We have a guest blogger today in the guise of Andrew Peacock, who is doing some work experience with the team at GREEN. Here are his views on life in the world of public relations. Over to you Andrew:
Just under a year ago a chapter in my life ended. The exit of Manchester University opened wide and after an elaborate graduation I was unceremoniously kicked into the real world. The economy was (as it still is) in a poor state and with a 2.2 degree the prospects of instant employment ebbed away. After a short stint on the dole, I had an epiphany and realized a good use of my time would be to experience the public relations industry and see whether I was any good at what I’d pictured making a career out of.
The picture though, as is usually the case, was very distant to the reality. After a placement at a PR company in London I was fortunate to be taken in by Green Communications and it is from there that I write this blog entry.
Public relations then, how hard can it be?
Public relations, as it turns out, is pretty tough indeed. I discovered that almost any individual not in the world of PR usually writes for an uninformed clone of themselves. They write in a way which might not be receptive to anyone other than themselves. Public relations does not allow for that! Although far from competent on the issue of press releases, I have learnt that the way to a publication’s heart is to make it scream “READ ME”.
There is a craft to writing something to attract a journalist’s attention and although I am sure one can read about the issue whilst at university, work experience is the best way to learn about almost any industry.
The masters of this particular PR forge have shown me, in great detail, how to craft a press release, which questions to ask prospective clients and most importantly that persistence is key to integrating clients into the media machine.
In an advisory capacity I would have to say that internships are well worth their time and that young people should avoid the mindset I almost fell into which is: “Oh god I’m now a graduate, I MUST get onto a grad scheme ASAP!”
It is certainly wiser in the long term to build up experience in an industry you are interested in than to dive blindly into a paid capacity within an industry you are not.