By Nathan Brook
Public image is at the forefront of all successful businesses, whether they’re a small start-up or a global corporation. Additionally, the rise of social media and influencer marketing means that these sometimes high-profile individuals also need to be cautious about their public perception. All of this means that PR professionals are in high demand today, and the job market remains competitive for the best talent even as more and more candidates enter the job market.
As such, it’s vital that you take the time and the effort to create specific applications for any jobs you decide to apply for. Not only will this make your application stand out, but it will also make it easier for the hiring manager to see exactly why you’re the right person for the role. Here, we share our top tips.
Make it personal
The generic ‘Dear Sir/Madam’ won’t make your application stand out. Instead, do your best to address it to the hiring manager. Their name may well be on the application, but if not, you should be able to use the power of LinkedIn to find out who they are – being in PR means you need to be good at finding the right contacts.
Do your research
Read the job description, read up about the company and the clients they represent, read up on the hiring manager and the team if you can. Whilst you don’t want to come across too strong, having this information in your mind will help you craft the perfect resume and cover letter for that company, rather than one that could be used anywhere. Yes, it will take more time, but it will surely be worth it if you get the job you want.
Think about the key skills you need
There are many skills that you need to be a good PR. Time management, being aware of the industry, communication skills, the ability to stay calm under pressure are all essentials. You should use your resume and cover letter as an opportunity to clearly demonstrate that you have those skills, as well as covering anything specific you have from the job description.
Your cover letter or resume will also be a good time to mention the size of the accounts you’ve managed if this isn’t your first PR role – this will give the hiring manager some indication of the level of responsibility you’re used to, and key statistics can really make your application stand out. Just make sure you don’t mention any client names if you’re not meant to.
Showcase your social media and professional qualifications
Having an online presence in PR can really help. Professional profiles like LinkedIn can allow potential employers and clients to get a feel for how you work, what you stand for and what you can potentially do for them, so make sure everything is up to date. Unless you’re happy for everyone to see your social media, now is the time to lock your private accounts, too – you can always make a public profile for work.
You should also make sure that your professional qualifications are listed on your LinkedIn profile, as well as your resume, and that you share a link to your profile. Not only does this show the extra skills you have that another candidate might not have, but it also shows you’re committed to keeping up to date with new information and technologies.