This blog post is part of “The Ultimate Guide to Public Relations” blog series.

Meltwater offers one of the leading press release distribution platforms around. You can use it to build media lists, draft pitch emails, and send your release with a personalized message to specific journalists. It can search for journalists by beat, location, outlet, etc.

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Jewel in the Crown

Meltwater’s “jewel in the crown,” according to Johnny Vance, Director of Strategic Programs at the company, is the ability to identify journalists and social influencers using proprietary natural language processing (NLP) technology. Meltwater’s “Keyword Search” feature, focuses on finding people based on the content of their recent coverage, not just a predetermined beat or outlet. The goal is to find the most relevant person to speak with based on real-time results. In contrast to traditional databases that offer more basic searches of their databases by beat, role, outlet, or geography – not by words used in the writers’ articles.

“The Keyword Search feature is the most effective way to build a media list,” Johnny says. “You can you find influencers writing about very specific terms that would never be considered to be a ‘beat’ by traditional media databases, and you can understand why they have been marked as relevant by seeing the articles they have written that match your criteria. By clicking into their profiles, you can really get a sense of what else they cover, how they like to be pitched, and what their social footprint is like. Media contact databases should be more than just a Yellow Pages, and our tool allows you to create real relationships based on relevant results, not just a list of phone numbers and email addresses.”

Better Engagement

The goal is to help you both find the most relevant audience for your story and to engage with the influencer in a more meaningful way. You can research a writer’s recent content, their social channels, and other biographical information. Meltwater also offers “pitch tips” for journalists that are constantly being updated by their Media Research Associates.  

“This approach allows Meltwater clients to avoid what we believe to be the biggest sin in the world of media outreach, the spray and pray approach,” according to Johnny.

Influence the Influencer

“Influencing the influencer in a relevant and targeted way is the best way to ensure quality coverage of your organization,” Johnny says, “and to stand out from the noise and dreaded PR spam that inundates journalists.” To this end, another feature Meltwater offers is the ability to track any or all content published by the specific people on your media list. That can help you to stay up-to-date on what your key influencers are writing about, and will provide increased familiarity with their interests, style, and topic area. This can help you shape the conversation around a certain topic to include your organization.  

The screen below shows you Meltwater’s interface for searching for influencers. Once you find the right people, click on to their profiles to find out more about them. The platform allows you to drag and drop them into a list.

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When you’re ready to craft that release, click on Outreach. It will open a preloaded template for your organization to send email from your own address.

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After you have sent the release, you can analyze who has read it and who hasn’t. You will also be able to create a search to follow the influencers you approached and to monitor and analyze any pick-up of your release.

This blog post is part of “The Ultimate Guide to Public Relations” blog series.

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