A lot of people have asked me how I managed to rack up so much experience in the PR industry. So I thought I would write a “straight to the point” blogpost about it. I hope the tips I have below prove to be useful!
1) Networks – Being part of the Taylor Bennett Foundation alumni has opened me up to many networks. Jobs and internships has been sent exclusively to the trainees and alumnis which has helped. Joining a PR group on linkedin for example could be a way of you making your own networks in the industry. Also, people who I have had interviews with have referred me to other agencies where they feel I may be more compatible, which leads me to my next point…
2) Keep in touch with people you have met throughout your job search. Doing this through Linkedin is the easiest. You may not have gotten the job but they may prove to be incredibly helpful when it comes to advancing your career.
2) To stand out, I made a visual Cover letter using prezi. Recruiters and potential employers are usually impressed with this because it shows creativity, passion and initiative. Create something unique enough to grab their attention.
3) I used social media to search for jobs that may have not been posted on Indeed for example. I used keywords such as #Prjobs, pr intern, pr internship etc to find people and agencies who are looking for interns via their twitter. This way, there’s less competition for those positions as opposed to those posted on Indeed. I also search through Linkedin using specific keywords.
4) Although speculative applications have worked the best for me, I never sent it to the typical jobs email address (e.g. firstname.lastname@example.org). I usually found an employee from an agency or company of interest that is around mid management level through linkedin, work out their email and personalise my cover letter and CV directly to them.
6) Sometimes all you need is a bit of luck. The more time you dedicate to your job search, the more likely that luck will be on your side.
Finding an internship can be hard but keep at it, don’t give up and you’re sure to be rewarded with worthwhile experience. Good luck! 🙂
Recently, whilst applying for a popular PR graduate scheme, I came across the following question:
Please write a blog that delivers maximum impact on: “If you were leader of the Opposition how would you make the case to win the next election? (In no more than 200 words)
In all honesty, I had no idea how to answer. My initial reaction was to write a funny piece but I fretted over whether this would be appropriate for the culture and style of this particular PR company. I was not sure if they wanted a serious answer or they wanted my personal take on the question. I even took the time to search through several blogs on the right ways to tackle this perceived problem, although they all gave me conflicting answers. After much research, reflection and thought, I decided to take a risk and write a totally unconventional and slightly weird answer. I wrote:
First, I would offer the masses free popcorn at anytime and anyplace during my tenure in power. According to a focus group consisting of two people (a very legible amount), popcorn is likely to be a deciding factor when swaying the public in an election. A last ditch effort, this would only occur after my political advisers and I have tried and tested every rational communication strategy possible. Through this action, I am showing the public that I’m fun, unique and likely to bring a different approach in government unlike my boring and less creative opponent.
If in the unlikely chance that ‘Operation Popcorn’ does not bode well with the people, then I will do what I think Gordon Brown should have done and study presentations and speeches led by great speakers such as Barack Obama and Steve Jobs. I would possibly hope that their charismatic aura robs off on me, so I can then sway the election to my favour with my newly acquired supercharged charm.
I know you must be thinking it’s strange, right?
They did not ask the applicant to write a serious piece so I decided to take a chance. Although I can write in different tones and styles, this particular way of writing comes natural to me and I concluded that it’s probably a great way to showcase my personality to the employers. In the PR industry, writing is deemed one of the most important skills needed and I resolved that as long as they can see that you’re a great writer and you’re not using any obscene language, then you are within the means and rights to write in any style you like without it hindering your application progress.