By Julia Cardillo, Intern
It’s no secret that working in public relations can get a little hectic. Some days the phone is constantly ringing, the coffee is endlessly flowing and the ever-growing pile of clipping begins to resemble a life-size replica of Mount Kilimanjaro. Other days, however, take a slower approach, providing an open afternoon to dig into a blog post or draft a new strategy. While there’s no way to predict exactly what the day may bring, (although that email timestamped at 5 a.m. might give you a slight indication,) in PR no two days are the same.
A PR professional can be tasked with a variety of assignments, ranging from customer service to crisis management. Mornings usually begin a delicate balancing act between phone calls, emails, meetings and writing, assuring all clients’ needs are addressed and deadlines are met. While this lifestyle tends to lend itself to stacked to-do lists and busy calendars, a PR professional is ready to take on an assignment at a moment’s notice. Just one news story can change the entire course of the day, providing time-sensitive opportunities for pitches, or even requiring crisis management. Thankfully, not every day will bring a groundbreaking development or major crisis, however that doesn’t let the work day get stale. In fact, working in PR is anything but boring.
With so much going on in the office, each day brings a new project, a different client and potentially even a different industry sector. In an agency setting, employees can manage social media for large consumer electronic clients, then turn the page to draft a pitch about the latest minimally-invasive medical procedure, all while keeping up with the Wall Street Journal for the latest commercial real estate deals. While R&J breaks up our expertise into two different teams, business-to-business and business-to-consumer, agency life provides an opportunity to learn and explore a variety of skills from a multitude of clients, industries and co-workers.
On either team, daily tasks can include anything from drafting press releases, pitching stories, creating and maintaining relationships with journalists, compiling reports and developing strategy. At agencies that have adopted modern digital capabilities, such as R&J, these duties can extend to drafting and maintaining social media campaigns, blog writing, email marketing and even dip into online advertising. Go one step further beyond the roles of traditional PR, and a whole world of branding, web design and graphic design is uncovered. While an account executive probably won’t be charged with coding HTML while pitching a story, the entire client team, equipped with an in-house web designer, will work together to ensure the client’s brand is communicated cohesively across all platforms. Thanks to regular collaboration between traditional, digital and creative teams, each member of the agency becomes fluent in a variety of technologies and strategies to ensure each piece of the marketing puzzle correctly fits together.
With so many hats to wear throughout the day, each member of the team serves as much more than just an employee at R&J. Our business cards may only provide one job title, but we are much more than just presidents, executives or interns. We are strategists, communicators, designers, creators and storytellers. We walk into work every day with the opportunity to make a difference for our clients, and frankly, we think that hat fits best.