Tips to Get a Job at a PR Agency

How can one land a job at a PR firm is an oft-asked question. In a tiny industry where perhaps 100 US Public Relations agencies have more than 20 employees its one which deserves more attention.  Considering statistics which show that annual spending on public relations services in the U.S. will increase 55 per cent between 2008 and 2013, to $8 billion there should be many PR jobs available in the years to come. Here are some tips to land a PR Career:

     –PR Internships and relevant experience matter.  Its very rare for one to be able to get hired for a Public Relations job without relevant experience – regardless of your education, spend the time getting actual working experience in the Public Relations field. Are you involved with local PR organisations? Get an internship which are valuable stepping stones – and entrée points to the PR agency world.

     –Know the industry. Understand the difference skills required to succeed working for a beauty PR firm instead of an in-house beauty communications role, and tailor your answers accordingly during the interview.  Know the specifics of the type of agency you are interviewing for – is it a boutique which may require different skills than a multi-national conglomerate? Come equipped with answers.

     –Be visible online and contribute.  We are googling you – Have professional Linkedin, Facebook and other digital media accounts. We recently hired a candidate we wouldn’t have otherwise hired had it not been for their 700 followers on twitter – it was different and made the candidate standout.  Consider blogging on issues that interest you – whether media, marketing or something you learned. Potential employers will appreciate and consider it.

     –Bring work samples to you on your interview – Have you secured media placements? Created marketing programs? Written outstanding op-eds? Bring them with you on your interview.

In addition to job site boards, the industry is small enough to visit individual PR firm websites and review jobs directly – our agency for example lists PR jobs and PR Careers on our site, and many others do as well.  Be creative and don’t be shy. Best of luck job hunting the world of PR is fun and exciting.

Ronn Torossian is CEO of 5WPR, a premier NY PR Agency.