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What To Do With a Public Relations Degree

May 23, 2019

Congratulations! You earned your degree in public relations.

Now it’s time to figure out what to do with that degree. With every company needing some form of public relations representation to manage their reputation and promote relevant information, the options are almost limitless. 

The nice part about a public relations degree is that your services are needed everywhere. Being a good writer is a skill that companies value. Technology continues to grow, and with that growth comes more opinions on anything, and everything.

One Tweet can dismantle a positive reputation, a bad picture on Instagram can decrease your customer base, and a lack of social media presence can take a toll on your brand awareness.

Let’s get to work.

Public relations degree tips

Public relations professionals need to juggle many tasks while also pleasing stakeholders and the public. Standing out in a pile of resumes is tough.

There are certain skills that you must include on your public relations resume if you want to land the job. Having these skills on your resume will show recruiters that you’re a well-rounded professional who’s ready to take on whatever comes your way.

skills for your public relations resume

 Once your public relations resume is edited and ready to go, you can start firing it off to all the places at which you dream to work.

Public relations jobs

There are numerous routes you can take in public relations. If you’re taking the traditional route, your job title progression will look something like this:

public relations degree job progression

But there are other ways you can go, too. There are public relations opportunities in charity organizations, social media companies, advertising agencies, and event planning companies. Your titles will vary among these organizations, but the skills needed for these jobs remain the same.

Public relations manager

If you’re taking the traditional route. Becoming a public relations manager may be your end goal.

A public relations manager works with executive teams to spearhead public relations initiatives, like product releases, leadership changes, rebrandings, or any PR crisis.

If you’re a public relations director looking for a new public relations manager, you may want to look at an example of a public relations manager description.

Often times it’s difficult to articulate what a position actually entails, even if you are familiar with it.

Whether you want to be a public relations manager, or are looking to hire one, the core responsibilities will consist of the same key components:

  • Leading a team that executes public relations initiatives
  • Collaborating with C-suite executives on public relations goals
  • Managing/crafting your brand’s storyline and reputation among the public
  • Maintaining effective internal communication
  • Forming positive external relationships with the media to increase company visibility

Being an expert at the above responsibilities will guarantee success as a public relations manager.

Public relations specialist

A public relations specialist is a step below the manager. In this position, PR specialists communicate with the public to gain and maintain a positive image for the client or company they represent.

The duties of a public relations specialist are vast, but writing is the main responsibility. Public relations specialists write internal communication documents, press relations, Q-and-A interviews, presentations, and speeches/ scripts.

After they write they must find a way for the media to cover their content. Public relations specialists work to form relationships with gatekeepers to ensure media coverage.

There’s plenty of public relations specialist tips floating around, but the top tips are:

  • Don’t give up— follow-up
  • Build your network
  • Hone your writing skills
  • Understand journalists’ needs
  • Don’t underestimate press releases

Advice from pros

In order to land a public relations job, experts say to do the very things that you’ll be doing on the job. That is— pitch yourself, hone your writing skills, and network… a lot.

Using the skills you cultivated while getting your public relations degree to secure a job will not only increase your chances of getting the position, but it also proves to recruiters that you are more than capable doing a good job.

Get 30+ public relations resources, FREE.    Explore →

Welcome to the industry

The great part about a public relations degree is that your career possibilities are so vast. So dive right in and find the career that makes you the happiest using the degree you worked so hard to complete.

Wondering where you should place all the content you create? Learn how media outlets are transforming information delivery in public relations.

What To Do With a Public Relations Degree Have your public relations degree, but don’t know what to do with it? Lucky for you the options are endless for your career.
Deirdre O'Donoghue Deirdre O’Donoghue is a Content Manager at Nature's Fynd and a former Content Manager at G2. In her free time, you can find Deirdre fostering puppies or exploring the Chicago foodie scene. (she/her/hers)

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