For all those out there who were inspired by these illustrious career paths, here’s a few tips on how to develop a long and successful career in the PR industry.
6. Get creative with job applications
“Approach agencies you’re interested in working for, directly – and in a way that reflects the agency’s personality. In today’s competitive landscape your CV and approach needs to stand out. Speed is always impressed by proactive, creative people – and these graduates always win points over grads that are relying on a recruitment agent to work on their behalf” – Clare English | Business Development Director | Speed Communications
5. Well-roundedness trumps all
“Learn to write well; learn to speak well; learn to understand what makes people and organisations work well. PRs require a good general knowledge and a good feel for issues and how events and experiences are perceived by different people from different perspectives. Last, but not least, keep things simple and clear” – Paul Seaman | Founder | 21st Century PR Issues
4. Make sure employers know you
“Be visible before you need to be visible, e.g., make sure PR agency leaders “know” you via Twitter (and other social networks) before they even see your resume. Share relevant content – including as much of the agency-related content you can find and make your prospective employers feel as if they are important to you; that you value their content and insights” – Todd Defren | Principal | Shift Communications
3. Hustle and participate
“You have to get creative about generating experience. Volunteer to help out a not-for-profit — they always need help. Get internships and work your butt off. Assemble a portfolio that shows your work. Blog and use multimedia…ask and answer questions on LinkedIn, Ragan and Melcrum. Network like crazy! Look up #prstudchat on Twitter — you’ll meet fellow students and educators, as well as professionals — they do a twitter chat monthly that’s worth participating in” – Sean Williams | Founder | Communication Ammo
2. Produce and curate content
“Use your time at university to get ahead by immersing yourself in publishing tools and social networks. Build an online portfolio on LinkedIn, create a Twitter network and engage with PR practitioners and journalists, and create and publish your own content via a blog, Flickr, YouTube. You’ll stand out from the crowd and will create all sorts of connections that will put you in a strong position when you graduate and look for work” – Stephen Waddington | Managing Director | Speed Communications
1. Read, learn, write, read, learn, write, read, learn and WRITE!
“Write as much as you can. It is very difficult to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear when it comes to writing. You generally either have it or you really have to work extra hard. And even if your writing skills are silky like Cesc Fabregas’ dribbling, you still need to work at it. What helps with this is reading. No, not reading frigging tweets and FB posts, but literature. You know, books. And real writers, not Dan Brown. For example, Faulkner, Dickens, De Lillo, White. Etcetera. The other thing you need is work experience. That gets you work. That = experience. That gets you your first job. Then it’s up to you. But never stop learning. Never switch off. A dead switch is a dead life. Your call” – Craig Pearce | Founder | Strategic Communication