Technology is here is to make our lives better. Here are the five tech essentials that every PR professional should have:
1. A file sharing program
Working in this field, I'm always sending large files back and forth. Many times I find that the files are just too large to send and receive with my email.
Dropbox and Google Drive allow you to share all files at any size through the cloud. As a public relations professional, you often deal with large files such as audio, videos, photos, and graphics. Both tools enable you to transfer or access those types of files with no size limit.
2. A media monitoring and list building tool
Whether you work for a PR firm or do public relations for a company, you have a client's reputation to monitor. Cision, Vocus, and Meltwater are programs that track your client and relevant topics in the news. Both programs also help you build media lists. Google Alerts is free tool from Google that sends you email notifications when your client or a topic of interest is mentioned in the news.
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3. A social media management tool
Whenever I conduct social media training sessions, I emphasize the relationship between social media and traditional news media. Twitter is where journalists hang out. It's where they post articles and look for information and tips. Tweetdeck, BackTweets, and Brandwatch enable you to track individuals, keywords, and hashtags. These tools have both paid and free options. Muck Rack is a paid tool that specifically tracks journalists and topics. Not only do all these tools help you keep up with news events and developments, but they really help you build relationships with journalists.
4. A tablet
I joke that PR is 24/7 job. PR professionals have to be able to work from any place at anytime. In order to do that it's almost as if you need a miniature office to carry around with...