3 Free PR Resources You Should Be Using

The Remains of the Cupcakes, by Veronica Miramontes

We recently wrote about about how social media and things like Twitter, LinkedIn and other social mediums have and are changing the relationship between PR professionals and journalists and media outlets. If you missed that post, you can read it here (and of course we hope you will) (because it’s good) and also because it contains information and links about chats and PR groups on Twitter that you might find helpful.

Social media, combined with the business community’s growing comfort level with the Internet (God, I love the Internet) (don’t judge me) have led to a lot of very smart people realizing that they can quickly and easily create their own databases, reference guides and sometimes even tools, often for free is, well, pretty awesome. Power to the people.

Peter Shankman and his Help A Reporter Out is a great example of a free online source that is used daily by reporters and writers to find information, experts and sources on things they want to write about and/or when they need quotes. There’s much more to HARO than we’ve mentioned here, and if you’ve not yet nosed around there, we encourage you to do so. In our opinion, HARO is nothing short of brilliant. Thank you Peter.

Another one of our favorite tools created in By the People, For the People mode (there’s that Internet again) is PressWiki. PressWiki is a media database that includes an ever-growing list of entries about reporters and media outlets and their contact information. Bonus!

It’s easy to create an account or edit contact info and the Wiki often includes handy dandy information like Twitter handles, links to past articles and tons of other great info. The database is editable by anyone and contains a wealth of information about news directors, editors, publishers and reporters and is a not only a tremendous resource for PR pros, but for small business owners, too.

We also use paid media distribution services (we’re trying out PRNewswire right now) and have used Cision in the past. One thing that many of our prospective clients have in common is that we find they’re often overlooking the power of PR in their marketing and communications efforts and, when we get involved, we do all we can to try and remedy that if the situation warrants. PR is an important element of just about any integrated marketing effort. Period.

We also love Jason Kintzler and Pitch Engine, which he developed sitting in the mountains of Wyoming. Pitch Engine offers a free option that you can use to test drive the service and, if you do, we’re pretty sure you’ll like it as much as we do. Pitch Engine allows you to create and share press content that includes images, videos and attachments and helps you craft releases that are not only SEO optimized, but which look killer, too. We use Pitch Engine’s paid service and find it well worth the cost, so give it a test drive, but if you like it, consider the benefits of the paid service. Another bonus!

What are other great tools or products have you discovered and/or are experimenting with? We’d love to know some of your secret sauce. And there might be some cupcakes in it for you if you share. Red Velvet. Mmmmmmm.

Photo Credit: The Very Talented Veronica Miramontes

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  • Ron Milliman

    I am Chair of the PR Committee for the American Council of the Blind (ACB), a large non-profit organization, but we have a very limited budget. This article is very helpful, but are there other free or low-cost resources that we could be using to get our media releases out and published/aired?

  • Anonymous

    Hi Ron,

    I’m actually working on a post for next week about some additional resources, so if you’ll hit the “subscribe” button, it’ll wing its way to you very soon!

    Thanks for coming by.

    Shelly

  • http://twitter.com/JGoldsborough JGoldsborough

    Uh, cupcakes. You had me at red velvet. Great advice here, Shelly. Seems like some people are also having success with iReport. And I can’t say enough about Twitter community chats. But I’d also throw out there F2F niche networking groups. For instance, KC/IABC (disclosure — I’m on the board) has a technology special interest group that meets the second Friday of each month. Great learning, but also an invaluable networking opportunity.

    Good stuff. Cheers!

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  • Anonymous

    Thanks JG :) ) I’m a big fan of KC/IABC, too!!

  • GGillen

    24-7pressrelease.com lets you submit one free release per day. The caveat is that once approved, the free releases usually are posted a few days later. The good news is that I’ve seen many releases reposted on other topic-specific or general e-news sites, thus increasing SEO.

  • Anonymous

    We use that resource too … love it!!

  • Anonymous

    I’ve not tried it, Jonathan … will definitely check your service out. Thanks for the heads up.

  • Deborah

    LOVE HARO–gives the small biz owner a chance to get publicity.  A great idea–and fun to read thru too!

  • Anonymous

    Absolutely! We love it, too!

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