PR is a fascinating career that many people think they could be quite good at. After all, we have all seen a PR account director on television and in movies and it all looks pretty simple. It seems like there is little else involved in PR jobs than making something bad appear good to the general public. However, the reality is quite different and it really isn’t as easy as that. It takes a special kind of person to be able to be good at PR, someone who is a strong communicator and a very creative thinker. Also, starting a career in PR would generally require you to at least have some form of formal training in PR, preferable a university degree.
It is likely that your local college or university will offer some form of PR or media program. By following these courses, you make yourself a whole lot more marketable. Also, you will learn the jargon, processes and standards of practice that are commonly used with PR. There are also a number of short courses you could choose to follow if you don’t have the time to go for a full degree in PR. However, the better educated you are, the more chance you stand of landing really good PR jobs.
Defining Your Expertise
One hugely important part of launching a career in PR is to be clear about where you expertise lies. Do you have particular experience in a specific kind of subject for instance? Within PR, you will need to market products or ideas, so your first task should be to market yourself. One area of expertise that is particularly relevant is social media, so do make sure you immerse yourself in websites such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter at the very least. This will also allow you to start networking and making contacts in the PR world and you may even get to meet a PR account director. It is all about having the right contacts.
Getting Your Foot in the Door
The world of PR is cut throat and it can be very hard to get into it. One great way to get invaluable expertise is by volunteering for a network or non-profit organization, or even a local business. You offer your services for free and in return you get experience and a good reference. Small businesses and local charities don’t generally have the budget for a paid PR account director, so you will also be providing assistance to a very noteworthy cause. To get your foot in the door, you need to be willing to work incredibly hard. Expect long hours and little recognition until results are actually visible.
It may be very difficult to launch a career in PR, but with the right knowledge and expertise, you should be able to achieve anything you want and get those PR jobs. Don’t give up!
Carlo Pandian is a freelance writer an blogs for Media Recruitment on pr jobs, careers, and public relations. When he’s not online or cycling around town, you can’t get him out of the kitchen for his love of food.