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Comparison of the Best Digital PR Tools and Software for 2024

Whether you’re a growing startup or an already established business, you’ve probably come across the benefits of digital PR and how it has the potential to grow brand awareness, online presence, and visibility.

There are many strategies that PR practitioners or savvy business owners use to enhance their brand's presence online:

  • Relationship building with journalists and webmasters
  • Arranging interviews
  • Preparing and sending online press releases 
  • Utilizing social media influencers 
  • Being featured on podcasts
  • Outreaching to industry publications to write content for them

Whether investing in digital public relations tools has recently crossed your mind or it’s already a core pillar of your brand’s marketing strategy, this article will look into the best digital PR tools and software your business could invest in for 2022.

The benefits of digital PR tools and software

Before we review different digital public relations tools and software available, it’s important to understand the benefits of introducing such technology into your digital PR strategy and overall marketing activity. Below are just a few benefits of harnessing the power of these powerful tools.


One of the biggest pain points many businesses experience when implementing digital PR into their global marketing strategy is the time it takes. Hive19 supports this idea when discussing the power of digital PR and link building saying: “Few businesses produce content that consistently attracts the type of backlinks that will drive improved rankings naturally. Aim to create insightful, thought-provoking, SEO-led content that the industry’s most relevant, authoritative websites want to publish and share.” 

From concept ideation and implementation to execution and monitoring results - most brands need a dedicated team of experienced marketers in order to see any impactful ROI. As the old saying goes, “Time is Money”, and this is why a lot of businesses opt to outsource to a digital marketing agency that specializes in this type of marketing. 

However, if you have the capacity, resources, and skillset in-house but are looking for ways to improve efficiency, then investing in a toolkit of digital PR tools and software could be the answer to avoid this additional investment of outsourcing. 


Most software vendors (as part of their package) provide an introduction to the features, capabilities, and 1-1 training to help get you up and running with their tool. With scalability in mind, this means that when a new member joins your team or company, the software vendors will often provide training and an overview for you. 

This helps onboarding new talent to your team, getting them up to speed without taking resources from upper management and other departments. 

Another great benefit of investing in digital PR tools is that the service you go with will often grow with you. The add-ons and larger package deals mean you won’t outgrow them when you scale and inevitably demand more from their service.


The best digital PR tools and software pride themselves on delivering the most accurate and up-to-date information on the market. With constant improvements to how they measure rankings, keywords, content, and traffic - you can be sure they’re under intense pressure from the industry to deliver the largest and most reliable data set available to users.


Digital collaboration through SaaS products and other online digital PR tools has never been more important to distributed teams and brands worldwide. With the shift towards a more remote-first workforce over the past few years, we see a greater reliance on digital collaboration and technologies that facilitate it. 

With collaborative workflow, the tools we’ll cover in this list will help with productivity, accurate data sourcing, and informed strategy planning for the entire team whilst working remotely.

It’s important to note that not all of the tools from our list will suit your needs. Still, any combination will give you a reliable and accurate digital PR toolkit that will help scale your business, grow your presence online, and introduce your brand to new audiences.

Now, let’s look at the options for your new digital PR toolkit. We’ve collected a plethora of 17 tools that will help you at every stage of your digital PR journey with the costs, the service that each one provides, and the benefits of using them. From there you can cherry-pick which Digital PR tools and software will suit your business, team, and budget for this type of online marketing. 

The Best PR Research Tools for 2022

So, what are PR research tools? From the backend, they often use public data available to everyone. Through APIs and other data sources, they collect the data and present the insights in an easily digestible and often visual way that can be understood by marketing professionals and others in the industry. 

Four of the best PR research tools included below have a free version available to try out and see the opportunity for yourself and how it can inform and guide your digital PR strategy in 2022.   


📣 What is AnswerThePublic?

AnswerThePublic markets itself as a consumer insight tool. Users can tap into data that has been scraped from Google (and other search engines) to understand what people are asking or searching for about your focus keyword. 

Use these powerful insights to help form the foundations of your digital pr campaign. The more relevant your content is to answering a question or solving a problem for your target audience, the better it will perform.

What is the investment? 

  • FREE - A trial run allows you to use the platform, but you're limited based on traffic volumes
  • $99/mo - 3 users with a training package worth $248
  • $79/mo ($948 upfront and billed yearly) - 5 users plus training package worth $447

How can I use AnswerThePublic? 

The first question to ask yourself when considering AnswerThePublic as a digital PR tool is; do you have the capacity and skill set to execute the insights you gain from using this tool? This tool will help your content team identify themes or topics to write about that people are also searching for online to help get your brand in front of high intent audiences.  


📧 What is Clearbit? 

Clearbit’s email finder offers 100 search credits every month that help to identify the correct email address for any person from any website. Clearbit Connect is a free Google Chrome tool that lets you enter a domain and grab anyone’s email address to ensure your email lands in the correct inbox. 

One of the best features of this free tool is that they include the position of the person you’re contacting to ensure your email lands in the right inbox.

What is the investment? 

  • FREE - 100 email searches every month
  • The Business Plan - a bespoke pricing model based on volume, the packages, and add-ons you choose.

How can I use Clearbit? 

Clearbit’s email finder will ensure your outreach email lands in right person’s inbox to increase the likelihood of a response and improve your success rate when cold outreaching.

Whether you’re contacting the Editor or journalist at a leading industry magazine to pitch a story to or the CEO at a company that you’re looking to introduce your brand to for a potential collaboration - Clearbit will ensure a higher success rate for your cold outreach. 

Google Trends

🔎 What is Google Trends?

Google Trends is a global marketing data source that gives you a real-time performance of any keyword used in the search engine. 

Compare up to 5 keywords and apply different filters such as the geographical location, custom time range, industry category, and type of web search (e.g., YouTube, Image, News, or Shopping) to further understand the online activity around a set of keywords over a period of time.

What is the investment? 

  • FREE - unlimited searches 

How can I use Google Trends? 

Business owners and digital PR practitioners can use Google Trends to identify and understand public perspectives on a specific topic, event, or product to help inform their digital PR strategy.  

Exploding Topics 

🔎 What is Exploding Topics? 

Exploding Topics (founded by Brian Dean from Backlinko) helps to identify rapidly growing trends before the wider market picks them. The platform focuses on investors and entrepreneurs looking to stay ahead of the curve. 

Exploding Topics helps you tap into where the focus is heading from a consumer point of view across a variety of industries and markets. Exploding Topics’ valuable insights are based on millions of data points from search, shopping, and online communities.

What is the investment? 

  • FREE - insights into the biggest trends of the last 15 years 
  • Entrepreneur Plan: $97/mo - Trends database, emerging new companies, 1 Meta trend each week
  • Investor Plan: $247/mo - Instant trend alerts, add team members, and API access

How can I use Exploding Topics? 

Although this tool is for entrepreneurs and investors, it can provide marketers and business owners a real insight into where the market’s focus is heading before anyone else. Based on trend reports and online activity months before it hits the mainstream, you can stay ahead of the curve (and your competitors) by producing content and digital PR assets that align with this activity. 

This tool has the insight needed to identify trending topics to get behind when newsjacking as well as the ideation/concept stage of your digital PR strategy.

The Best PR Software for 2022

Finding the best PR software to invest in can be a challenge. They all seem to have all the bells and whistles, are competitive in price, and some of the best leaders in the industry all vouch for different suppliers - so, where do you start?

Here we’ve covered some of the more household digital PR software that should be a staple in any PR team’s toolkit as well as a handful of lightly untapped software that are worth checking out. 


📊 What is BuzzSumo?

BuzzSumo is an index of content and social engagement data, and it also now includes a Media Database to help PRs research and outreach to journalists.

What is the investment?

  • Content Creation $159/month – 1 User, Unlimited Searches, 2 Alerts, 2 years of data.
  • PR & Comms $99/month - Unlimited monthly searches, Media Database access, 5 users, and 5 mention alerts, 3 years of data.
  • Suite $399/month - Unlimited monthly searches, 10 users, and 10 mention alerts, 5 years of data.
  • Enterprise $999/month - Unlimited monthly searches, 30 users, and 50 mention alerts, 5 years of data.

How can I use BuzzSumo?

For digital PR teams, BuzzSumo’s Content Discovery is one of areas that I’d suggest starting with. Content Discovery allows you to browse topics, trends, and forums based on the relevant keywords you input.

BuzzSumo’s Media Database is also powerful. Use it to:

  • Tap into 700K journalists and access 2M contact details
  • Research relevant journalists through advanced search and filtering
  • Create targeted media lists of journalists to pitch
  • Quickly generate AI pitch emails and personalize with journalist content to hand
  • Identify top performers based on engagement metrics to prioritize outreach
  • Accurately measure campaign impact by tracking pitch engagement
  • Keep journalist data updated with 350,000 monthly profile updates

Across the rest of the tool, you can also identify new opportunities for coverage, monitor mentions that will help you turn citations into links, find real customer questions across hundreds of thousands forums, and analyze your competitors’ strategies. 


📈 What is Ahrefs?

Ahrefs is a powerhouse software for any marketing professional and business owner. Their core five tools cover: domain analysis, keyword research, competitor analysis, site audits, rank tracking, and competitor analysis. Ahrefs will give you the metrics and insight to inform and monitor your digital PR strategy.

What is the investment?

  • Lite $99 - 1 power user, research your competitors' backlinks and keyword rankings
  • Standard $199 - 6 months of historical data for backlinks and rankings, Domain Comparison, and Content Explorer
  • Advanced $399 - 2 years of historical data, Google Data Studio integration and optimize your on-page content and compare it against competitors
  • Enterprise $999 - Ahrefs API access, track user activity in your workspace, and unlimited historical data

How can I use Ahrefs?

Similar to Buzzsumo, one of our favorite tools from Ahrefs is their Content Explorer. It’s one of their five core tools, and it helps you discover and analyze the best-performing articles and media within your niche. 

AhrefsBot (a Web Crawler) powers its database of over 12 trillion links for Ahrefs users. According to Imperva, AhrefsBot is the second most active crawler after Googlebot. If you’re serious about digital PR and gaining a deeper understanding of how links and content impact the rankings of your digital public relations activity, then Ahrefs is a must-have in any digital PR toolkit.

Gorkana (by Cision)

👀 What is Gorkana?

Gorkana offers integrated media planning, monitoring, and analysis for your digital PR activity. 

With Gorkana, you’ll get access to: 

  • Media Database. Identify and pitch to key influencers in your industry already covering stories related to your business, brand, and offering.
  • Monitoring. Identify keywords relevant to your company in global media outlets.
  • Social Media. Track, monitorб and interact with mentions of your brand and related industry keywords.
  • Analysis. Measure the results of your digital public relations activity with their reporting.
  • Surveys. Create short surveys and receive results within minutes to inform your PR activity.

What is the investment?

  • £££ - Bespoke pricing 

How can I use Gorkana?

From a business perspective, Gorkana offers access to a PR community where you can obtain relevant editorial content, case studies, samples, and sources to help promote and connect your brand with a wider audience. 

For digital PR practitioners, you can build targeted media lists with Gorkana. The platform also lets you search specific keywords using the media database to find out what journalists are talking about (in real-time) on Twitter. Collaboration is well supported with Gorkana as multiple team members can build media lists simultaneously to send press releases out to specifically targeted journalists. 


📕 What is CoverageBook?

CoverageBook is a time saver for any digital public relations professional. Gone are the days when you had to copy and paste screenshots of your media coverage into a PowerPoint or compress and merge it into a PDF, hunting around using endless tools to find metrics and insights to include in your report. Well, CoverageBook does it all! 

What is the investment?

  • Bronze - $99/mo - Teams of 5 who add less than 100 clips/mo
  • Bronze Plus - $149/mo - Teams of 5 who add less than 300 clips/mo
  • Silver - $199/mo - Teams who have unlimited users who add less than 1,000 clips/mo
  • Gold - $499/mo - Silver+ 1-hour training for your team and teams that add up to 10,000 clips/mo

How can I use CoverageBook?

Collect a list of URLs of all the coverage you’ve achieved for your brand in the month and paste it into CoverageBook. This digital public relations software will take your URLs and create a book with engagement metrics and visuals to present to your manager, client, or company stakeholders. 

This is a perfect option to free up time for junior team members. Once this is taken care of, you can avoid spending hours (sometimes days) on data collection. CoverageBook does the data crunching and now you’re ready to plan and execute next month's public relations concept.


📰 What is Prowly?

Prowly is a hub where you keep all of your company news in a centralized place. Prowly offers email analytics, press release analytics, and media asset management. One of their core features is the media database, where you’ll have access to journalists' contact details and be able to contact them directly with your press releases. 

What is the investment?

  • Essential - $189/mo - 1,000 media contacts, ideal for small businesses and freelancers 
  • Professional - $259/mo - 1,000 new media contacts, perfect for PR agencies & in-house teams
  • Enterprise - Bespoke pricing - for large PR firms and enterprise businesses

How can I use Prowly?

Prowly’s Online Newsroom is a core part of their workflow, ultimately a virtual press office for your brand. The Newsroom can also act as a definitive source for any journalist covering a story about you or your company to ensure that false narratives aren’t being communicated online. 

Prowly also offers bespoke PR consultations (across all plans) to support your team with their digital public relations activity. 

Brand Mentions

👂 What is Brand Mentions?

BrandMentions notifies you every time your brand, product, or related keyword is mentioned online. Find in real-time who is talking about your brand, industry, or key figures in your business in the news and on social media.

What is the investment?

  • Growing Business - $99/mo - 15 keywords tracked, and 6 months of historical data
  • Company - $299/mo - 50 keywords tracked, and 1 year of historical data
  • Enterprise/Agency - $499/mo - 150 keywords tracked (boolean query tracking), 10 years of historical data, and image monitoring

How can I use Brand Mentions?

Brand Mentions provides access to real-time alerts of any mention of your brand also instant online brand reputation management. A key component in any digital PR strategy is joining conversations (whether it’s positive or negative sentiment) online that are about your company or the services you provide.

If you opt for one of the higher value packages, you could try monitoring your lead competitor to help identify where they are getting mentioned online and whether you could incorporate those insights into your digital PR strategy. 

The Best PR Outreach Tools for 2022

A PR Outreach tool is a service that helps facilitate the relationship between a source (that’s you!) and a journalist, media outlet, or company. The aim is to increase brand awareness through media coverage, taking advantage of an already-established audience from a third-party presence online. 

Let’s take a look at four of the best PR outreach tools in more detail and a bonus tool that will help uplift your pitches to the next level!


🎙️ What is HARO? 

HARO (Help A Reporter Out) provides your brand with a list of opportunities to gain coverage from some of the most well-known publishers in the world. This PR outreach tool facilitates direct access to journalists who are already covering stories online around similar topics to do with your business.

HARO sends an email full of opportunities from journalists (often between 40-100 different opportunities) asking for insights on specific topics and stories. These stories require specialist insight from a particular demographic to provide authority on the subject matter being written about. The industries that HARO opportunities cover include: 

  • Biotech and Healthcare
  • Business and Finance
  • Education
  • High Tech
  • Lifestyle and Fitness. 

What is the investment? 

  • FREE - Media Opportunities: Delivered to your inbox, three times a day
  • Standard $19/mo - Keyword to save time and automatically filter opportunities
  • Advanced $49/mo - Three keywords and early access to opportunities. 

How can I use HARO? 

Depending on the preferences you set when registering with HARO, they will send you an email up to three times a day: 

  • Morning opportunities - 5:35 am
  • Afternoon opportunities - 12:35 pm
  • Evening opportunities - 5:35 pm

To give you an insight into what a standard HARO email looks like when it lands in your inbox, see below: 

Monitoring HAROs can become a full-time job for someone in your team or business. Some digital PR agencies build an entire model around answering HAROs on behalf of clients to gain coverage for them. 

To ensure you don’t miss opportunities relevant to your business, use ‘rules’ and filters to help manage your inbox and get it to work as an automated PA for you. The number of emails that land in your inbox can become quite overwhelming, especially if you’ve signed up for three emails every day.

However, the rule is to be selective and go for quality input over sheer volume when pitching to journalists. Journalists receive a lot of replies from experts like yourself to be featured in their story, podcast, or interview so they can easily tell if your insight is unique and of value to their audience. 

Muck Rack

👤 What is Muck Rack?

Muck Rack is a database where you can search for journalists, gain insights into how journalists prefer to be pitched to, monitor news, and provide reports on all your activity.

What is the investment? 

  • £££ - Bespoke pricing

How can I use Muck Rack?

Muck Rack is one of the more expensive tools, and if you’re starting out, there are other tools on the list worth exploring before diving headfirst into such an investment. Still, if your digital PR model is starting to outgrow its capabilities and require additional features, then get in touch with MuckRack to discuss prices and a package that best suits your business and budget.


🎙️ What is Terkel? 

Terkel creates community-driven content by using industry professionals to comment and provide expert insights for journalists. 

The dashboard for Terkel looks like this: 

As well as the main dashboard available when a user logs in, Terkel sends an email notifying you that they have new publishing opportunities. The email is clearly separated by topic and theme (business, marketing, finance, HR, etc.), which you can see in the following example:

What is the investment? 

  • The Lite Plan - Free and allows you 5 credits every month. 
  • Premium Plan - $99/mo gives you unlimited pitches & early access to questions.

How can I use Terkel? 

The benefit of using a PR Outreach Tool like Terkel is that it’s slightly under the radar. It’s not as well-known as MuckRack or HARO, so you’re likely to be competing with fewer brands that are going after the same journalists' stories. 

This doesn’t mean that the opportunities Terkel provides aren’t as glamorous or sought after. Terkel often has opportunities to provide insights to stories published on GoDaddy, Shopify, Zapier, as well as their own Terkel blog.  


🎙️ What is Qwoted?

Qwoted is another digital PR outreach tool that many might not come across but is another fantastic tool for media outlets and journalists to connect with business owners and PRs looking for powerful coverage online. 

What is the investment? 

  • FREE - 3 pitches per month, 1-hour delay to pitch new requests
  • Pro - $149.99/mo, unlimited media opportunities for 1 person
  • Teams - $750/mo, unlimited pitching for all users, reports, and white labeling.

How can I use Qwoted? 

Get started with Qwoted by signing up for their email notifications and receiving a list of new requests (around 2 pm every day). Expect to see a similar email to the following:

Review the list of opportunities and cherry-pick those based on the media outlet and the request. Ask yourself the following questions: 

  1. Does my company/brand align with this media outlet? Are we in the same niche? Do we share a similar audience? 
  2. Is the question or topic an area in which I have in-depth knowledge, personal experience, or unique opinion?    

If the answer to these two questions is yes, it’s a great opportunity for you to provide insight, value, and depth to their article.

Bonus Tool: Unsplash

📷 What is Unsplash? 

Unsplash is a must for any business owner and marketing practitioner looking to incorporate rich media into their digital PR activity. Unsplash has over 2 million high-resolution images gifted by a community of photographers and designers…and, did I mention that they are totally free to use? 

The images are covered under the Unsplash license — which means that you’re welcome to use them however you want in your PR activity without needing permission from the owner.

What is the investment? 

  • FREE - unlimited use

How can I use Unsplash for my business? 

If you’re sending press releases to journalists to cover a story on your business, ideally, you would have original bespoke images to run alongside your idea. However, this is often not the case, so sending high-res imagery as attachments provide rich media assets to bring your story to life and offer a visual aspect to the story. Text-based press releases are outdated, and in a growingly competitive space, your stories need to stand out and catch journalists’ eyes as soon as they open your email.

The Best PR Automated Monitoring Tools for 2022

Monitoring tools use machine learning tactics to crawl social media platforms, online magazines, blogs, and forums. These digital public relations tools help you automatically scan and identify any mention of your brand along with any key terms related to your business (e.g. products, services, events, etc.) 

Twitter’s #journorequest

#️⃣ What is #JournoRequest?

Rather than pitching cold emails to busy journalists, #journorequest on Twitter provides PR practitioners and business owners a full list of current opportunities for contributions. Rather than cold pitching, these are a list of opportunities coming through in real-time, offering coverage on some of the top media outlets in the world. 

The benefits of using #journorequest are that it’s free and available to anyone who has experience or relevant insight to share on the topic that is being covered. You don’t need to have a pre-existing relationship with these media outlets, so it’s open to anyone who can answer the question and can provide value to their story.    

What is the investment? 

  • FREE - unlimited use

How can I use #JournoRequest for my business? 

Zoë Hannah, a journalist who has contributed to online publications such as WIRED, Entrepreneur, and Insider.com, shares her tips for using #JournoRequest to find sources. We recommend reverse engineering her advice to improve your chances of getting your pitch accepted by journalists and landing powerful coverage for your brand.

You can utilize automation tools such as IFTTT (IF This Then That) by creating an automatic feed in Google Sheets that will populate with every new #journorequest as they are shared on Twitter. This means you'll save time scrolling through each one looking for something relevant to your business or area of expertise.

Google Alerts

🚨 What is Google Alerts? 

Google Alerts helps you automatically monitor blogs, news outlets, videos, books, and discussion forums for any mentions of your brand, competitors, services, and events.

What is the investment? 

  • FREE - 1,000 alerts per Gmail account

How can I use Google Alerts?

To avoid adding further noise to your inbox, Google Alerts can send anything directly to your existing RSS feed that is registered with your existing website. After you have created the terms you want to monitor, click Deliver to: ‘RSS feed’. This avoids any notifications landing in your inbox and contains any mentions all in one place, ready for you to review when you have allocated time for this task. 

Things to Consider When Investing in Digital PR Tools and Software in 2022

As we’ve covered in this article, there are many digital PR tools and digital public relations software that you can choose from, and each one is powerful in its own right (when utilized the correct way). 

Mind that you won’t need all of them and try to avoid signing up to every tool listed all at once. Take your time. It’s likely there are a few in this list that has stuck in your mind, or you’ve opened a tab ready to find out more - brilliant! Be selective when making your decision (especially with the paid software). Take full advantage of the free trials available to you to get a flavor of what each platform has to offer and whether they align with your digital PR needs and approach to digital PR.

Final Thoughts

So, there we have it! A comparison of the best digital PR tools and software currently available to marketing practitioners and business owners looking to scale their business, grow their presence online, and improve efficiencies for teams in a remote-first world.

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