I’ve been tinkering of late with several tools for PR pros, and thought I’d share my observations. No I don’t intend to extoll the purported PR value of Pinterest. My ears did perk when I learned that the hyperbolic social-pinning site reportedly is now the biggest traffic driver to women’s magazine websites. Mashable’s Lauran Indvik notes:
“Beginning this summer, Pinterest became the top social referrer for marthastewartweddings.com and marthastewart.com, sending more traffic to both properties than Facebook and Twitter combined.”
Not too shabby. Still, all those faddish pieces on Pinterest for PR have me scratching my head…for now. Instead, I took a look at three PR-centric apps: GroupHigh, ToutApp and Muckrack Pro, all of which operate as subscription models with each tackling a different dimension of the “earned” piece of the media equation.
GroupHigh describes itself as:
a “blog outreach solution” that “provides a simple, yet powerful platform for firms that build and manage relationships with bloggers. Our clients don’t build spreadsheets of blog data; GroupHigh automates the research of SEO, Social, and Blog-Related statistics for them…”
The site set out to catalogue, rank, and make keyword searchable more than 1.3 million blogs in the U.S., Canada and the UK. Its engine gives the user a tool to find (and engage – yes contact info too where available) those bloggers who often are missing or have incomplete info in the large media databases like Cision or Vocus.
Also, at my urging, the company recently cast a wider net to capture bloggers at mainstream news outlets to its already substantive database of independent bloggers. As for the name, your guess is as good as mine. (Pass the bong?) Possible competitor: Blogdash.
ToutApp describes itself as:
“an email management platform that allows users to create and save email shortcuts and track when recipients open email.”
For any PR person left in the lurch wondering about the fate of his or her perfect email pitch (that would be all of us), it is a revelation. The browser-based app lets you create an email pitch template, send it, and track whether the recipient viewed it, and if so, how many times and from what ISP and browser.
It’s not fool proof. I’ve had replies from reporters I’ve pitched whose views Tout never registered. Still, if it’s a read you want, Tout provides some relief — for better or worse. The app, btw, was incubated in the 500 Startups accelerator program and includes Esther Dyson and Dave McClure as investors. Possible competitor: Silverpop.
MuckRack Pro has access to Twitter’s firehose going back much longer than average Joes like you or me. Furthermore, Muckrack, founded by the same company that started Listorious and The Shorty Awards, focuses exclusively on big-time (i.e., mainstream) media and their journalists who are active on Twitter.
The site tracks, by topic, what thousands of reporters are saying or linking to. So if you’re looking to learn in real time what reporters are tweeting about a company, client, issue or anything else for that matter, this is the place for you to search. It also has the ability to push tweets, by keyword, your way. Possible competitor: Bottlenose, though not exactly.