Experiences That Make Us Better Practitioners!
Whenever I tell people that I’m a PR girl in a boutique agency, they always associate it with either advertising or writing endless press releases. Basically, they have no clue about my chosen profession. Though we do loads of writing in a day, there is so much more to it! We are always up and about hosting media, crafting pitches, organizing events among other things – you name it, we do it!
With great power, comes great responsibility
Like other professionals such as Accountants, Architects, Lawyers and Editors, PR practitioners make mistakes from time to time. An acquaintance of mine once told me how she accidentally sent out an email to her client instead of her colleague, talking about that client. #WhatJustHappened! Let’s just say that that episode did not end well for her – yikes! Mistakes do happen but it depends on how much damage was done and how quick you are in managing the collateral damage.
Here are some ways to make sure your mistakes can serve as your best learning experiences:
Did I just hit send? Undo! Undo! Undo!
Emails here, emails there, email everywhere! On average, 40 business emails are sent out in a day according to research by The Radicati Group. Ranging from internal emails to your colleagues to external messages to your clients or the media, your emails are filled with content that needs to be clear, concise and accurate. Making sure that all details in the email are correct only means the right information is being conveyed to the correct parties. It just makes you and your company look professional and credible.
A typo or two can be ignored but it does put a big dent in the point you are trying to make and could even derail a conversation completely. No harm hitting the spell-check button or asking your colleagues to have a second look at your email for any blunders or discrepancies. #WeGotYourBack
Tip: If you have an undo button in your email setting, make sure you use it! Hitting the undo button immediately after spotting a mistake will save you the embarrassment and maybe a potential promotion down the road.
My press release is your priority
With many PR agencies in Singapore, there is never a day where a journalist’s inbox is not flooded with press releases and media pitches. Let’s face it – journalists are busy people, and your email can easily get overlooked or sent to the “look at this later” pile. Letting your email go unseen may result in missed opportunities for your client.
Never assume that a journalist will respond to your email (if they even see it)!
At Right Hook, we do not only reach out to journalists via email. We also regularly follow up with the journalist directly! #Whatchaupto. It’s perfectly okay to pick up the phone and have a nice chat with journalists – giving you an opportunity to tell them your story but do respect their time and be prepared so you can get to the point quickly!
One size, fits all? No way!
In an agency, you are often tasked to service several clients. Your clients can come from a wide range of industries. Whether from lifestyle, food and beverage, government agencies or technology companies, there is no “one size, fits all” strategy that works for every client.
Managing your clients’ expectations is also crucial as unrealistically high demands could lead to disappointment. Instead, lay out realistic goals for each client and regularly review and adjust along the way. Sometimes, if you’re lucky, you find a client who totally gets you and that makes your job a dream, but even then it’s important to catch up regularly so you stay in synch.
The Client is not always right
“The client is always right!”- I’m sure we’ve all heard of that before. Well, this statement is not always true. Like everyone else, clients want the best for their brand but that does not mean that all their ideas are great. It’s up to us as a professional to advise the client on what is newsworthy and will garner the audience’s attention and what will not. Don’t be afraid to say ‘no’ when you need to. They’ll respect you for it (as long as you’re nice)!
Just beat it!
Part and parcel of our job is pitching to the media. At times, pitching can be a little tricky. Some publications might not be keen to feature your story or worse, your story may not fit their editorial scope. Be proactive and do thorough research before pitching to a publication – this saves you time to do more pitching to the correct publications and journalists will appreciate it when you pitch them relevant stories as opposed to stories that obviously don’t fit their area of interest. Creating editorial calendars for yourself will also come in handy as they can help you to identify upcoming stories and news angles the journalist may be looking for ahead of time.
In conclusion, do not feel discouraged when you make a mistake. Even the most seasoned PR professionals make mistakes. Learning from them and improving yourself is the best way to grow in the profession and move forward!
We got the right hook to ensure we get you where you want to be. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org now!