Public Relations as an industry is one of the most competitive in the market. It requires a great deal of commitment, excellent communication skills, adapting to spontaneous work hours, among others. While its a job that is asking the very best of you, its also one that is very rewarding.
You can choose between the two work zones of PR – agency or organization / in-house agency. Working in-house or at an agency have advantages and disadvantages alike. PR agencies work with multiple clients and that gives you the opportunity to explore various industry sectors and grow your experience. Although, if you like to focus on one thing at a time, agency life might not be fit for you. On the other hand, working in-house for an organization may seem repetitive and monotonous after sometime, as you work on only that one account, day in and day out. However, it also gives you a certain kind of job security to be a part of a big organization and also provides better chances of pay hikes.
Unlike advertising, wherein the professionals pay to get media visibility, PR professionals work at getting editorial features. They approach the editorial teams of print publications, websites or producers of TV and Radio channels to help create a story around the brand, and hence provide media coverage for no extra cost. The basic aim of Public Relations is to enhance brand reputation while portraying them in a positive light.
To be a successful in the field of Public Relations, you need to have an innate ability to absorb what the brand is all about and communicate its ideologies effectively. Quite naturally, if you want editors to listen to you and write about your brand, you will need to convince them first. You need to be able to weave creative outlines and draft excellently worded media pitches. It is imperative that you not only mirror the brand in your communication, but also do it in a way that is appealing and engaging.
Here are some key points to help you start your career in PR:
- Decide whether you want to work for an agency or for an organization / In – House Agency
- Research to find out your area of interest, whether it’s the Government sector, fashion, food, celebrity, charitable organizations, sports, etc.
- Shortlist the area you want to work in and approach relevant companies or agencies.
- Read up on the agency or the earlier published articles on the brand that you intend to approach – Be thorough
- Challenge yourself and step out of your comfort zone
- Shed all inhibitions – be out there while cold calling
- Be curious and pay attention to detail – both about the brand as well as the media outlet you are approaching for press coverage
- Be creative – come up with campaigns that will help your brand compliment the profile of the media platform being approached
- Be pro-active are ready to multi-task
While PR does give you the opportunity to work closely with high profile celebrities/personalities and attend grand events, it’s not all just the glitz and glam. You need to be able to put all of your skills to use and create your own mark.