“You wanna be on top?” - Tyra Banks
Not literally but you get the idea. Working in this super fast paced industry is equally exhilarating as well as exhausting. There are many tips out there that will point you in the right direction of becoming the best at your job but we believe that these 5 take precedence over the many out there.
Be A Go-Getter
Being a go getter means being the person to take initiative. You don’t always have to be the smartest, or the most creative but what matters most to any employer is that you’re actively seeking for challenges and new things to learn. You may not always come out on top but it’s only natural and failure is always a good reminder to not get comfortable.
You have to be someone who wants something and will work for it! A lot of the time you’ll be chasing after your clients or the media and it can be exhausting, but as long as you’re fueled by the “want” you’ll be able to do anything. Be that person to make the first call or to send that email. Set your eyes on scoring that account and do everything in your power to make it a reality.
Always go the extra mile.
Explore / Be Adventurous
Working in PR is a fulfilling job and you’re learning things everyday. When a new client comes in, don’t stick to what you usually do. Explore new ways to disseminate information. Think of things that have not been done before or that might catch someones attention. From our experience, having unique events or something that isn’t from the usual template has served us well and will often be more memorable to the media, giving you a little upper hand. During brainstorming sessions it’s always good to throw ideas out even if you think they might not be the best. Your team is there to help and think alongside you and together you will always come up with something amazing.
Talk to your media friends and find out what works for them and what doesn’t. Does humor work for them better or does getting straight to the point? What kind of information do they want to see first? Do things with reason and not just for the sake of doing it. Remember, you’ll still have to justify your strategies. It’s also a great opportunity to go to other events and see how another company does things and what the media think of that.
We all know the joys of picking up a book over the weekend and doing it for work is no different. Opening a book is like peering into someone else’s brain, it’s as much knowledge as it is experience. While you’ll have your own fair share of adventures theres always more to gain. Right now we’re chewing our way through “Made To Stick” by Chip and Dan Heath and we’re learning on how to make something ‘sticky’ as well as breaking down case studies of past campaigns and research discovering what works and what doesn’t.
These past time readings are always a great way to reflect on your past campaigns or PR activities and a chance for you to think, “What could I have done differently that might have worked better?”. Event post-mortems exist exactly for this reason. Use this time to questions yourselves and make notes for future campaigns. Theres always room for improvement!
It feels great when someone looks at you and goes, “Oh I know you! (Insert Name) right?”. You get all flushed and feel a little bit more important for a short while. The media are no different. Being recognised and known for your work is one of the signs that you’re doing something right. Remembering names and faces is part of our job and it’s an attainable skill even if you might be horrible at them now. If you’re bad at this, #mouganjeong.
There are many tips and tricks to remembering peoples names. Maybe get their number and ask “How do I spell your name again?” or assign them a nickname thats related to their initials. It’s also a good idea to be honest and just ask their name again so long as you only do it once. People like feeling special and (hint) personalising emails does just that.
Pay Attention To Detail
You know the saying the Devil is in the details? That’s what we truly believe. There is never a project that is too big or too small for you to overlook something. PR often comes together with crisis management and a large part of it is not just about managing a crisis thats happening but preventing the crisis from happening all together. You might overlook a name in a caption or not have enough seat for your guests and these small matters are crises of their own.
PR is about the nitty gritty and it’s our job to make sure those details are in place. A great skill to hone is your imagination. When you think about an event, it’s great to be able to visualise it in your head almost as if walking through the setup in person. Are the banners or buntings in place? Do we have enough branding for photos? Are the hashtags visible and available? These are just some of the many questions that run through our minds and it’s up to YOU as a PR practitioner to sort these details to make the best of an event for your client.
At the end of the day PR is what it is, Public Relations. It’s about being the person that you would like to talk to if you were on the other side wether client or media. Put yourself in their shoes (best you can) and deliver what you yourself would expect.