What exactly is PR? This is a question that we often get asked, whether that’s from friends or family as we try to explain what our job is, or even from students and young people during networking events. It’s a good question but one that can be tricky to answer, as PR involves a number of different jobs!

This month, we were invited to attend two different careers events aimed at offering an insight into PR to students. Looking at career options can be a daunting process, and for many students it can be hard to know where to start. To shed some light on what a career in PR entails, Account Executive Hollie represented BRPR at the two events…

‘Careers in Writing’: Royal Holloway Alumni Panel

Hollie was invited to take part in an alumni panel at her old university Royal Holloway University of London, which was aimed at current students looking for writing-focussed careers. The evening began with each panel member speaking about their career, what it involves, and how they ended up in the role that they are in. Afterwards, students were given the opportunity to ask panel members varying questions – everything from tips to get into the industry to what’s the best part of the job!

Careers in Construction Q&A, organised by Construction Youth Trust

We have worked closely with Construction Youth Trust (CYT) previously, organising activities on behalf of our client Barratt David Wilson Kent. CYT led a Q&A session at St John’s Catholic College in Gravesend, Kent, where 10 volunteers from varying aspects of the construction/property industry offered an insight into their career. Aimed at Year 10-12 students, the event was structured in a ‘speed-dating’ style, where the volunteers had 10 minutes to speak to a group of 6-8 students about their job. Once the time was up, the volunteers moved round to the next group of students. Afterwards, students were able to approach those working in a career they were interested in.

Here are some of the questions that Hollie was asked, and the answers she gave…

Q. What does a typical day look like?

A. Every day is different, which is why I enjoy working in PR. We start each day by checking for coverage for our clients, and reading the newspapers to stay up-to-date with the property news. Daily tasks vary, but can include writing press releases, organising events, selling in or pitching features to journalists, managing social media content.

Q. What is your favourite part of the job?

A. I love getting coverage for clients, especially in the national newspapers – it’s so rewarding opening the paper and seeing an article that you’ve sent something in for.

Q. What is it really like working in PR?

A. Working in PR is exciting, and I like the variation in job roles. It isn’t entirely office based either, as I get to go to events, ranging from local community events to higher profile events in the property industry. Although sometimes the job can be stressful when there are tight deadlines, the end result of coverage is always rewarding, which makes it worthwhile.

Q. As a recent graduate, what are your top tips for getting into the industry?

A. Try to get as much writing experience as possible, whether this is writing for student newspapers or blogs, or work experience in PR agencies. I got into the industry by working part time at BRPR while I was in my final year at university, and this was a great way to gain relevant paid experience and ultimately secure a graduate job.

Q. What advice would you give to someone going for an interview at a PR agency?

A. Research the agency and their clients beforehand, and make sure you understand what they do. Think about why you want to go into PR and make sure to get this across in the interview.