The Public Relations Triple Threat: Advice from Luxury PR Firm in New York On How To “Wow” Your Boss, Your Clients, Even Yourself.
In New York City, finding a job in public relations is nearly impossible but with this economy, not only the unemployed should be worried. As an Account Executive at one of NYC’s top boutique luxury public relations firms, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to compete in this industry and I know that keeping your job has been harder than ever. With looming downsizing and the struggles to make ends meet, means that now, more than ever it’s imperative that you show your boss why you’re the most valuable asset that your company, could ever have.
In this dog eat dog field of NYC PR firms there are a numerous amount of job applicants in the mix. Regardless of whether you are trying to break into the travel public relations, beauty public relations, fashion public relations, or lifestyle public relations industries- you’ve got a lot of competition. There are applicants who majored in PR, those who didn’t, those who are looking for a new career, those who are just looking around and those who will do it for free and with all this competition it may be hard to justify what makes you important and why no one can do the job you do. Among all of the skills you need to have as a public relations professional, to be a true PR guru there are three skill that you must master. You must be the PR Triple Threat.
The PR Triple Threat is something to behold and strive for. Calm, cool, and collected in the face of a crisis, able to charm anyone over the phone, land any story via e-mail, and can interact with the largest audience in social media. This person will make the finest mentor for the PR newbie but the worst enemy of someone who can’t keep up. The PR Triple Threat will have to conquer old media, new media, and everything in between.
- Traditional Media: Regardless of the day and age, pitching will always be an integral portion of the day for any PR pro. Although pitches and press releases have been distributed via e-mail for quite some time, it’s still considered one of the more traditional portions of PR. To master the traditional media you not only have to send out original, brief, creative and targeted pitches but you also have to be able to follow up with a phone call to clarify any details and confirm the story. When it comes time to prove to your boss how effective and efficient your media campaign was, go through your original list and see how many placements you received and the total impressions (use free service www.Compete.com to keep overhead down when looking for impressions of online hits, and call the advertising office for circulation and viewership numbers of magazines, newspapers and TV/radio shows should a service like Vocus or Cision not be available to you.) A few tips to master traditional media:
- Know Your Target (No General, Mass E-mails). If you’re writing a pitch about a bridal registry, you wouldn’t send it to Guns & Ammo Magazine would you? If you said no, you’re headed in the right direction. Make sure every e-mail you send is relevant to the target publication and editors.
- Build Relationships. By establishing relationships with key editors, you’ll be able to land stories with ease. By knowing the angles and topics that would interest them, you cut down a lot of post pitch time trying to tailor the story just for them. Also, if they know and recognize your name and e-mail, they’re much more likely to actually answer your e-mail instead of banishing it to the spam folder along with the other hoards of e-mails they receive every day.
- New Media: It’s 2010 and there is no such public relations/marketing campaign that doesn’t involve social media. Not only is social media a huge portion of any campaign, you really should adopt it into your lifestyle. By using Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Foursquare, WordPress, etc, you are able to maximize your outreach with much more targeted and personalized messages. These outlets allow you to learn more about your target market and allows your target market to learn a lot more about you.
- Converse, Don’t Preach. The number one thing to avoid on social media is to sound too pitch-y. You don’t want to turn people away, you’re there to participate in a conversation not flood them with information they may not care about.
- Out of the Box: This is where you can really impress your client and/or PR firm‘s boss. Although traditional and new media are imperative to any campaign, it’s the overall creativity that goes into it that is really the “it” factor. By using creative techniques you’ll be able to make the most of your budget and yours and your client’s potential. It may take more brain power and in some cases more man power to pull off but it is worth it. The whole point of PR is to get your client to stick out and what better way to do that than to create the most appealing and eye catching campaign. Added bonus: Not only will your client stick out, but you will too!
Once you’ve mastered these three career necessities you’ll be able to take the PR world by storm. No one will be able to compete with you and your boss will thanking his lucky stars or HR people for hiring you and keeping you on staff even through the difficult times and budget cuts. Who knows, maybe even a promotion will be waiting for you on the other side of the rainbow.
L.E.R. Public Relations is a boutique PR firm / agency in New York’s Soho area. The agency offers PR & marketing services for luxury lifestyle, fashion, beauty, travel, hospitality & entertainment clients. Services include media relations, event production, marketing, social media & branding. For more info on our clients and expertise please visit http://lerpr.com.
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