Making the most of your time at school as a PR student is essential to getting a powerful start to your career. Here are 5 tips every PR student should follow:
Never stop networking—As a future PR pro, networking is a skill you’ll have to master. Now is the time to start sharpening your networking skills. Consider every person that you come into contact with at school—professors, fellow students, visiting speakers, club members, etc.—as a new member of your network. Focus on building relationships, and take the initiative to get out there and meet people.
Of course, you can’t talk about networking in 2013 without mentioning social networking. An active social media presence can be a powerful tool for you as you start your career. Take the time to be active on social networks, making special effort to connect with the right people. You can even start your own blog to share your thoughts and increase your influence.
Get journalism experience—I’ve often said that it’s important for PR pros to get in the news room so they know what it’s like to be a reporter. When you start to see things from a reporter’s perspective, you learn how to craft better pitches as well as how to interact with reporters in a better way. As a student, you can gain journalism experience by writing for your school’s newspaper.
Get as much feedback as you can—You’re young and you still have a whole lot to learn. Take advantage of your time as a student to get as much feedback from others as you can. Don’t be afraid to receive criticism from your professors or your managers at your internship. View all feedback as the opportunity to better yourself.
Read, read, read—You need to make the time to read about PR on a daily basis. You have to stay current with what’s going on in the PR industry. Follow some of the top PR blogs, read all the PR books you can get your hands on, and even read the news just so you can continue to improve your understanding of how to tell stories reporters and audiences love.
Write, write, write—Writing is a skill every PR pro must possess. You need to learn how to write clearly, concisely, and compellingly. Don’t just rely on the writing you have to do for class. Start blogging, keep a journal, post actively on social networks, write mock press releases, write for the school paper…just do as much writing as you can so you can build up these incredibly essential muscles.
What are some other tips you’d offer to PR students? Share your thoughts by commenting below.