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Muck Rack vs Cision vs Prezly: Which one is best? [2024]

Muck Rack vs Cision vs Prezly: Which one is best? [2024]

We compare the features, pricing, and overall value of each platform to help you choose the one that best fits your business.

With so many PR platforms to choose from, which one do you go with? 

To make your decision easier, and see which tool aligns best with your PR strategy, we’ve done a deep dive into three popular tools: Muck Rack, Cision, and Prezly.

In short, here’s how Muck Rack, Cision, and Prezly all stack up: 

  • Muck Rack: comes with a robust media database and targeted pitching capabilities. It’s best for those looking to discover new journalists for sending their pitches. 
  • Cision: has the most extensive media database and broadest distribution reach. It's ideal for those aiming to maximize their reach.
  • Prezly: stands out for its user-friendly approach and emphasis on building meaningful media connections. It’s a great fit if you’re looking for an all-in-one tool to implement a modern, relationship-driven PR strategy.

Feature

Cision

Muck Rack

Prezly

PR distribution & outreach

★★★☆☆ Good distribution, limited outreach tools

★★★★☆ Great outreach tools

★★★★★ Excellent outreach, relationship focus

Media monitoring & analytics

★★★☆☆ Solid media monitoring, full analytics

★★★★☆ Strong monitoring and analytics

★★★☆☆ Actionable analytics. Monitoring via integrations

Media database & CRM

★★★★☆ Huge database, CRM-like tools

★★★☆☆ Solid database, CRM-like tools

★★★★☆ Top-notch CRM, relationship focus. No media database offered

Press release creator & newsrooms

★★☆☆☆ Basic press release creator, custom newsrooms needed

★☆☆☆☆ No newsroom creation tools

★★★★★ Easy newsroom and press release creation tools

Pricing

★☆☆☆☆ Not clear, likely expensive

★☆☆☆☆ Not public, expected to be high

★★★★★ Transparent, affordable pricing

User experience

★★☆☆☆ Powerful, but complex

★★★★☆ Easy and efficient interface

★★★★★ Simple and straightforward tools

Customer support

★★★☆☆ Helpful but slow support

★★★★★ Responsive support

★★★★★ Exceptional, helpful support

 

 

For more details, including customer reviews, keep reading below where we’ll dissect each platform’s features, pricing, usability, and customer support. 

Prezly – software for modern PR teams

  • Write & publish brand stories in an online newsroom

  • Send email campaigns, pitches & newsletters

  • Manage all your contact lists in a single CRM, with easy import & export

  • Measure performance to see who's engaging with your stories

Feature comparison

Let's get right into the core of these platforms – their features. This is where you’ll really get to see what Muck Rack, Cision, and Prezly can do for your PR efforts.

What features does Muck Rack have?

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  • Media Database: Offers access to over 250,000 contacts. Ideal for targeted media outreach​​, though users have noted that their data isn’t always 100% accurate.
  • Press Release Capabilities and Outreach: While Muck Rack doesn’t have press release creation tools or distribution capabilities, it allows you to create and send personalized pitches to journalists directly from their app, streamlining the outreach process​​.
  • Media Monitoring and Analytics: Provides media monitoring capabilities to track news and mentions. The analytics features help in understanding media hits and journalist engagement, although some users find the tracking to be less comprehensive compared to other tools​​​​.

What features does Cision have?

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  • Media Database: Boasts the largest media database on the market with over 1.4 million contacts.
  • Press Release Capabilities and Outreach: Offers tools for both creating and distributing press releases. Also has outreach features and the ability to create a newsroom with (though you’ll need to hire their team to develop it)
  • Media Monitoring and Analytics: Provides media monitoring across various channels, with analytics tools that provide in-depth insights into campaign performance and brand mentions​​​​.

What features does Prezly have?

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  • Media Database and CRM Functionality: Prezly’s approach is unique. You cannot buy a media database or contacts from them, instead they help you focus on relationship-building. This comes to light through its unique CRM functionality, designed to make managing and nurturing relationships with media contacts​​ a breeze.
  • Press Release Capabilities and Outreach: Known for its no-code online newsroom builder and press release creator, Prezly also supports multimedia content and translations. Its outreach tools are robust and designed for effective communication and segmented audience targeting​​​​.
  • Media Monitoring and Analytics: Prezly doesn’t have native media monitoring; however, it can easily integrate with third-party monitoring tools (e.g. Meltwater, Kantar, Knewing, Coveragebook). Its analytics are also more streamlined, providing clear, actionable insights on campaigns, pitches, and newsroom engagement, without overwhelming users with excessive data​​.

In summary

Each platform comes with its own set of strengths (and weaknesses) in terms of features. Muck Rack is all about targeted media outreach and effective distribution, but lacks press release creation tools. Cision offers a massive database and comprehensive press release capabilities. 

Prezly, shines in being the all-in-one tool to help you create engaging press materials and build meaningful media relationships. While it doesn’t have a media database, this is for good reason. 

Side-note: Why Prezly doesn’t support media databases

We’ve now mentioned a few times that Prezly doesn’t offer media databases (and that this is actually a good thing). Let’s pause for a quick second here to explain a bit more.

With the rise of digital and social media, PR is no longer just about quantity – reaching as many journalists as possible. Today, it's more about quality – building meaningful, personalized connections.

At the same time, the limitations of media databases are becoming clearer:

  • Outdated information: Journalists change roles frequently, making these databases quickly outdated
  • Impersonal outreach: Generic communications from these lists often miss the mark in today's need for personalized contact
  • Not GDPR compliant: Buying a media database means you’re getting someone’s personal information without their consent (i.e. violating the GDPR)
  • Less effective: While the “spray and pray” approach to outreach can sometimes work, successes are few and far between. With targeted pitches, PR pros often earn far more engagement and coverage

Meanwhile, understanding what journalists are interested in and tailoring your pitches to those interests has shown to yield far better results than sending blanket emails to a long list of contacts whom everybody else that bought the list is also trying to pitch.

That’s why we suggest ditching expensive media databases. Instead, use relationship-oriented platforms like Prezly to build your own contact lists and focus on direct, personalized communication with journalists.

Pricing comparison

Budget matters in PR just as much as the story you tell. Here’s how Muck Rack, Cision, and Prezly compare when it comes to pricing:

Features

Cision

Muck Rack

Prezly

Pricing available online?

No

No

Yes

Pricing

~$7,200/yr

~$10,000/yr

Starting at $50/mo

Contract length

Annual

Annual

Monthly or annual

Agency plan?

Unknown

Unknown

Yes

How much does Muck Rack cost?

  • Estimated cost: ~$10,000/yr
  • Contract: Only annual plans available.
  • The lowdown: Muck Rack isn’t the cheapest option. While their pricing isn't publicly listed, it's estimated to be around $10,000/yr. That's a significant investment, especially if you're a smaller operation or a solo practitioner.

How much does Cision cost?

  • Estimated cost: ~$7,200/yr
  • Contract: Also only offers annual plans.
  • The lowdown: Cision is a bit more affordable than Muck Rack but still requires a decent budget. Again, you won’t find exact prices listed on their website, but estimates put it in the ballpark of $7,200 annually. It’s a sizable amount, but for the range of features Cision offers, it could be a good deal for larger teams or those needing extensive outreach​​.

How much does Prezly cost?

  • Starting cost: From $50 per month plus a free trial
  • Contract: Flexible with monthly or annual options.
  • The lowdown: Prezly is the breath of fresh air in terms of transparency and affordability. Pricing information is all publicly available, starting at only $50 a month. This makes it a lot more accessible, especially for smaller teams or individuals who need a reliable tool without the hefty price tag. Plus, the flexibility of monthly plans means you're not locked in for a whole year​​.

In summary

Muck Rack and Cision are on the pricier side but offer specific features (e.g. media databases) that might justify the cost for larger teams or old-school PR campaigns. Prezly, meanwhile, is a more budget-friendly and flexible option, particularly suited for modern PR teams and agencies.

User experience & customer support

A great set of features is one thing, but how easy are these platforms to use? And when you hit a snag, how good is the support you get?

Muck Rack’s UX & customer support

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  • User experience: Muck Rack scores high on ease of use, with users finding it intuitive and simple to navigate. It’s designed with the user in mind, making searching for topics, reporters, and managing media lists a breeze​​. However, some have mentioned the tool could be more inclusive of hyperlocal media outlets​​.
  • Customer support: The feedback on Muck Rack's customer support is generally positive. Users appreciate the responsiveness and helpfulness of their support team, 

Cision’s UX & customer support

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  • User experience: Cision's feature-rich environment comes with a bit of complexity. Users often find the platform to have a steep learning curve, which might be a bit overwhelming, especially for beginners​​.
  • Customer support: While Cision’s customer support has been noted as helpful, people have mentioned frequently receiving delayed responses. Building customized reports and getting attention from customer service can sometimes be challenging​​, too.

Prezly’s UX & customer support

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  • User experience: Prezly is known for its straightforward and streamlined interface, making it user-friendly and easy to acclimate to. It’s a good pick if you're looking for a hassle-free, welcoming platform​​.
  • Customer support: Prezly stands out in the customer support department. With support available via phone, email, and chat, users have expressed high satisfaction with the responsiveness and knowledgeability of the support team​​.

In summary

Muck Rack and Prezly both offer a more user-friendly interface and responsive customer service, making them a great pick if you value simplicity and quick support. Cision, while offering a robust set of features, might require more time to master, and its customer support can be a bit hit or miss.

Comparing user reviews

To get a real-world perspective, we took a close look at what actual users are saying about Muck Rack, Cision, and Prezly. Here's a breakdown of the pros and cons for each platform based on user reviews.

Table comparing PR software ratings on Capterra.
Table comparing PR software ratings on Capterra.

Muck Rack reviews

Screenshot from Reddit.
Screenshot from Reddit.

Pros

  • Media monitoring & analytics: Users appreciate the ability to build detailed coverage reports and receive automated alerts​​.
  • User experience: It’s user-friendly, facilitating easy searches for journalists and topics​​.
  • Outreach: It’s effective for creating personalized pitches, with insights into journalists' recent work and specific interests​​.

Cons

  • Media monitoring & analytics: It can be difficult to get accurate coverage reports
  • Pricing: The pricing is steep, especially for solo practitioners or smaller firms​​.
  • Media database: The tool's reach and contact database might not be as extensive as claimed (some have mentioned high bounce-back rates​), impacting outreach efforts​​.

Cision reviews

Screenshot from Reddit.
Screenshot from Reddit.

Pros

  • Building lists: Cision is favored for its ability to target relevant media efficiently and build comprehensive media lists​​.
  • Media monitoring: Users find their media monitoring tools to be strong, with detailed tracking of media hits​​.

Cons

  • Media database: Users have reported that the information in the Cision database can sometimes be outdated​​.
  • User experience: The platform is known for its complexity, making report customization and navigation challenging​​.
  • Customer support: Customer service has been noted for being less attentive, with slow response times​​.

Prezly reviews

Review posted on Capterra.
Review posted on Capterra.

Pros

  • User experience: Users find it intuitive, user-friendly, and easy to get started managing their PR activities​​ with
  • Customer support: Excellent customer support, being highly rated for responsiveness and helpfulness​​.
  • Relationship building: The platform's modern focus on relationship-building is a unique aspect that many users find valuable​​.

Cons

  • Media database: Chooses not to sell media contact information, which might be a downside if you don’t already have your own contact lists.
  • Analytics: The analytics features are less comprehensive compared to other platforms, focusing more on actionable insights​​ like campaign engagement rates and newsroom interaction.

In summary

Muck Rack is praised for its user interface and personalized pitching capabilities but falls short in database comprehensiveness and pricing. Cision is a strong player for media monitoring and database size but could be challenging in terms of usability and customer service.

Prezly, while not as feature-rich in certain areas (i.e. media databases), excels in user experience and support, making it a great choice for those prioritizing ease of use and relationship-building in their PR campaigns.

Conclusion: Which one is best?

When it comes down to choosing between Muck Rack, Cision, and Prezly, it's all about aligning the tool with your specific PR needs and goals. 

Here's a final takeaway to help you make that choice:

Muck Rack: Who will benefit most

Best for PR professionals who prioritize detailed coverage reports, personalized pitching, and a user-friendly interface. It's a strong option if you're focused on building specific, tailored media lists and have the budget to support its pricing. However, keep in mind the limitations in database comprehensiveness and some concerns over report accuracy.

Cision: Who will benefit most

Ideal for those who need a vast media database and extensive distribution reach. If your strategy involves wide-reaching media engagement and you need an established tool for media monitoring, Cision is your go-to. However, be prepared for a steeper learning curve and potentially slower customer service responses.

Prezly: Who will benefit most

Perfect for modern PR teams and agencies who value a straightforward, easy-to-use platform with transparent pricing. Prezly excels in fostering quality media relationships and offering excellent customer support. Choose Prezly if you’re focused more on relationship-building and less on having an extensive traditional media database.

All inclusive PR software for PR agencieshttps://www.prezly.com/solution/PR-agencies

Muck Rack, Cision & Prezly alternatives

While Prezly, Muck Rack, and Cision all offer strong PR solutions, it’s always a good idea to be aware of other options in the market. 

Here’s a look at some alternative PR tools to consider:

  • Agility PR Solutions: A comprehensive suite that includes a media database, monitoring services, and tailored PR measurement and analysis. Great for those who need an all-encompassing approach to their PR activities. (public pricing not available)
  • BuzzSumo: Ideal for content strategists and marketers with deep insights into content trends and brand mentions. Specifically useful for understanding what content resonates in your industry and tracking how your brand is being discussed online. (starting at $99/month)
  • Critical Mention: Covers a wide range of channels for real-time media tracking including online media, broadcast, social media, and radio. It’s an excellent tool for staying on top of your media mentions as they happen. (public pricing not available)
  • Mynewsdesk: Tailored for managing your newsroom, distributing your content, and monitoring media, making it a well-rounded choice for comprehensive PR management (starting at $250/month)
  • Anewstip: Geared towards finding journalists and influencers, as well as media outlets, to help you target your outreach effectively and build meaningful media relationships (public pricing not available)
  • PR.co: A complete PR toolkit, PR.co offers newsroom solutions, a media database, distribution services, and coverage tracking to help you manage your PR efficiently and effectively (starting at $250/month)

List of Prezly vs comparison pages

Try Prezly's free trial

You've seen what Prezly can do, especially if you’re keen on a PR tool that’s straightforward, relationship-focused, and doesn't break the bank. Why not experience it for yourself? 

Our 14-day free trial is your no-cost, no-commitment chance to test drive Prezly’s features. During this trial, you’ll get to play around with the press release creator, dive into the media relationship tools, and check out the analytics dashboard. 

Prezly – software for modern PR teams

  • Write & publish brand stories in an online newsroom

  • Send email campaigns, pitches & newsletters

  • Manage all your contact lists in a single CRM, with easy import & export

  • Measure performance to see who's engaging with your stories

Jasper Flour

Jasper Flour

Growth Marketer

 

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