How to Become a Public Relations Specialist

2021-10-31 by EPR Staff

If you’re considering a career in public relations, you’ve probably already thought about the skills and education that it takes. But what do hiring managers and recruiters want? What does it take to land a position as a public relations specialist? Let’s find out.

What a Public Relations Specialist Does

A public relations specialist is a person who shapes the public’s perception of a company, organization, or person. In other words, a PR specialist is responsible for making sure that other people know about a company or organization and what it does—and also for making sure that  the company’s name stays out of the press for the wrong reasons.

As a PR specialist, you are responsible for developing and implementing PR campaigns so that your company maintains a good reputation with its customers and stakeholders. You evaluate your brand’s promotional policies and goals together with its needs. To promote a company’s products and services, an expert in public relations will assess the organization’s goals, conditions, and promotional policies. These strategies will influence the public through media channels such as newspapers, magazines, and television.

A bachelor’s degree in PR or five years of related experience are the bare minimum requirements to get into public relations. You can also equip yourself with an APR certificate to increase your hiring chances. Also, you will require skills in project management and working with photo/video editing software.

How Much Does a PR Specialist Make?

The average salary for a PR specialist with five years of experience is $46,159. The lowest-paid PR specialists make around $34,000 a year, while the highest-paid make $62,000.

How to Become a Public Relations Specialist

Education

To make a stable career in this field, one must have a bachelor’s degree in public relations, communications, English, journalism, or business. By taking these programs, students can build a portfolio of work that shows their PR skills.

Training

PR employees at the entry level typically have a variety of different jobs. For example, they may maintain files of company materials, skim and collect relevant media articles, and assemble information for speeches and pamphlets. With this experience, they can advance to writing speeches, news releases, and articles or even carrying out PR programs.

Key PR Specialist Qualities

 

Interpersonal Skills

Public relations professionals interact with the media and general public frequently.  As a result, they must be approachable and friendly to ensure a strong image for their company.

Organizational Skills

You will have to manage different events happening at the same time. Therefore, you’ll need excellent organizational skills.

Problem-solving Skills

You must be smart in what you report and how you report it. That is because you will have to explain, for instance, how your company handles sensitive matters.

Speaking Skills

Since you’ll be explaining your brand’s position on various issues , you need to have excellent speaking skills.

Writing Skills

Specialists in public relations should be able to structure well-organized and understandable news releases and briefings. You should be able to understand the main points you wish to convey and put them down in a concise, crisp manner in order to capture the attention of  a preoccupied audience.