PR for beginners: How to get started in Public Relations
Updated: Jun 1
The world of PR consists of relationships. Every business has a relationship with not only their customers but their employees as well .PR professionals use a variety of tools to implement definitive PR plans for businesses. Those tools include a combination of social media, media tours, written material and newsletters. Oftentimes public relations practices get mistaken with advertising and marketing; however, each serves its own purpose. Public relations and advertising are great mediums for effective marketing. In Public Relations there is more emphasis on creating and maintaining relationships between a company and its audience.
The world of Public Relations is more focused on the personal and professional connections you make, maintain, and utilize. Try and reach out to every PR professional you know for feedback on your resume or industry tips. Try and set up informational interviews with any PR connections you may have, this way you learn everything you know about a company and get to know potential supervisors without any pressure.
Although it would be advantageous to major in communications however it is not crucial to have in order to have a successful PR career. The most successful public relations professionals have a variety of different skill sets at their disposable. Having great writing skills is also a major plus and crucial to your success in the PR industry as you’ll constantly be writing emails, press materials, blog posts and social media content. Try and take courses in writing, and do everything in your power to ensure you’re at the top of your game. A useful tip when applying for a job is crafting your initial cover letter or introductory email as you would a very important pitch to a journalist. Make sure you do your research and tailor your outreach to that company, and address your letter to a specific person.
Asking for feedback is extremely important whether you’re in an internship or a full-time position, make sure you are receiving consistent feedback from your supervisors. Try and be open to constructive criticism and use it as a way to improve your work habit. It's always helpful to think of criticism as someone taking the time to give you feedback because they believe in your skills and capabilities.
Go out of your way to educate yourself on the industry you’re interested in pursuing, both from the product and journalistic perspective. If you're interested in hospitality then spend each morning reading all the relevant publications for restaurant or hotel reviews. Be present as much you can by speaking up, expressing your ideas, and by learning everything you can. Never turn down an opportunity to learn, or turn down any task. Do whatever you can to learn as much as possible make yourself stand out in the process.