Category Archives: How to

How to pitch

So much of a public relations practitioner’s life revolves around pitching to the media. Some may argue that it’s the main reason it as a profession exists- to bridge the gap between a product, service, company, etc., and the public through the most viable channel: media.

In this video, David Pogue, New York Times technology columnist, explains the most effective way to pitch him and in most cases other journalists. His thought is that so much of the time us in PR feel like we have to wow a journalist with buzz words and long detailed paragraphs. Instead, a couple of sentences with the basics of what you’re coming to them with and why it’s appropriate for that journalist’s audience will suffice.

But enough paraphrasing from me. I’ll let David Pogue speak for himself.

http://www.ragan.com/Main/Video/1495.aspx

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Cool Tool

As I was cleaning out my inbox I saw a link to this really neat job searching tool called Twitjobsearch that compiles job opportunities from twitter based on key search terms. What appears to be so beneficial to me about this particular service compared to the other countless  services out there is the immediacy of the post, if you’re able to monitor the feed often. The old adage: “the early bird gets the worm” may be even more true as it pertain to looking for a job.

In the same line of thinking. Google Alerts are super helpful if your looking for a job. Put in those key phrases, including the company, if you have a list of companies you’d love to work for, and let Google do the work for you.

Take advantage of these tools that people aren’t either privy to, or haven’t taken advantage of.

Happy job hunting and Happy Martin Luther King Day… Keep Dreaming!


Put Twitter to the test

Happy New Year! 2011 has already been an exciting year for me. As I mentioned earlier I got recruited by internships.com to be one of its Eye of the Intern blogger. Every month, along with eight other bloggers, we’ll provide our insight into todays intern market. Also, if you’re looking for an internship, create a profile and check out the different opportunities.

Twitter is a great and revolutionary social media tool. It has completely altered the way that consumers and businesses engage, and that’s barely scratching the surface of it’s use or potential. For those of you who are looking to add some meat to your network I would strongly encourage you to check out the different chats that take place on it.

Here are just a few of the ones that happen on a weekly basis.

#journchat- Monday at 7-10 p.m. CST

#pr20chat- Tuesday at 8 p.m. EST

#prstudchat

#happo chat

These are the ones I usually take part in, as it works with my schedule. It’s a great place to observe, but an every better place to participate in the latest trends and who know… you may even land an internship, job or connection that could benefit you in the future.


Personal Branding

Here’s a link to a great Q&A article about personal branding and how that WILL give you an advantage going into 2011 where most recruiters are using that google search like a “drug test.” Dan Schawbel: Confidence For Jobs In 2011.


Manic Monday

Yesterday was crazy and wonderful all in one. I was blessed to have three interviews in three different PR sectors: corporate, boutique agency and non profit, back-to-back-to-back.

My first interview was with Turner PR, as I mentioned I would interviewing with. I must say I was bit nervous walking in, comparable to meeting a celebrity. I’m not even sure why, I don’t get nervous usually, plus being that it was an unpaid internship that I was being interviewed for, there shouldn’t have been much pressure. Don’t get me wrong, it would be wonderful to get employed there, but somehow when it’s full-time paid position the stakes are higher, especially as a recent graduate.

It was a good interview as interviews go. Oddly enough though, the questions they asked me weren’t experience focus. It was more of a description of the internship program and what I would be doing. Either way, whatever comes from this, I hope that I’ve made some contacts that I can add to my network.

(HELPFUL TIP) Should you not get the job/ decide for whatever reason it’s not meant for you, follow up with an email, asking them if it would ok to keep in touch and follow up with them at a later date. Assuming they agree (99% success rate) add them to you LinkedIn network.

My second interview was the Big Kahuna! Weber Shandwick, which is a company whose results speak from itself. This interview was for AE position in their technology and healthcare sector. The woman who I interviewed with was just as nice as you can be. She’s been with the company for 16 years and her zeal for her clients and Weber Shandwick in general was evident.

The interview went well. Usually most out-of-college YoPRo’s aren’t slated for AE positions, but she was impressed with what I had accomplished in during my time in college and the fact that I was teachable and willing to work hard.

(HELPFUL TIP) Sometimes you can be the most qualified person in the world, but if you aren’t willing to learn and be teachable, you often won’t make the cut. Sure, most supervisors don’t want to hold your hand, and expect you to learn quick, but especially with a new working environment, there are things to learn. Next time you’re in an interview make sure to mention that you may lack experience in a certain area i.e., media pitching, but you learn quick and are very teachable. Employers eat that up!

My final interview of the day was with the Alzheimers Association. I met this woman through a PRSA event, through a person in my network. It to is an unpaid internship position, as most non-profits are, but promised a lot of hands-on experience. That’s really the beauty of the non-profit world, they need they help and because of that you’re able to work on different things that maybe an agency wouldn’t let you work on.

I actually wouldn’t call this an interview, it was more of a ‘where are you in your career’ talk, and how can I help you. It’s so rare, to hear those words. Because I don’t live in the heart of Denver, she agreed to let me work virtually from home, which is something that I can totally do. The AA has a large press conference that their organizing with the Governor of Colorado that I’ll be able to help with as well as their annual Polar Plunge, at the Boulder Reservoir. Fun projects that will allow me to work on the gamut of skills necessary in the PR industry.

(HELPFUL TIP) A lot of student complain about the lack of internships available. Well try this on for size. Volunteer your services for a non-profit. My first internship was with a transitional house in my college town. I did a PR plan for them for their upcoming summer fundraiser. It’s a great way to implement the tools you’ve learned in the classroom. Find a NP that interest you and give them a call, say you’re a PR student looking to gain some experience, would it be possible to come in and talk with them. Simple.

Now it’s the waiting game (my favorite!). Even if none of these transpire into actual employment, it’s still rewarding to get some interview practice and realize that I’m worth a look at.


“Why Asking for a Job is the Worst Way to Actually Find a Job”

Last night I participated in a HAPPO’s (Help A PR Pro Out) Twitter chat. The format was a simple Q & A between current public relations students, recent graduates and “champs” or PR pros who have been in the business for a while. The last question of the night asked the champs to offer links to potential jobs. To paint a scene of what happen next, do you remember the scene in The 10 Commandments where Moses and his people cross the Red Sea, and then when the Pharisees’ army tries to do the same, the ocean collapses on them? Well that’s what it was like, YoPRo after YoPRo tweeted “hire me” faster then my TweetDeck column could keep up with.

I’m happy to report that I wasn’t one of those YoPRo’s. In fact, my tact earned me a new contact (rhyme not intended). Anne Buchanan, president of Philadelphia’s Buchanan Public Relations, also took notice of how many emerging public relations practitioners were going about getting a job the wrong way. She recently just posted a blog entry entitled, “Why Asking for a Job is the Worst Way to Actually Find a Job.” I encourage people to read up on her tips to set yourself up for success. Hint: It’s a little thing called networking.