After a semester of never-wracking resume updates, cover letter customizations, and anxious phone interviews, you’ve landed your dream internship.
Now comes the tricky part—starting the job. There is a lot to learn about working in public relations, so, as an inside look for a new intern or entry-level hire, here are a few questions I had to ask over the course of my internship:
Business-to-business is different than business-to-consumer—but what does that mean for an intern?
Through working with clients across both the financial and professional service spheres, I’ve learned how important ideas
can be. Because you aren’t given a tangible product to pitch to a reporter, gaining coverage is ultimately going to come down to how well you can frame your client’s thought leadership and communicate that to a reporter.
How much have networks like LinkedIn and Twitter affected traditional PR?
Public relations is a constantly changing field, and the people who succeed are those who are excited to embrace new iterations of what it means to be in the industry. If you don’t have a Twitter profile, make one right now and start following people and sites you find interesting and engaging. If you don’t have a LinkedIn profile, upload your resume as soon as possible, and reach out to people you’ve met through previous experiences. You will
have to use these networks, and many others, every day, and the more experience you have on them the better.
Do you really need to read The Wall Street Journal every day?
It’s tempting to get by on just skimming the “most-read” articles on the New York Times
website, but in PR you’re expected to know the ins and outs of every news story that could affect one of your clients. Find newspapers, blogs, and Twitter feeds that you think are generating truly interesting content that relates to your interests and experiences, and stay up-to-date on their stories.
If you’re a soon-to-be intern or new hire at a PR firm, what questions would you add to this list? PR pros, have I completely missed a lesson that you wish your interns would learn?
Follow Shannon Rice on Twitter at @rice_shannon.