Best Brand Monitoring Tools
 · 15 min read · March 22, 2024

13 Best Brand Monitoring Tools for PR Managers Compared (2024)

Zuzanna Dora

Brand monitoring helps to track online brand mentions to assess public perception, pinpoint trends, uphold reputations and evaluate PR campaigns.

Understanding who's discussing your brand or your client's and their sentiments, remaining well-informed, swiftly addressing issues, and fostering a positive brand image are key tactics in PR. 

In the first part of this article, we describe the top 13 brand monitoring tools that let you track brand mentions:

  1. Prowly
  2. Semrush
  3. Brandwatch
  4. Brand24
  5. Sprout Social
  6. Mention
  7. Google Alerts
  8. Talkwalker
  9. Hootsuite
  10. BuzzSumo
  11. Awario
  12. Keyhole
  13. X Pro

In the second part, you'll find answers to the following questions:

Prowly lets you monitor press hits and social media mentions online using advanced filters and AI. Try it for free for 7 days, discover insights about your brand, and see Prowly's full PR potential.

Best brand monitoring tools

We've included some popular brand monitoring tools - but not just that! Find the one that best suits your needs.

1. Prowly

  • Price: starting from $258 monthly
  • Free trial: Yes
  • All-in-one PR tool: Yes
Brand monitoring tool: Prowly

Prowly is the only tool on our list that's focused entirely on a PR specialist's needs. It covers your entire PR workflow - with an online newsroom, media database, AI press release creator, and, of course, tracking brand mentions.

Track brand mentions

Prowly's Media Monitoring tool helps you track brand mentions and analyze metrics that are PR-specific, like AVE, SOV or outlet reach. Together with regular metrics, like reach or sentiment, you can estimate the effects of each campaign.

Prowly’s AI detects the context, sentiment, and over 15 other attributes of every press hit and social mention. Leverage this data to establish tailored filters for viewing only the mentions that matter most to you.

Examples of filters:

  • Keyword combinations & context
  • Topic of each mention and website (1000+ available)
  • Estimated mention reach
  • Region and language
  • Platform (Instagram, X, Facebook, Tiktok, Youtube)

Build custom reports

The top brand tools make your life easier with clean and neat reports. In Prowly, you can generate a coverage report whenever you need it - to sum up a particular month or a full campaign. Create coverage reports tailored to what you need with multiple metrics, chart types, and filters. Show how your outcomes correlate with business objectives and save the time needed to fill the report manually.

2. Semrush’s Brand Monitoring App

  • Price: $59 for the add-on
  • Free trial or demo: you can try the tool for free and schedule free training
  • All-in-one PR tool: No
Brand monitoring tool powered by Prowly

Semrush is a comprehensive tool for online marketing - from SEO and content to paid promotion and PR. It's often chosen by agencies and huge players, and that's why it made our list.

If you work for an agency or a big company, chances are you already use Semrush. If your company already uses several marketing tools, you might consider switching to an all-in-one solution.

Then, for brand monitoring purposes, you can add the Brand Monitoring App, developed by Prowly. It covers the entire media monitoring functionality from Prowly's original platform.

3. Brandwatch

  • Price: pricing available upon request
  • Free trial or demo: you can book a meeting
  • All-in-one PR tool: No
Brand monitoring tools: Brandwatch

Brandwatch is one of the most advanced brand monitoring software offers on our list. Brandwatch tracks brand mentions both in online and offline areas. For example, you can access paywalled news, broadcasts, YouTube, or TikTok - with datasets going back more than 10 years.

To manage this impressive list of data sources, you get advanced analytics solutions, backed by machine learning algorithms. Also, you can track your data on real-time dashboards.

4. Brand24

  • Price: starting from $79 monthly
  • Free trial or demo: you can try it for 14 days
  • All-in-one PR tool: No
Online brand monitoring services: Brand24

Brand24 is focused solely on your brand's online presence. You can analyze all publicly available data coming from web pages, social media, or - and this is pretty unique - podcasts and newsletters.

With sentiment analysis, estimated awareness metrics, and alerts, you'll be the first to find out about an upcoming crisis.

5. Sprout Social

  • Price: starting from $249 monthly
  • Free trial or demo: you can try it for 30 days or get a demo call
  • All-in-one PR tool: No
Brand monitoring tools: Sprout Social

Sprout Social is a complex social media management platform. It offers social listening features that you can use to monitor brand reputation, like profile or location monitoring.

For each query, it retrieves all historical data, so you can start your analysis right away. With complex queries and filters, you'll get valuable results.

For PR purposes, you can also use trend identification and influencer recognition.

6. Mention

  • Price: starting from $49 monthly 
  • Free trial or demo: there's a 14-day free trial available and you can book a demo call
  • All-in-one PR tool: No
Brand monitoring tools: Mention

Mention is another tool for social media management, combining social listening with post-scheduling. You can track brand mentions from blogs, online news, social media channels and videos (including YouTube and TikTok).

What's more, you can track chosen review pages (like Booking or G2) and social media accounts to make sure you don't miss new content.

Mention also lets you evaluate each hit with sentiment, reach and influence score. In higher priced plans, it also offers insights and more advanced analytics.

7. Google Alerts

  • Price: free
  • All-in-one PR tool: No
Free brand monitoring tools: Google Alerts

Google Alerts is the only free tool on our list. It's popular, really easy to use, and (again) free, but you might struggle with getting actual value out of it.

When Google indexes a new page that mentions a phrase you wish to observe, you get an email notification. And basically, that's it. If you need a simple tool or you're just getting started, it can be enough.

For professional PR purposes, it's pretty limited. You get the results with a delay, it doesn't cover sources like social media channels, and it might not send you all relevant results. Plus, you don't get analytics, like sentiment info, reach, or trends in your data.

If you want to learn more, check out our article on Google Alerts alternatives. It covers in detail why it is worth making the switch.

8. Talkwalker

  • Price: available upon request
  • Free trial or demo: you can book a demo call
  • All-in-one PR tool: No
Brand monitoring tool: Talkwalker

Talkwalker is one of the most comprehensive brand tracking tools on the market. It covers over 30 social media channels and 150 million data sources, giving you insights into even the most niche topics.

It provides your PR campaigns with sentiment, reach, and engagement analytics. You can use the advanced Boolean search to get only relevant resources. What's more, Talkwalker also tracks visual content, meaning you get information from images and videos.

You can compare your brand reputation with the competition based on sentiment, engagement and reach. Also, the tool will assist you in finding appropriate influencers.

9. Hootsuite

  • Price: starting from $99 monthly, though Social Listening is an add-on
  • Free trial or demo: a free 30-day trial (or up to 60% off the plans if you skip it)
  • All-in-one PR tool: No
Brand monitoring tools: Hootsuite

Hootsuite was created for social media management - with post scheduling, the best time for posting indicators, and a social media inbox. It does offer some social listening options that can help you with brand monitoring.

Hootsuite analyzes most major social media sites; monitoring mentions, keywords, and hashtags. It also integrates with other brand monitoring tools, like Talkwalker or Brandwatch.

10. BuzzSumo

  • Price: starting from $199 monthly 
  • Free trial or demo: a free 30-day trial
  • All-in-one PR tool: No
Brand monitoring tool: BuzzSumo

BuzzSumo gives you tools to make some buzz about your company or client - either via PR or marketing strategies. It has a wide range of tools to get content ideas, spot influencers, or support content research.

In terms of brand monitoring, you can track brand mentions for you or your competitors. Something else interesting, you can get alerts when given authors or outlets publish something new. If your PR outreach strategy involves engaging with specific people, this option can prove valuable.

11. Awario

  • Price: starting at $49 monthly 
  • Free trial or demo: free trial available
  • All-in-one PR tool: No
Brand tracking software: Awario

Awario is a full-time brand monitoring tool. They have their own web crawler that analyzes over 13 million pages daily, together with social media channels. You can look for results in given locations and use the Boolean search to refine your query.

To analyze the data, you get a simple dashboard with the crucial information at hand. In higher priced plans, you can download white-labeled reports with brand mention analysis.

12. Keyhole

  • Price: starts at $179 monthly
  • Free trial or demo: free trial available
  • All-in-one PR tool: No
Online brand monitoring for social media: Keyhole

Keyhole was designed with social media platforms in mind. It lets you analyze profiles, hashtags or phrases across different social media channels.

If you run lots of PR campaigns on social media channels, this solution is your ally. You can get insights on your performance, see the most engaging post for your searched term, or find the best influencer for your campaign. What's more, it comes with detailed reports and comparisons.

Apart from the social listening options, you can use it as your social media planning tool. With scheduling and profile analytics, Keyhole helps you squeeze more from social media - both in marketing and PR-wise.

13. X Pro (formerly TweetDeck)

  • Price: included in the X (Twitter) Premium subscription
  • Free trial or demo: No
  • All-in-one PR tool: No
XPro - X (Twitter) management tool

X Pro - formerly called TweetDeck - used to be one of the most useful free tools for heavy Twitter users. It lets you open a few X threads on one screen and follow the conversations simultaneously.

Although it's not full-time brand monitoring software, we decided to include it here for those of you who already spend hours on X threads. It's definitely a nice addition to keep the conversations flowing!

Nevertheless, it won't be enough for more advanced insights. For example, it lacks social media reach or sentiment analysis.

Right now, it's available only with an X Premium subscription.

What is a brand monitoring tool used for? 

Short answer: it lets you evaluate the effectiveness of your PR efforts.

Brand monitoring tools can help you to:

  • Measure PR effectiveness
  • Prevent PR crises
  • Look for partnerships
  • Watch your competition and industry
  • Discover new sales opportunities
  • Take care of customers
  • Plan PR Strategies
  • Get context for product development

Brand monitoring brings in important intel for your company - not only in the PR area. And that's an argument you might use when requesting a budget for a brand monitoring tool. Your brand monitoring efforts can bring serious results in areas developing the business.

Measure PR effectiveness

Each PR campaign costs your company (or your clients) money - even if the only resource you use is time. Brand monitoring tools help you assess the impact and effects of your campaigns, putting real numbers and value on them.

When you have tools to talk about the tangible effects instead of perception and subjective opinions, it gets way easier to improve your actions. And show the effect of the money invested.

This is just a brief intro. For more in-depth analysis, you can see our article on how to measure PR success.

Prevent PR crises

Sudden drops in brand reputation could often be prevented in hindsight. Tools used for monitoring brand sentiment allow you to notice the first signs of threat, like the first negative post or wave of criticism hitting the industry.

If you want to learn more about dealing with this challenge, read our PR crisis management guide.

Look for partnerships

Brand tracking software is the perfect tool to assess your cooperation opportunities - from partnerships with companies to influencers. Check out their brand sentiment and reputation, and in what contexts they commonly appear.

It's also a great way to find out who would make the perfect partner for your strategy. Brand monitoring tools let you spot the most influential person in a given niche.

Watch your competition and industry

Brand monitoring simplifies competition research. With notification digests, you can stay on top of what's going on in the industry. With changes in brand reputation, you can analyze the situation and prevent some industry crises from hitting your company.

Discover new sales opportunities

Is your sales team on the lookout for potential leads? Your brand monitoring tool, set up for relevant phrases, can point out new sales opportunities. They can get notifications for all posts on social media channels where people are looking for recommendations.

Take care of customers

Some brand mentions on social media posts are, in their nature, customer complaints. When your customer service finds out about them in time and reacts, your brand can get additional points. Also, you can use it to celebrate some of the positive reviews and mentions of your customer service team!

Plan PR Strategies

Brand monitoring tools play a crucial role in shaping PR strategies by providing insights into how a brand is perceived in the market. These tools help track brand mentions, sentiment analysis and competitor activities, allowing PR professionals to:

  • make informed decisions 
  • identify trends
  • engage with their target audience effectively
  • manage their brand's reputation
  • respond to emerging issues swiftly and ultimately enhance their overall PR strategy

Get context for product development

Usually, there are just too many ideas for product development. An additional, automated source of feedback - like brand mentions - can help the team in prioritizing features. They can also track new ideas or the reasons why some users choose to go with competitive brands.

How do you monitor a brand?

Brand mention monitoring is essentially gathering all the relevant mentions in a way that lets you turn insights into actions.

You could do it manually, searching for your brand name, or using easy-to-set-up tools like Google Alerts. Yet this is tedious and time-consuming. Apart from the fact that you'd surely miss at least some of your mentions, in a much worse case, you might even misjudge your brand reputation.

Or, you can use software for monitoring brand mentions and other relevant keywords. The best brand monitoring tools catch mentions even before they get indexed in Google search!

What is a brand tracking tool?

What are monitoring tools? They are based on crawlers - robots that go through (crawl) the Internet, looking for specific information. Depending on the tool or technology it uses, you may access varied sources; like forums, websites, social media or offline news; in search of people mentioning your brand.

When you set up a project, choosing keywords, geographical area, or other factors that are important for you, the brand tracking software starts to gather information. In most online monitoring tools, you can get alerts when relevant brand mentions are found.

Most monitoring tools give you access to analytics. These often consist of one main brand tracking dashboard and more detailed views. This way, you can easily compare data for given campaigns or timeframes.

Beware, though, that keeping data for a long time is costly. That's why some news monitoring tools start gathering data only after you set up a project and store it only for a fixed period. Tools that let you go way back in time usually reflect it in higher pricing.

What is a brand monitoring tool used for?

Basically, you can use it for three things:

  • analyze what has happened
  • monitor what's going on
  • and foresee events

Each approach works for several areas, like PR, marketing, product development, or sales and customer service. That's why brand tracking software is widely used across modern organizations.

How to choose a brand monitoring tool?

There's no simple answer, but a few tips can make the process easier.

Your company needs

As you'll see, the tools on our list address different use cases. Prowly is highly focused on the PR side, as it provides you with complimentary PR tools, whereas Hootsuite or Mention are focused on marketing. You can try to look further than the PR team. Also, you might find out that your company already uses a tool with a brand monitoring app, like Semrush.

Your company budget

This one goes without saying, but there's one point to think about. Brand monitoring tools are useful not only to the PR team. If you can prove the benefits go company-wide, you can actually get a higher budget to allocate.

The look and feel

If it's possible, go and test a few solutions before sticking with one. This way, you can check to be sure it fits your team's needs - in terms of the UX, functionality and overall feel.

The best brand monitoring tools offer you a free trial period or demo call.

Choose your solution

The choice might be difficult, but it's well worth implementing a brand monitoring tool in your daily work. With this kind of intel, you'll be empowered to make better decisions and improve the quality of your PR results.

Read a few more comparisons, try a few chosen platforms yourself, and get the benefits rolling in from brand monitoring. Good luck!