The Basics of Public Relations

Public Relations, know to most simply as PR, is becoming more and more popular. Technology has advanced with new methods of communication creating numerous avenues for organizations and individuals to interact with the public. If you or your business is new to the whole PR concept, let us help you explore the basis.What is Public Relations?Public Relations is defined as “an activity aimed at increasing communication and understanding between an organization or individual and the public.” It is a means to help an organization and the public adapt mutually to each other.Typically, Public Relations activity is managed by a PR Firm or expert in the field. The experts use editorial outlets, magazines, newspapers, television broadcasts, special events, and newer tools like the internet and social media to convey a message and create an identity for their clients- a organization or individual.The experts in the PR Firm are able to anticipate, analyze, and interpret public opinion, attitudes, and issues. They will use their knowledge to convey messages or an identity that will leave a positive impression on the audience.How does Public Relations help a company or individual?Public Relations experts are familiar with the necessary tools to communicate with the public. They handle news releases, public service announcements, editorials, interviews, photos and videos, special events, press meetings, and public speaking opportunities.The overall goal of PR is to win favor with the general public. This could be for a product, a service, a company brand, or an individual name. PR experts use the tools mentioned above to add credibility and authority, promote a product or service, or increase awareness of a message. It is a way for an organization or individual to get the word out in an effective and widespread manner, which will in turn lead to a favorable public response.Who benefits from using a Public Relations Firm?Having knowledgeable and experienced experts in the PR field can help just about anyone. Some of the most common users of PR are large brand name companies, celebrities, or professional athletes. They need to reach the public often for announcements or to promote a product or service.Other users include businesses, trade unions, government agencies, foundations, hospitals, schools, or religious groups. How to find a Public Relations Firm?

Public Relations Jobs

In this article, I will describe the career profile of public relations jobs for you since an increasing number of people are opting for jobs in public relations.Career profileIn PR careers especially in small organizations, the PR personnel directing public relations or handling an individual’s publicity or public image, often has to deal with the job’s every single aspect which can be quite stressful and involves huge responsibility. These kinds of PR personnel have to conduct research, make planning, contact people and also prepare or supervise the preparation of materials that have to be distributed.Another job of theirs is to offer support for marketing people by handling sales promotion or advertising. In contrast, the most important public relations officer in large corporations is usually the vice president who often sits down with the other executives and develops policies and overall plans. Public relationists in PR departments are employed for researching, writing, preparing materials, responding to queries and maintaining contacts.Some other roles in public relations careers that employees have to play are contacting media people who will broadcast or print the material prepared by PR personnel of a company, drafting of press releases, arranging press meets and so on.In public relations employment, an employee has to prepare magazine articles, newspaper stories, television or radio or new media special reports and releases. Work in public relations departments means preparing,say, a press release, the subject matter of which might be description of an organization, the role it plays in its community and the kinds of positive policies it has spearheaded for employees.Just to give you an example, a press release might revolve around the description of a public issue, like the environment or energy or health and what methods and lines the organization has adopted to advance that particular issue.In public relations employment, PR personnel also have to perform the duties of crisis management.Often negative things occur, such as, due to some kind of accident or explosion, there are losses of lives or workers are injured in factories – such industrial accidents are very common. The oil spill in the Gulf of México that has caused widespread environmental damage and is being billed as an ecological disaster and which has crippled the fishing industry in 5 coastal states in southern USA is a case in point.Under such crisis circumstances, a PR specialist will act as the company’s spokesperson; deftly handle media questions or vicious media attacks; state the company’s position on how it is treating or handling the accident and maintain the company’s positive public image.Most politicians hire specialists in public relations jobs to portray poor public approval rating in positive lights.