

  • Podcast Monitoring, Search & Directories

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    Tools for podcast monitoring and searching range from watching for key spoken words and phrases in podcasts, to search-plus-hosting services. . Some software allows users to subscribe to, download and store podcasts, and will notify of new episodes which they will store for later listening. If podcasting is a regular promotional tool for your client, any of these tools can be useful.

  • Podcast Recording Tools

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    Podcasts are sequential or episodic audio or video files downloaded by listeners or viewers. They can be accessed on the downloading PC or transferred to a portable device such as an iPod. Audio podcasts are generally distributed as standard MP3 files while video podcasts may use a variety of formats. They are generally published using RSS or Atom, making them a type of RSS feed, as well as through links in blogs and other Web properties. In addition to usability and cost, features to consider when selecting a podcast rerecording system include whether the recordings are made locally by your client or via a browser. Do you need additional effects such as musical intros and exits or editability either online or locally? What are their publication feed creation and distribution methods?

  • RSS Feed creators

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    RSS and Atom feeds are forms of Web syndication that add immediacy and reach to a client’s Internet presence. They can extend awareness to the growing number of people who are unwilling to provide their email addresses for newsletters. RSS feeds can also publish to other web sites the display your content as a means of keeping their own sites “alive,” making them channels for free advertising as well as increased news dissemination. For clients who issue more than only occasional news alerts and releases, who allow or even maintain employee blogs or who have other frequently changing web content, RSS feeds can be an invaluable way to extend the reach and penetration of their content.

  • RSS Feed readers

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    The innumerable RSS feed aggregators or “readers” include both standalone software and integrations into browsers or other applications such as email clients. Some are free or licensed as open source, others are proprietary. Feed formats they can display may include RSS and its cousin Atom as well as podcasts or live streams. They are available for all major operating systems, including flavors of Unix and Linux. Display formats and specific features vary.

  • Social Media Monitoring

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    Social media monitoring services are the networked counterparts of what we traditionally called clipping services. While still evolving stage, they are now widely used first-level sifters of the petabytes of data flowing into and through social media nets. As with clipping services, the challenge with such services is to be inclusive enough whilei avoiding irrelevant detail. Some handle the data flow overload by tuning their reports over time, using the customer’s own responses to hits to tighten focus for the account. Others may provide more restrictive or user-tunable filters, or focus on specific channels.

  • Social Media Networks And Tools

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    Everything is social today and a represents an evolving class of networked services that enable Web-centric interaction between individuals, allowing them to share information of any sort. Here you’ll find the most popular that are not mentioned elsewhere. As information dissemination channels, these outlets gain great effectiveness and power, by amplifying the effects of viral distribution modes. Social media networks have proven to be powerful tools for publishing news, views and information and for reaching out directly to a specific audience or community. This category of specialized and ad-hoc social networks continues to grow as new tools emerge and evolve. Expect more segmentation here in future. Feel free to recommend new categories!

  • Speaking Opportunities/Thought Leadership

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    Securing a speaking opportunity at a convention or trade show, participating on an expert panel and having your position cited in an article ‑ all are “thought leadership” opportunities that can greatly increase a client’s credibility and influence. To find them can take hours of searching through individual websites. A tool to help automate this process will save many hours and, more importantly, discover more opportunities than you could on your own. This category includes sources for expert databases where your expert/client can be “found” by editors needing an informed opinion or quote, and show speaking opportunities filed by event planners seeking thought leaders to speak either on panels or in specific sessions.

  • Tools to Shorten URLS

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    As Web-based information publishing and sharing expands, a user’s ability to access your client’s important information securely from anywhere can be hampered by excessively long links. With the explosion of Twitter and the character limitations, these become quite useful when tweeters want to share links with followers. There are many free Web services that will provide short links that bounce to your news.

  • Video/TV Search Engines And Monitoring Tools

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    Some general search engines have specialized videocast sections, other video searching services focus narrowly on video or audio-video areas. Factors to consider include reach, cost, submission policies if any, and ranking criteria.

  • Videocasting Tools

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    Videocasting (or vodcasting) is a specialized form of podcast, delivering video clips on demand and distributed, like podcasts, through RSS or Atom feeds. Videocasts can be streamed or downloaded by the viewer. Some videocasting services are well known to the public – YouTube and Google Video, for example – but the available range of publishers is quite broad. Factors to consider include the required platform to produce, level of polish required, output formats and resolution (and consequent file sizes), and more. Video continues to evolve and is extremely popular and effective. The category also links to a site with a fine list of video production tools.