A day in the life of a PR professional
While Public Relations is certainly a profession most people know of very little understand what we actually do and what happens day-to-day. A common misconception is that we are always ‘lunching’ and basically having a jolly good time putting on parties. True this is a very simplified and ignorant view of the industry but I have certainly heard it ‘joked’ about on more than one occasion in my career, so today we will take a quick look at a few fundamental things that every practitioner does each day (well at least at Ignite PR & Marketing we do).
1) Plan the day: Time is money so a review of the day ahead, the priorities to conquer and key deadlines to meet that day will ensure the next 8 hours are productive and efficient and maximized for both the client and agency.
2) Media Monitoring: One of the key aspects of our jobs is ensuring we are abreast of current affairs that may influence our clients’ brands or provide great fodder for a story opportunity, so scouring the key news sites, local newspapers, industry blogs and newsletters is an integral part of a good account manager’s job.
3) Writing , Writing , Writing : No day is complete without a few solid hours of research, interviews and writing covering items like press releases, blogs, newsletters and social media entries to name but a few.
4) Pitch and follow up: Most days time will be spent pitching a story to media with the aim of achieving media coverage to satisfy our clients’ voracious appetites for being ‘seen’ in the market place. Of course it’s all targeted media, so time is spent qualifying the media contacts and ensuring each media receives a story that is relevant to the publication. Sometimes it will work but on the whole a ‘cookie cutter’ approach won’t generate the right results.
5) Client Relations: Clients are our bread and butter so ensuring they feel ‘loved’ is a very important part of a PR professional’s job. Nothing replaces face-to-face communication but given most agencies will work with clients across Australia it is important to be proficient communicators via phone, email and Skype is important. At our agency each manager has multiple clients to work on each day so we have a rule of thumb of a least 3 points of contact a week (if not more).
PR is an exciting and challenging career but there is a considerable amount of time spent behind the desk strategising, writing and working towards helping clients fulfill their communication goals. I’ve never worked in-house but consultancy life is fast paced, challenging, thoroughly enjoyable and satisfying. It’s not a good choice for people who can’t work under pressure but if you hate being bored and like seeing the difference your work can make, PR is a good choice.