With social media working at its peak, we are witnessing brands being made and even collapsing within minutes and hours. This dynamic and more so, unpredictable nature of social media has made it imperative for brands to be on their toes.
Public Relations play a crucial part when it comes to building and maintaining brand image and reputation. The PR experts/specialists are the go-to people who help a brand create a favorable positive image for themselves in the market, in front of all their stakeholders. The finesse of a PR expert comes from the ability to understand the fragility of brand image and yet toughen up, for it to make its place and its name.
How to become an efficient Public Relations Expert?
A Public Relations expert is no less than a magician. As mentioned earlier, they are the ones specialising in creating a favorable image of the brand in front of all necessary stakeholders.
With that being said, let us get an understanding of how in 7 steps you can make yourself a Public Relations Expert:
Ask Yourself Why?
The first and foremost question to ask yourself is WHY? Why do you want to do Public Relations and what about it piques your interest? Understanding why you would want to take up Public Relations as a career would help you understand the industry, its expectations, and its working better.
You have to ensure you gain a 360-degree understanding of the industry and what makes you interested in becoming a PR professional. Once you have achieved that insight, compare it with your personality, skillset, and how you would want your career to move forward in the PR industry.
Choose To Study Public Relations
Once you have understood why you would want to choose Public Relations as a career, the next step would be to gain the necessary knowledge about the stream. Enroll yourself in a PG Course in Public Relations or Mass Communication to acquire foundational knowledge about the industry. The programme will familiarise you with the workings of the industry, help you gain clarity, and wider your perspectives regarding your future in the industry.
Consume and Analyse Media
Almost everything in today’s time has gone digital. Hence it becomes imperative to ensure that you as a PR professional are consuming and analyzing media regularly. You are expected to be aware of all trends, news and events happening all over the world.
Media, especially today is constantly evolving. You, as a PR professional need to be on your toes to grasp and work at the speed that media is working and evolving. The more you consume media, the more you analyse it and the better you get at figuring patterns, understanding behaviours, and providing insights and solutions to uphold your brand image as and when required.
Acquire The Necessary Skillset
Apart from gaining formal knowledge about the industry, it is equally important to cultivate the necessary skills that will help you position yourself better and make you evolve into a Public Relations expert. As a PR professional, you must have the necessary skills:
- Interpersonal Skills
- Organizational Skills
- Problem-Solving Skills
- Writing and Oratory Skills
- Research and Analysis Skills
- Media Skills
- Time Management Skills
The beauty of this industry is that it allows you to have a great reign of control over yourself and your development based on how much knowledge you gain, both theoretically and practically. These are a few skills that once mastered can help you develop yourself into a successful and efficient specialist for the industry.
Network, Network, and Network
The name of the industry itself states that it concerns itself with building, nurturing and sustaining relationships with people. Networking becomes inevitable to your success in this aspect. The more people you know makes you expand your potential people who can help and who can help you.
Regardless of where people are, be it as employers, audience, or media personnel, it is your responsibility to ensure you can build a good rapport and nurture a smooth and efficient relationship with them to ensure you end up delivering accomplished and successful results.
Gain Work Experience
As mentioned earlier when it comes to the media industry, having theoretical knowledge is not enough. Your experience in a real-life setting counts as equally important if not more. To build up experience and familiarise yourself with the industry, you can intern at PR firms to gain a 360-degree view of all the competencies and perspectives from a real-life setting.
Working in the PR department can also help you understand your future fields of interest and the niche you would like to work and specialise in. This helps you streamline your interests and work towards areas that are pertaining to your skills, preferences and aptitude.
Build a PR Portfolio
Once you have started interning or working with PR agencies, you should use that time, knowledge and experience to build up your portfolio of work. The portfolio would help potential future employers to see how you have evolved and become better at the job.
The things that you can include in your portfolio are:
- Media Pitches and Placements
- Writing Samples
- Speeches and Talking Points
- Social Media Content
- Campaign Analysis
Your portfolio becomes the reflection of your work and your impact and potential as a PR expert.
In summary, the 7 steps to becoming an efficient and successful Public Relations Expert are:
- Ask Yourself Why?
- Choose To Study Public Relations
- Consume And Analyze Media
- Acquire The Necessary Skillset
- Network, Network and Network
- Gain Work Experience
- Build A PR Portfolio