The best analytics tools to measure your PR efforts
A collection of data analysis tools for modern PR teams
Public relations is a hard art to measure, but that doesn't mean it's impossible. Thanks to new digital mediums, there are a lot of great new PR solutions to help PR professionals measure things like:
- Media mentions
- Reach & impressions
- Sentiment analysis
- Newsroom traffic analytics
- Lead contributions from PR
So let's take a look at some of the best public relations tools for data analysis!
Let's start will the well-known, free behemoth. The beauty and the bane of Google Analytics is that it can reveal a lot of information about your website's performance.
You can track things like visitors, referrals from different channels, and conversion rates. You can also reveal demographic information about your visitors and see how they arrived to your site, how long they spent there, and compare data sets to previous periods. It also gives you an insight into who is linking to your site and can help flag earned media.
It can be as simple or as complicated as you want, but it does deliver on the numbers. You'll even be able to line up campaigns and create annotations so that you can attribute the real impact of each action you perform.
An added benefit is that you can use Google Analytics to get detailed feedback on the engagement of your newsroom and online press releases.
It may not be the prettiest thing in the world, but dang it's useful. It can also look a bit daunting is you're new to digital marketing (yes, the "m" word – but no one works in a silo these days!). Fortunately, Google has kindly provided its own beginner's guide to using the platform.
PR tools for monitoring & impact: Cision (TrendKite)
TrendKite was a pretty neat PR intelligence tool for many years – so much so, in fact, that it was assimilated into the PR monolith that is Cision in 2019. These days, you can find its remnants in the Analytics and Impact product offerings on Cision's site.
Thanks to TrendKite, Cision now lets you organize your data in a way that is more meaningful for public relations professionals. You're able to better visualize attribution (where your traffic comes from), media mentions, and the impact of SEO on your work.
Coverage Book is a simple way to create PR reports based on the performance of your campaigns – namely, media coverage. As we all know, tracking and reporting on coverage is one of the essential principles of public relations (if we want to prove our worth and get paid, that is).
The idea is simple. You take all your pieces of coverage and copy their links into Coverage Book. From there, the tool will generate a report, complete with coverage thumbnails, based on the material you provide. Their metrics include things like pieces of coverage, revenue, social shares, links attributed to coverage, new customers and online readership.
Meltwater is a heavy hitter in the world of PR analytics.
Their big media database makes them a leader when it comes to media mentions. They also have developed a set of tools that let you measure things like share of voice, website traffic, estimated potential reach and a whole lot more.
With more than 30 years' experience, CARMA provides 24/7 services in monitoring, measurement and evaluation solutions, as well as consultation services to help you create a solid communications strategy and cut out unnecessary spend.
The media monitoring part of CARMA is called CustomScoop and gives you an "all-in-one" overview of your online news and Twitter coverage in a 24/7 dashboard.
Falcon.io is a nifty social media marketing tool that specializes in social listening.
With this tool you can monitor your brand reputation, trends in your industry, your campaign performance, and see what people are saying about you on social media.
Brand24 is another media monitoring tool that will make your life a bit easier.
What Brand24 delivers really well is the sentiment analysis. They collect data and mentions from all over and give you a true idea of your reputation online. You can segment mentions and break things down by campaigns.
Last but not least, we have our campaign analytics built into Prezly. Prezly's Campaign Overview feature pairs nicely with many of the other tools mentioned above to help you get a direct picture of which media contacts in your PR CRM are the most engaged with your press releases or stories.
This helps you keep your contact lists in check by easily weeding out any dead emails, helps inform how you write your campaigns, and guides the way you follow up on pitches (more on that in our free guide to email pitching, complete with a strategy template and data from 16million pitches).
You can also use Prezly campaigns to report on your coverage using Prezly's coverage feature, which lets you upload mentions manually or use our API to plug your coverage provider straight into the tool and automate the entire process. Easy :)
Updated July 2023