Although they have been in the news this week for the wrong reasons, newswires and press release distribution services have long been among PR’s most reliable and effective tools (although earnings report submission practices may be due for review). Besides exposing and sending press releases to various media sources on the web, wires often offer a variety of other services, including social media distribution features.
A new report on press release distribution services, published this week by business software review site G2 Crowd, ranks six products to help purchasers in their selections. Cision, PR Newswire and Business Wire were named Leaders in the report, receiving strong customer satisfaction scores with a large market presence, while PR Underground was named a High Performer, earning strong customer satisfaction marks with smaller market presence scores.
Across all providers, reviewers reported the product they use meets their requirements at an average rate of 86 percent, and on average reviewers said they were 80 percent likely to recommend the product they use. Many reviewers specifically noted the large expense of press release distribution tools, even if they had relatively large budgets. Those same products, however, also offer a span of distribution and audience targeting that relatively smaller services don’t.
That said, most users across the board wished they could get a greater return on investment, especially in terms of targeting specific audiences.
Some highlights from the reviews on G2 Crowd:
- “[Cision] makes vital information for PR professionals easily accessible…Ultimately, I’m pitching every week, so Cision keeps all of the essential contact information, contact preferences, outlet information, etc. all in one place and easy to use.” – Jess Kulas, PR Account Executive at z2 Marketing
- “The [PR Newswire] online submission form is extremely easy and quick to use. It was easy to train other employees on, and it takes the guesswork out of tracking down the correct contact list for a given press release. We got… better traction with our announcements with each submission. I loved how quickly I would get a phone call confirming my submission and [get] it reviewed…This saved me so much time!” – Lindsey Jodts, Marketing Coordinator at Lincoln International
- “The comprehensive tools included in Business Wire allow you to closely control the distribution of your press releases. Users have complete control of the…location broken down by major cities, regions and states. You can also pinpoint the industries that pertain to your…release to [ensure that it is read] by your target audience.” – Gordon Gillette, Marketing Director at SupplyDen
- “[PR Underground’s] submission console is uncluttered and easy to use. They offer a no-hassle cancellation. They’re very responsive if there’s an issue with your press release. As they claim, publication of a press release did result in a top Google News rank for us – several times.” – Sean Miller, Co-Founder of Readerly
Satisfaction rankings are generated from the user reviews, and market presence is calculated from vendor size, market share, and social impact. Based on a combination of these scores, each software solution is categorized as a Leader, High Performer, Contender or Niche. The report is available for purchase here. Access offers the original data for filtering and weighting, as well as individual profiles of each platform with the most helpful positive and negative reviews, detailed company information, user satisfaction ratings, feature scores and customer metrics.
The report is based on more than 380 reviews written by PR professionals, marketers and other business professionals. Of the more than 25 vendors listed in G2 Crowd’s PR distribution category, the ranked products each received 10 or more reviews to qualify for inclusion. The research was done before the recent newswire-hacking scandal was exposed.
Source: G2 Crowd; edited by Richard Carufel