I’ve not used my education in PR a ton, but it did help me understand human nature to some degree. If you’d like to be successful in PR, you must have a grasp on human nature. PR is basically your free advertising. You write press releases, cold call people, conduct surveys, and so on. You get a pulse on the general public. Which you either understand or you don’t. Generally when peoples’ only interaction with the public is through college, and straight to work, they’re a little lost.
Those who’ve worked in a service industry with the actual general public, have a far better grasp on human nature.
A. If you’re calling people, be personable. Don’t read a script. If you aren’t comfortable talking to everyone like your long lost best friend, don’t call.
B. On direct mail, handwriting is best. If you can produce a font that literally appears to be handwriting, great, but odds are, you need to hand address and write. Yes, it’s worth it to pay people for that. A hand-addressed envelope is twice as likely to be opened than a printed label-those often go in the garbage without being opened–what a waste of money.
C. Make good media contacts and keep them. Often times, the media is looking for stories to fill print space/air time. If you can write a good story and get it to a close media contact, odds are they’ll use it.
D. Understand the concept of spin. It needs to pass as a news story. It can’t be one long advertisement. Look in the business section of a paper–those are mostly press releases (free), not written by staff
Ok. That’s all for now. Yes, I’ve considered doing my own PR thing, but I prefer to assist others with more ambition. Oh! And use a photo to get people’s attention–especially if your text is a little dry. 🙂