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  • Tag Archive: PRTech ecosystem

    1. How to Find the Right MarTech and PRTech Solutions

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      Now that marketers are taking PR more seriously in terms of its ability to generate top-of-funnel leads and drive valuable brand awareness, the MarTech ecosystem has come to include PRTech solutions too. Yay for us! PRTech is no longer a lone wolf.

      While this new equilibrium is exciting for PR, it’s also a bit daunting to figure out which of the nearly 4,000 B2B marketing solutions your organization should be using.

      Lou Pelosi, an advocate for marketing technologies and Entrepreneur in Residence for Storm Ventures, recently wrote an article about how to create a strategic wish list of MarTech/PRTech tools so you can streamline your stack.

      Here are a few top tactics inspired by Pelosi’s piece.

      1. Start by prioritizing the outcomes associated with various marketing roles.

      Viewing an organizational chart in tandem with the business outcomes associated with each marketing role can help you prioritize where to focus. From communications to demand generation roles, isolate the most business-critical outcomes these roles are responsible for so you can find the MarTech/PRTech solutions that support them.

      Where are you looking to affect your business, and what do you need to measure, automate, or launch to accomplish those goals?

      For example, if influencer sentiment is a priority for your pet product subscription service given your growth goals for this year, then you’ll know to hone in on B2B tools that can help you monitor influencer relations.

      2. Consider B2B solutions with notable customer traction, ratings, and reviews.

      In other words, which PRTech or MarTech solutions are used by a respectable number of customers? Does that company display customer testimonials on their website or case studies depicting how those customers have succeeded with said tool on their blog?

      You can also take into account if the company you’re eyeing up is profitable or has raised several rounds of funding successfully — indicators that they’ll have the resources needed to offer commendable customer support (as opposed to working with a service that’s beta testing and may not have kinks worked out yet).

      3. Consider the maturity of your marketing team.

      Pelosi suggests evaluating how evolved your organization is with respect to digital marketing so you can find B2B solutions best suited to the needs associated with that maturity level.

      “Stages of maturity are often defined as beginning, single channel, multi-touch, progressive, mature, world-class, etc.,” writes Pelosi. Here’s an example of a micro-landscape created for a mid-sized B2B technology company that is considered progressive.

      Pelosi notes that the complexity of these micro-landscapes will increase depending on the complexity level of your evaluation process. “Using just the filters mentioned here would generate dozens of landscapes,” write Pelosi. “The complexity further increases as more marketing functions and outcomes are added.”

      In short, the MarTech solutions you end up choosing should be considered integral and used across the organization given that they affect sales, customer support, and, yes, PR.

      Don’t forget that MarTech includes PRTech, and PRTech = gold for today’s PR pros. You are a powerful arm of the marketing function and should have a say in the stack used by your organization.

    2. 2016 PRTech Awards Recap

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      Last week in New York, we held the third annual PRTech Awards honoring individuals who work to bring together PR, marketing, technology, and media. These individuals were selected from 100+ nominations.

      For the last half decade, PR software providers have built technologies around third party data from web crawlers, social media sites, TV and radio broadcasts, and print media. Some PRTech companies have become overburdened with data and some have begun to consolidate. Today, a new wave of PRTech companies is coming forth.

      Data is empowering the PR industry to refine content, extend reach, and prove value. Reporting on that data provides key audience insights for campaign planning and content production. Now is the time to harness the power of technological innovation to propel PR even further.

      Enter Tae Hea Nahm, co-founding managing director of Storm Ventures. In SaaS/marketplaces, he has invested in marketing and revenue generation (Cloudwords, EchoSign/Adobe, Engagio, Marketo/IPO, and Scripted). At this year’s PRTech Awards, Tae Hea was interviewed by Gary Belsky, columnist at Money Magazine, to discuss why he invested in AirPR.

      Gary Belsky interviews Tae Hea Nahm at the 2016 PRTech Awards

      Tae Hea is a seasoned investor. He has incubated and hired the founders of AireSpace/Cisco and MobileIron. He recruited and funded Storm EIRs, including Jason Lemkin, founder of EchoSign, and Ilbok Lee, founder of Silego.

      In a marketplace saturated with “me toos”, PRTech stands out as leading in measurement and analytics, with a strong pace towards AI. “Automation is key,” said Tae Hea. “We live in a time with not only tremendous amounts of data that overwhelms us, but we’re also responsible for making business decisions around that data.” The mission is to organize that data and allow proprietary technology to provide automation and insights to marketing and PR professionals.

      With technologies that allow for more validation and measurement for PR and branding, marketers can measure the outcomes of their various outputs and connect them to business goals and revenue.

      It’s an exciting time in the PRTech space and we’re excited to partner with experienced investors like Storm Ventures.

      The PRTech ecosystem is quickly expanding with a plethora of tools to help communications professionals do their jobs better. Hopefully you’re taking advantage of these tools.

      What’s in your PRTech stack?

    3. Why Measuring Input Is as Important as Measuring Outcomes

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      Alex Mann ClickTime CEO

      Measuring the success of a PR campaign is important. So is measuring how much time your team spent creating and implementing that campaign. This combination provides an understanding of input and output: time and resources invested, compared to what was gained from the campaign itself.

      In this PRTech Pro Spotlight, I interview ClickTime CEO Alex Mann to address a challenge that almost every PR agency faces: how to manage projects as efficiently as possible and ensure that employees are spending their time effectively.

      If you haven’t heard of ‘em, ClickTime is a time and expense management application designed for professional service firms such a PR and creative agencies. It’s one of the latest additions to our PRTech ecosystem, a list of platforms every PR professional should be aware of, if not actively using for more data-driven public relations.

      Leta Soza: There’s a lot of innovation taking place across the PR industry. Why did you decide to focus on the challenges of the PR agency instead of the individual PR professional?

      Alex Mann: When people think of public relations, it’s often in terms of the clients: creating content, fighting for media coverage, and measuring outcomes. There are some great tools available to track hits, monitor social media, manage relationships, etc., but there are very few tools available to promote the health of the agency itself.

      We realized that it’s challenging for agency owners and managers to effectively manage costs, staff projects, and maximize revenue. Whether an agency is using a retainer-based model, hourly billing, or value-based pricing, there are many variables to contend with.

      On top of that, employee availability fluctuates rapidly (with vacation time and sick leave), customer needs change quickly, and benchmarking project costs and time can be a struggle. That’s why we wanted to create a platform that makes it easier for agencies to operate efficiently.

      LS: For PR agencies to ensure longevity and profitability, which problems/challenges are most important to solve?

      AM: Reducing over-servicing, increasing employee efficiency, and retaining talent are essential for any successful agency. I think for long-term success, you need to address them all. Our area of expertise is in over-servicing.

      If your employees are over-servicing, not only are they performing free work for your clients, but they also have less available hours to work on other projects. This has a significant impact on your team’s capacity to take on new work or to properly plan employee time in the future. It also leads to excessive staffing levels, which starves an agency of resources for growth.

      LS: What productivity and time management benchmarks or KPIs are most important for PR agencies to track?

      AM: High-performing agencies focus on employee utilization, employee capacity, and revenue per employee. They need to be measured accurately, goals should be set, and progress against those goals should be measured. These are such important metrics that agencies should consider linking them to performance reviews and compensation decisions.

      LS: How do you stay abreast of the changes within the agency world and the greater PR industry in general?

      AM: We’re very fortunate that we get to spend time with so many great agencies around the world. Our customers do a great job of informing us of their needs and sharing industry trends. We’re also partners with PR Council and PRSA, both of which offer excellent educational opportunities for technology companies like ClickTime.

      LS: Give me an example of how you’ve helped an agency succeed.

      AM: One of our newer customers, MMI Public Relations, has been able to more effectively allocate employee resources and manage client budgets through our platform. We’ve helped many agencies reduce administrative costs and improve operations across the board.

      LS: Most recent thing you’ve read or watched that moved you?

      AM: I recently completed “Give and Take: Why Helping Others Drives Our Success” by Adam Grant. It’s one of those great business books that has immediate application in other parts of your life. Grant helps you better understand the people surrounding you, in both professional and private realms, and focus on your interactions with them. The book affirms something many people know intuitively, but don’t always practice day-to-day — that generosity in relationships can foster success in life.

    4. How PRTech Can Pump Up Your 2016 PR Planning

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      If you’re anything like us, you’re likely steeped in planning madness as the final weeks of 2015 come to a red and green infested close. In the midst of crafting strategies, brainstorming campaigns, and ideating stories, be sure to check out our recently refreshed PRTech Ecosystem.

      My, how far we’ve come!

      In just one year, we’ve seen explosive growth in some categories, the emergence of completely new sections, and an abundance of maturation and innovation rolled out by all. It’s an exciting time for the PRTech space and this is only the beginning of the journey.

      Whether you’re planning, executing, or measuring, this deep list of tools can help with automation, optimization, productivity, granularity and more. Just remember that any tech should allow you to focus on what matters most: critical thinking, relationship building and storytelling.

      Got another PRTech company you think should be included in our ecosystem? Shoot us a note or tweet at us!

      We update this ecosystem once a quarter and welcome any and all peeps you think should be on our radar.


      Some Things To Note

      • The PRTech ecosystem provides tools designed to assist PR every step of the way. Many of the companies play in a few different spaces but in this refresh, we focused on listing companies as they relate to their most viable product a.k.a. what they do better than anyone else. Be sure to get know everything everyone offers!
      • A special shoutout to all the PRTech companies who reached out via email, Twitter, carrier pigeon, etc. to let us know of the awesome work you’re doing. Making your voices known is the first step in showing off how much value we collectively bring to the table.
      • Another huge high five to our #PRpals at Prezly for their incredibly detailed overview of many of these tools on prstack.co. Not only is Prezly helping PR pros craft and push out beautiful, multimedia rich stories, they fundamentally challenge all of PR to think outside the press release box. Good stuff.
    5. 7 PRTech Solutions Every PR Pro Needs

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      Upgrade your PRWe’ve got a massive crush on everything PRTech, and why not? Nothing has changed our industry more than technological innovation. This evolution has ushered in an era where PR pros must commit to researching new platforms and learning new skills that allow us to communicate better and measure PR smarter.

      It can be a bit daunting to know where to start, so we’re taking the guesswork out of the equation and distilling down the ecosystem to bring you 7 PRTech solutions guaranteed to make your life easier and your work better.

      Each of these solutions maps to an important PR objective and implementing these solutions will move us all closer to a programmatic approach to PR.

      Let’s get after it, shall we?

      PR Objective: Increase Visual Storytelling

      PRTech Solution: Canva

      Canva does an incredible job empowering everyone to be creative. Touted as the world’s easiest design program, Canva democratizes one of the more elusive (and often expensive) aspects of PR.

      How to gauge success: Everyone agrees that visual content is a major media trend that will continue to have prominence. Aim to tell compelling narratives through infographics, ensure visual branding is consistent across all marketing collateral, and integrate more imagery into everything you push out.


    6. How PRTech is reseeding the PR Landscape

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      This week we let go of our blog reins. Mostly because we don’t like to talk about ourselves, but also because we recently met an impressive young women named Alexis Anthony whose PR prowess deserves some love.

      Rebekah met Alexis back in October at the Cision/Vocus #FutureofPR event in Washington D.C. Needless to say, she left a lasting impression. Alexis is currently studying Public Relations and Business Analytics (our favorite combo!) at the University of Maryland.

      We were taken by her philosophy on PR’s evolution, so we picked her brain about the recent launch of our newest site: PRTech.co.

      Alexis spent the day at AirPR last week and from everything we saw and heard, we are certain this lady personifies the PR professional of the future.

      We hope you enjoy her take on PRTech’s role in creating a robust, thriving industry.

      How PRTech is reseeding the PR Landscape

      By Alexis Anthony

      As odd as it sounds, PR pros could learn a thing or two from lawn care specialists. Yeah, weird idea I know, but bear with me. Imagine a golf course. Aside from the everyday mowing and trimming, ground gurus keep the fairways and greens in pristine condition through a process called reseeding.

      They don’t actually re-plant seeds. They apply more seed where the grass is thin or bare to make it more robust and add structure to the landscape.

      So how does this tie in to PR?

      PRTech.co logo (b)We’ve talked again and again about the importance of PR measurement, data literacy, and understanding technology. It’s the industry revolution we call PRTech.

      But many seasoned practitioners resist these emerging PR tenants because things like automation and universal analytics feel unnatural. After all, the industry has gotten along for 200 years without them, right?

      What those practitioners may not see are the thin or bare patches their PR landscapes. Instead of thinking about PRTech as replanting the industry, we should see it as reseeding – filling barren cavities with data and technology.

      Still with me? Here are three reasons we need to think of PRTech as a movement to reseed the industry and three ways we can jumpstart the process.