It’s the most wonderful time of the year and M and I can’t stop talking about holiday music, decorations and gifts. Below are some of our favorite PR Twitter Tips from November. Thanks to all that tweeted using #PR101.
@Thee_PR_PeaRl: Strategy includes establishing goals & objectives, formulating action & response strategies & using effective communication.
@MrsPR01: Be a sponge throughout your whole career in public relations, soaking up new knowledge and tactics whenever possible.
@GinadinPR: The questions don’t do the damage, only the answers do.
“TRUST YOUR GUT.” Words we’ve heard since we were little tikes in t-ball practice, but still ring true in becoming a successful professional in today’s world. In public relations, your sharp instincts can be your best tool whether your boss has given you a call for the next big media pitch or you need to brainstorm a new year program for a brand new client.
The best way to develop these instincts is time and experience, of course. However, There are a few things you can do to speed up the process and help your gut grow to the PR career path.
Become a sponge – My first few years in PR all I did was listen. I was still getting over being painfully shy as a teenager, so I found the most comfort in listening to my supervisor and her boss brainstorm and put together gifts and trips for editors. I soon began to read what they read and introduce myself to their editor contacts and favorite vendors. While it may feel a little weird to shut up and be the quiet one, absorbing all that is going on around you is one of the best ways to get a feel for what is “right” and what is “wrong”
Have your first big disappointment/scary moment – One of my biggest fears in starting out this job was getting on the phone and calling editors. I was afraid they would hate me, or I’d fumble over my words. Most of the time, I would get a polite decline or ask for additional information over email – nothing to be afraid of. I will NEVER forget the first time I was yelled at by a particularly snarky editor, but once it happened I realized how ridiculous it was, and changed my pitch strategy. Since then I have never been afraid to get on the phone. If you have the right intentions, there is no failing. There is only small slip ups that will help you find the stronger path to your goal
Learn the language of your gut – This took me a while to figure out. There is a difference between excitement, and honest-to-goodness true intentions and thinking. You may think Britney Spears as a spokesperson would completely rehaul the image of your household cleaning brand, but 10,000,000 Moms in middle America would tell you they don’t give a crap. Try to discern your personal passion from your instincts in the field and your background with the client. Your brain will soon learn to tell the difference, and make that PR voice stronger in the process
It’s one of the most powerful parts of an email – the subject line. It often dictates whether or not your pitch will get read. While many PR professionals often question about what to put, I’ve found that the shorter the subject line, the better.
Based on my experience, there’s one subject that gets me media responses quickly. “Hi”. No, I’m not joking. Something that shorts and sweet, followed by a one sentence email gauging the reporters interest in your pitch is often the best way to get feedback. I usually use “Hi” or “Question” when I’m emailing a quick sentence pitch. When it comes to a large product announcement, I use my discretion to make the subject line catchy, but always short.