Think you have a good idea what working in PR is all about? You may have seen a TV show (think Samantha on Sex and the City) or otherwise have an idea of what a glamorous life PR pros lead. This may also make you want to get into public relations yourself to get into this fabulous, high octane lifestyle.
But there are a few things you should know first. PR isn’t quite what you think it is or you’ve seen on TV. While it is an exciting and sometimes crazy field, it isn’t all fun and games, and is actually a ton of work! Here are a few facts you should know before you get into PR.
You’ll Learn a Bunch About Stuff You Might Not Care About
If you’re doing PR for your own business, that’s great! You get to talk about and learn stuff about an industry you at least have a vested interest in or even actually interested in. Many PR pros, though, are doing public relations for other businesses or even multiple companies. This means they learn all sorts of stuff they never knew before.
When a friend first started in PR, she had no idea things like taxes, the banking industry, and new technology would be stuff she would care about. There was previously no interest from her and it definitely wouldn’t have been her choice had she had one. However, good PR pros know you have to do the work you’re handed, and you learn to love whatever subject comes up.
The Hours are Ridiculous
Sure, you may have some idea of how many hours PR pros work. After all, the job never “stops” exactly; you just go to sleep hoping the phone doesn’t ring or ding with a bunch of emails or texts. At any moment a huge crisis could hit and you’re back on the clock.
But you probably think this doesn’t count for holidays. You get Christmas and Arbor Day off, right? Those are your two favorite holidays and you really want to take them off to be with your family. Well, count Arbor Day out, though you may get Christmas Day off…at least to eat dinner and open presents, but the annual sleigh ride might have to take a backseat when your client’s CEO mouths off to a reporter.
Your Clients Probably Know Next to Nothing
First of all, I don’t want to imply that your clients are dumb. They opened a business and got it running well enough that they need promotion and representation online and around the community. However, you’re going to be surprised just how little they know when it comes to most things PR.
Social media is the worst offender, as for many business owners (especially the older crowd) it’s an enigma wrapped in a mystery. They don’t know HOW it works, nor do many of them want to know – they just know it DOES work, and they want you to figure it out for them.
So be prepared to walk your clients through some of the most basic ideas you learned in school or on the first day of the job. Sometimes it can be annoying when they question everything you do or say something ridiculous, but often it can make you seem like a superhero when you pull off what looks to them like magic!
What aspects of working in PR do you find yourself explaining over and over again to non-PR people?
This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (http://www.ereleases.com), the online leader in affordable press release distribution. Download your free copy of 8 Shocking Secrets Press Release Distribution Firms Don’t Want You to Know here: http://www.ereleases.com/offer/8shockingsecrets.html