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PR Majors

Back to School: 10 Tips for PR Majors

Class is back in session and you have finally decided that PR is your calling. Here are ten tips for public relations majors that will get you the grades and the job.

Define your morning (or late-night) reads

Create time in your schedule, between classes, work and homework to read PR and marketing news and tips available on sites like PR Daily, PRWeek (most articles are paid, but some are free), Social Media Explorer, and Mashable. These are all great sources to learn about how current events are impacting in the industry as well companies to keep on your radar. If you are interested in fashion PR, make sure to add PR Couture, (of course), Women's Wear Daily, WWD, The High Low, Fashionista and FMM to that list.

Get organized, your way

The new semester is the perfect time to develop time management skills that will support you in your career. If you prefer digital, start using Google Calender and list your classes, PRSSA meetings, and coffee dates with friends there. If you need to scribble down your to-dos, invest in a pretty planner that will make you want to stay organized and on schedule.

Be smart about social media

Use these last days of summer to clean up your social media profiles. While friends are nonchalantly posting embarrassing photos and letting the world know the results of five vodka-cranberries, you will have a realistic yet professional profile that is appropriate for the web. Communicate the results of school projects, networking events and internships. This is the perfect time to set-up a LinkedIn profile as well.

Take a break and #chat

When you need a diversion from homework, join a Google+ hangout for some online networking. If you're into Fashion PR, find blogger, stylist or magazine chats to join. Or, make use of the many relevant Twitter chats that take place each week. #PRStudChat is a great way to talk about relevant issues, demonstrate your acumen and network with others, but there are a ton's more. Check out this PR Twitter chat list from Cision.

Visit during office hours

Take time to meet with your professors outside of class. Let them know that your interest in public relations goes beyond the classroom. When possible, do independent study projects that allow you to work one-on-one with a profession and explore issues, brands and strategies that light you up. Networking  professors means they will be more likely to refer you for internships and jobs upon graduation.

Join PRSSA

Your classmates will be your future connections outside of the classroom. Take advantage of professional associations (and reduced fees for students), clubs and other associations to get access to industry leaders. The Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) and its annual conference are a total must for the PR major.

Intern intern intern

Leave no stone unturned when it comes to finding PR internships. Intern a lot, and intern well. Internships can lead to jobs and major connections. Make the most of any internship, learn all you can, and get involved in any task your boss will allow. If you don't attend school in a place where there are a wealth of internship opportunities available for PR students, pitch yourself to an agency as a virtual intern!

For a ton of inspiring stories of interns, check out our Getting IN series

Build media awareness

Familiarize yourself with bloggers, editors and magazine feature writers. Nothing is more impressive in an interview than knowing the name of a journalist. Plus, the most you know about these people ahead of time, the better prepped you will be when it is time to pitch!

Start a blog

Start a blog on a particular topic of interest to perfect your writing skills, connect with other bloggers, learn blogging platforms and build your social media following. Be realistic with your commitment to your blog and be consistent, like choosing to post 2 or 3 times per week. A blog is a great source for potential employers to see your writing style and interests.

Learn software

Technology is your friend. Get a leg up on the competition by adding some valuable programs to your resume.  Learn the basics of Photoshop and Illustrator by downloading a free 30-day trial, buying a book or taking a class.  Get up to date on Cloud programs such as Google Docs, Dropbox, Ge.tt, play around in  Mailchimp to learn how to create e-newsletters and releases, and up your social strategy by learning social network management platforms such as HootSuite.

Have a great year and remember, if you're interested in a career in Fashion PR check out Ready to Launch: The PR Couture Guide to Breaking into Fashion PR, now available on Amazon!

Photo Credit: Sewanee: The University of the South

About the author: Danika


Danika Daly is the founder of Danika Daly PR, a boutique PR firm in New York City specializing in contemporary fashion and beauty brands. Danika does everything in a bright, bold fashion, with creative flair and no trace of the ordinary. Danika coaches many brands and aspiring publicists, and has a love for sharing knowledge. She has done so as a writer for various sites such as PR Couture, Fashion Indie, and The Fabulous Report.

10 Comments

  • Posted August 28, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

    Hi Danika & Crosby!

    Just wanted to drop in and let you know a few things: 1) your tips are a great guide for students, especially in our ever-changing digital world. 2) We like them so much we shared with our followers. 3) WE LOVE TWITTER #CHATS (can you tell?) :) We’ve participated in #PRStudChat & #PR20Chat and hope to fill our schedule with many more. We hope to see you there!

    Have a great afternoon!
    Best,
    Lisa
    @cision

    PS. We compiled a #chat list a few weeks ago if you want to see the #PR & #Marketing ones out there (feel free to let us know if we missed some!). http://bit.ly/R4sJQp Talk soon :)

    • Posted August 31, 2012 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

      Thanks Lisa!

      We’ve updated the post to include your link!

  • Posted August 28, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

    Hi Danika & Crosby!

    Just wanted to drop in and let you know a few things: 1) your tips are a great guide for students, especially in our ever-changing digital world. 2) We like them so much we shared with our followers. 3) WE LOVE TWITTER #CHATS (can you tell?) :) We’ve participated in #PRStudChat & #PR20Chat and hope to fill our schedule with many more. We hope to see you there!

    Have a great afternoon!
    Best,
    Lisa
    @cision

    PS. We compiled a #chat list a few weeks ago if you want to see the #PR & #Marketing ones out there (feel free to let us know if we missed some!). http://bit.ly/R4sJQp Talk soon :)

  • Felicia
    Posted September 5, 2012 at 11:32 am | Permalink

    Just to be clear, it is a good idea to study PR in school in order to break into a career in Fashion PR?

    Is your book available anywhere else?

    • Posted September 5, 2012 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

      Hi Felicia – Majoring in public relations is a great choice, particularly when you supplement your education with internships working on fashion brands. Ready to Launch is available on Amazon, Kindle and directly from CreateSpace. I hope that helps! – Crosby

  • Felicia
    Posted September 5, 2012 at 11:32 am | Permalink

    Just to be clear, it is a good idea to study PR in school in order to break into a career in Fashion PR?

    Is your book available anywhere else?

    • Posted September 5, 2012 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

      Hi Felicia – Majoring in public relations is a great choice, particularly when you supplement your education with internships working on fashion brands. Ready to Launch is available on Amazon, Kindle and directly from CreateSpace. I hope that helps! – Crosby

  • Posted September 11, 2012 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    Hello Danika & Crosby!

    Thank you so much for including a link to our #chat list! We hope to see you at some of events ;) Congrats on having this posted on PR Daily, too! Hope you’re having a good day.

    Best,
    Lisa
    @cision

  • Posted September 11, 2012 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    Hello Danika & Crosby!

    Thank you so much for including a link to our #chat list! We hope to see you at some of events ;) Congrats on having this posted on PR Daily, too! Hope you’re having a good day.

    Best,
    Lisa
    @cision

  • Shruti
    Posted February 5, 2014 at 12:20 am | Permalink

    Hi i from India, i am in the last year of my under graduation in Mass Communication. I am very keen on pursuing a post graduation in Fashion PR. I want to know if i would be eligible since my bachelors does not have a fashion course. And could you advice me good colleges to pursue a PG in Fashion PR because i haven’t found any useful information on the internet.

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Meet Crosby Noricks

Hi. I'm Crosby, the founder of PR Couture and a fashion brand strategist. I care about supporting and celebrating fashion publicists as well as helping rad companies connect with their audiences in more meaningful ways. Recently, iMedia included me in their annual list of 25 Internet Marketing Leaders and Innovators, along with people from Starbucks, Twitter and Volkswagon, which I think is pretty neat. Like Elle Woods, I am a Gemini-vegetarian (that's about where the similarities end). Let's connect: Check out my full bio, Brand Elixer sessions or shoot me an electronic communiqué.