Pre – Reflections: What is PR?

Public Relations seems complex. The constant need to check all forms of social media, blogs, news reports, and also manage relationships within the community and a company seems overwhelming to say the least. The overall meaning of public relations in my eyes today is the main source of communication from a company directly to the companies employees and the management of a companies relationships with it’s consumers.

My degree in Advertising and Public Relations has more of an emphasis on advertising but I know I will be working with public relations on a regular basis. My goal is to work in a larger company (such as Spectrum Health, Disney, etc.) and work with their marketing hands on. I would love to create and manage the things that inform people of the company and make them want to choose that company over the competition.

Public Relations seems to have many different angles to look at it. It isn’t just writing for the media, it is also defending the company, putting a positive outlook in the eyes of the community and creating that relationship so they have loyalty to the company. On top of managing the community, the public relations representatives have to manage employee relationships as well work with the marketing department to create an overall marketing plan for the company.

I’m not sure how most people start in Public Relations. The reason I decided on this degree was more of a process of elimination and a desire to ditch the degree I was originally pursing for something that was more open-minded and not as “to the books” based. I know this career has been developing further and further in the last 10 years and my guess would be that it evolved into a necessary position as technology progressed.

Again, an uncertainty for me after listening to some people in the field is why someone would choose to live with their faces glued to their screens as a job requirement. It must get irritating sometimes to not have a break from everything going on. But at the same time, it must be rewarding knowing you are the first impression for people in the community and the go-to for updated information on current events.

The research aspect of PR seems to be the most overwhelming part of PR though. There is a need to be accurate and verify all sources before it is published and there are so many opportunities to be wrong. It seems as though I know we will be learning a significant amount about that though in the process of writing our final campaign.

Overall, I’m excited to start looking more deeply into the Public Relations side of things but I am also very anxious and evenly slightly nervous to find out exactly what I will be doing once I am out of school and exploring the field on a daily basis. I think this will give me real life insight and some of the experience I need to get started. I’m also looking forward to breaking the ice and jumping in to get rid of some of my nerves about PR.

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