So I’ve given you the necessary steps to getting an interview with your dream public relations (PR) firm/ agency in NYC but that’s just the minors. If you plan on landing the job itself, well then, welcome to the big league. Landing a job in public relations is not easy. Whether it’s fashion PR, lifestyle PR, beauty PR, travel PR or any other “hot” field you are trying to get into, you must know that a job at a top PR firm, especially in New York is not like other careers where a 4 year degree in accounting is enough to secure your own desk, computer, and land line. PR goes far beyond your education to your experience, your personality, and yes, even your personal style gets taken into account.
Now I left off with building your own brand equity but that step should never truly end. Throughout your entire career, your words and actions will be constantly dissected and with either contribute to or take away from your brand’s equity. So how do you add some positive reinforcements on the day of your big interview?
Here are the final five steps to guaranteeing your position in public relations:
Research – I know, you just graduated and you’re absolutely sick of research assignments…too bad. Get online and Google everything there is to know about the company. Learn their clients, campaigns, staff (if information is available), find out who the CEO is and how they got there, learn their mission statement, their goals, and beliefs. All of this information will help you out exponentially. By knowing what they’re about, you’ll impress your interviewer and show them that you are a capable future professional who is serious about their work.
Appearance – Before we even jump into the interview itself, plan your outfit to the last little detail. This may seem a little rudimentary but trust me; the wrong outfit will send the wrong vibes. In my opinion, it’s better to get a little dressed up than arrive dressed down unless told otherwise. Through your research, you may have been lucky enough to learn a little about the office environment so you may already know that showing up in a full suit may be overkill but a classic pair of slacks and a button down can never go wrong, feel free to spice it up a little bit with some accessories and some killer heels (leave the stripper heels at home) and you’ll be good to go!
**This all depends where you’re applying**
- Corporate/Financial PR: Full Suit
- Full Service Agency/ Boutique Firm: Classic look, add your own personal touch
- Fashion PR: They may want you to look as trendy as possible, so dare to be a fashionista and be sure to read those fashion magazines!
Creative Writing Samples – Do not go to the interview empty handed. Whether they ask for a writing sample or not, bring some along with your resume and cover letter. It will show that you’re not only prepared but proactive. By leaving examples of your writing style, you take a lot of the guess work out of the decision maker’s job. With physical proof of your verbal ability they will know whether you’re a good fit for their team/ how many workshops you may need before your share the same style as the rest of the company.
Ask *RELEVANT* Questions - You know how your mother and teachers always tell you that there is no such thing as a stupid question? On an interview there are about a million stupid questions. It’s ok to ask them about the work environment, level of micromanagement, level of team vs. solo projects, etc. but you should never ask about clients and projects that you could have and should have learned about on their website. If the information is not available then go ahead and ask but only if you’ve truly looked and could not find a thing.
-Send an e-mail the next morning/same night expressing your gratitude.
-Send a handwritten “Thank You” note expressing how happy you are that you had the opportunity to meet and look forward to working with them.
- After a week, if you’ve heard nothing, e-mail them again just to see where they’re at. PR is a very busy industry and sometimes things get pushed to the bottom shelf so send a friendly reminder asking for a rough estimate of when they hope to fill the position by. Who knows, maybe you’ll be able to get some good news!
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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