Can you think analytically? Do you work well under pressure? Does imagination and creativity ooze from your every pore? Combine these traits with great communication skills, self-confidence, diplomacy and superb organizational and planning skills and you just might have what it takes to be a public relations professional. PR professionals understand public perception and can structure their efforts to address whatever type of audience they’re addressing, whether it’s a minority group, disgruntled shareholders, or parents concerned about Product X’s sugar content.
A big part of the job responsiblities of a public relations professional involves writing press releases, reviewing published articles (to make sure your company is accurately portrayed in the media), pitching story ideas to reporters, fielding requests from writers, setting up interviews and creating and distributing media kits to the press. Better established PR firms have honed their methods over many years, and have developed structured learning opportunities and a clearly-defined career path.
Individuals how have earned a graduated degree or masters degree in public relations might find that they have access to a wide variety of potential career opportunities, Learn about some of these career options for graduates of a public relations masters program or other public relations degree program.
Publicists are the cheerleaders for obscure personalities and the spokespeople for high-profile clients. They must generate press coverage for their clients to get them maximum exposure. They also must maintain positive relationships with journalists to ensure that the media will be receptive to their pitches. Radio and television special reports and magazine feature articles can often be traced back to an independent publicist or public relations firm. Specialists also plan events and programs such as speaking engagements, and may be called upon to write speeches for politicians and business executives.
Public relations account managers work direclty with the clients. This role might involve writing press releases, planning events, tracking trends for media coverage opportunities, representing the client/company at press conferences, writing speeches for the company’s CEO, and submitting client products for industry awards.
Corporate communications departments were once considered to exist exclusively to provide damage control during events like the Exxon Valdez or the Tylenol cyanide scare. However, the work of corporate communications professionals is much broader than simply managing a crisis. Corporate communications specialsists might also serve as spokespersons or expert media coaches for CEOs. The corporate communications departments might also help generate major press coverage in industry and business trade publications or other media outlets. Corporate communications professionals also develop relationships with government officials and lobbying groups that may have influence over legislation affecting a company’s growth and development.
Media relations specialists focus on developing relationships between the media and their client (individual or corporate). A media relations specialist is invested in keeping the public informed of an organization's or individual's policies, mission, benevolent acts, or other news worthy endeavors, in a manner that portrays the client in a positive light. Working in media relations means coordinating with those involved in producing news segments and mass media features. The ultimate goal of media relations is getting lots of positive coverage without having to pay for advertising.