– Ashmita Bhagati, PR Trainee
This post is the ultimate proof that bookish knowledge, while necessary is not enough.
As someone who likes to be extra prepared and did every possible research on the field of PR, after actually entering the field, everything made me realize that whatever I had studied, all the case studies, every YouTube video, each article or blog post written about it fell short of even scratching the surface in understanding the inner workings that go into the field of Public Relations.
After spending two weeks as a trainee in the field, this is what I wish I knew before starting my journey. In this post, I will be sharing the three most striking revelations I had about PR as a newcomer with only a textbook understanding of the field.
1. How closely you have to work with every form of media out there!
When I say I did not anticipate the number of hours I would spend surfing newspapers and the newspaper websites- I mean it! Every morning starts with you reading out the entirety of several newspapers and surfing the web for stories, major happenings, or hunting down client mentions. You definitely need to keep your reading speeds heightened. This is essential for you to know the industry that the client is working in, the latest developments, and how your client is positioned in the market vs competition. Cannot do that without reading up on it.
However, if you are someone who is not very keen on reading, the good news is that you get the hang of it pretty fast. And after you become familiar, skimming through media seems more of a daily activity than a task. You only then need to work on your nose for ‘what’ is news.
2. You NEED to have flair for creative content writing!!
So, while mostly anyone with a passion and enthusiasm to learn can get into PR, it won’t hurt to have a strong writing background. From writing press releases to coming up with pitches for various stories, there is a lot of writing work that goes into your daily work life as a PR executive. So, be prepared with your creative juices flowing and your fingers literally flying on the keyboard.
This is important for your life as a trainee. All that reading will result in more ideas. While at this stage you might not be on a media outreach or be a client interface, your biggest contribution will come in the form of well articulate pitches that will compel the other side to want to know more.
3. You don’t need to be from a media background!
Yes, totally true! While it would be somewhat of an advantage for you to come from a media background like Journalism or Mass Communication, it is not exactly the mandatory qualification required for the job. Most people learn on the job.
So, while industry-specific things like press releases, etc. may not be something you already know how to go about, you will eventually get the hang of things.
An honourable mention should go to the point that as a beginner in the field, it is important to inculcate the habit of becoming a fast learner and adapter. It is important to learn new tasks every day because there are that many things to learn! Every new client comes with a new set of tasks and work values, so keeping up with them and the field, in general, is beneficial. Also, the field of PR is ever-changing with the waves of trends and cultural references helping navigate the flow. So, being able to adapt to new trends and coming up with innovative ideas and solutions as quickly as possible is one of the greatest assets a person could have.
The field of Public Relations is not something that can only be entered by a certain niche of people nor is it impossibly hard to make a successful career out of it. The main quality as a beginner you NEED to have is the thirst to learn, determination and sincerity towards the work, and an enthusiastic outlook for your future.
And that is it. For the rest… join the field.
What else would you add to this list?
About Nucleus PR
The 13-year old firm has clients across multiple verticals. With an already established presence in 4 major metros, they have successfully created a strong affiliate network across 88 towns across the country via a team of trusted professional experts. With its inclusion in the exclusive and prestigious worldwide collaborative network of PR firms – PRBI Boutiques International, it adds brilliant minds from over 40 agencies across 14 countries to their resource pool. As the first members from the Asian sub-continent, they represent the entire region in the prestigious international PR network. Their current portfolio includes entertainment, lifestyle, media, hospitality and corporate clients across MNCs, SMEs, and Startups.