During my two-week work placement at Whistle PR I have been astounded by the power that public relations can have on a business in helping to shape its image and drive awareness.
During this time, I’ve been lucky enough to get to spend time lots of time with the various account directors and managers at Whistle who have taught me valuable lessons about the public relations world. Here are the main things that I’ve learned:
Before I came in for my first day at Whistle PR, I had never written a press release before. To be completely honest, I thought it was something that was potentially no longer that important in today’s digital world where everything can be shared on social media and a simple piece of content can go viral in a matter of minutes.
However, even on my very first day I realised what a well-written press release can do for a brand and the role it can play in sparking a journalist’s interest and, ultimately, enticing them to feature a brand.
Another key learning has been just how important it is to keep on the pulse of the news agenda. I didn’t realise that most PR agencies tend to read all the different newspapers each and every morning and pick out any coverage or relevant stories for clients. As standard, the Whistle team has a rota whereby every team member reads a certain paper each day and is responsible for picking up any newsjacking opportunities for clients.
I quickly learned that this is essential if you want to add more value to your content, enabling you to find an opportunity for them to have an opinion and spark debate. It’s also useful in that, if you are following up with a journalist who is featuring a certain topic regularly you already know they might be interested in your pitch.
Equally essential, it would seem is a good contacts book. Last week I was given a task to do an in depth media list for a new client. I realised that taking the time to get to know all the relevant media for you clients, not just the publications but the different journalists, the types of stories they run, the best way to approach them and pitch an article, is the most essential thing if you want your story or campaign to grab the media attention.
And so, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time here at Whistle PR. From also learning about social media assets, attending a webinar on crisis comms and having copywriting training, it’s been a steep learning curve and offered great food for thought.
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