100 Days of PR
12th March 2020
After graduating from Nottingham Trent University last summer with a degree in Journalism, I immediately felt like a fish out of water. While I had spent three years working towards the ‘end goal’, I finally achieved it and like most graduates faced the daunting question of what next?
I have always known my passion lies within writing, but early on in my degree I knew Journalism wasn’t necessarily something I wanted to pursue. During my second year, I decided to apply for a PR internship at a digital marketing agency and instantly drawn into the fascinating world of PR. It became clear that the job incorporated the writing I love – and so much more.
I then opted for a PR and Communications module during my third year at University, which provided a great starting point and solidified the idea that PR was something I wanted to pursue. But I don’t think I fully understood what the job entails until I jumped in headfirst as a PR Assistant at Eden Public Relations.
It was clear from the get-go that Eden is a very close-knit team, everyone works closely together and is aware of who’s working on what. During my first week, I felt a little overwhelmed and in awe of the people around me and the fast-paced nature of the office. Questioning myself, how I’d ever be able to juggle all those accounts!
But everyone starts somewhere, and the team made me feel extremely welcome. My first couple of weeks were spent putting in the groundwork, getting to know the ins and outs of the clients and the workings behind Eden. The clients I’m working for range from a manufacturer, to a property consultancy, and funeral services, this felt quite daunting to begin with. But I was constantly reassured by the team to just soak in all the information like a sponge and with time it will click.
Alongside getting to know the clients, I spent a lot of time learning the processes behind Eden and getting to grips with several different software packages such as social media scheduling tools and email marketing platforms. Again, with patience, perseverance and several training sessions – I soon became more confident.
As well as media relations I have been working in digital PR. I began scheduling content created by someone else, and after intense training this has gradually shifted so that I have more opportunity to begin creating the content myself. This was extremely exciting, and now I am monitoring a number of client accounts across Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram. This gave me a chance to bring my own fresh ideas to the team, including being creative on Canva to create new imagery. As my confidence grew, I’m in a position where I have greater input to create multi-media content for a number of different clients.
Media relations is a key part of my role which allows me to exercise my joy for writing. What I’ve already learnt early on is that in public relations, writing newsworthy content is much more than just press releases. From news releases and blog posts, through to feature comments and thought leadership pieces, I’m starting to appreciate the different styles of writing and how they are used as part of a comprehensive communications programme. Securing my first piece of media coverage was really exciting and made me hungry to achieve more.
Something I struggled with initially was switching between different client accounts. Each client works in a different sector, which requires a different tone of voice, a different style of writing and ultimately a different way of working. For example, one minute I am writing a blog post on how to cope with bereavement, to drafting media relations around a new appointment. But that’s what I find so exciting about working in a PR agency like Eden – the old adage no two days are the same is certainly true! I am constantly switching between a number of client accounts, with a number of different roles from researching the latest industry trends to contributing to a social media strategy. It’s incredible how much you can achieve in one hundred days, and while it doesn’t seem a long time at all – the lessons I’ve learned during this time have been invaluable.
Already I’ve had so many different opportunities, and I am constantly learning and developing my skillset. If I could sum up my first 100 days in PR, it would be challenging yet highly rewarding….and fuelled by 200 degrees coffee!