The Do’s and Don’ts of Applying for a PR Internship
Oh, hey, soon-to-be college graduate – I see you checking out the BPR website. If you’re hoping to get into the PR industry and looking for an internship, there are certain things you should and should not do to stand out during the interview process. Below are a few do’s and don’ts that make a PR internship candidate either shine in our eyes or, well, not.
- Prove that you’ve multitasked — to the extreme
- In the PR industry, not a single day is the same. We rearrange and edit our to-do lists multiple times a day. Higher priority items supersede high priority items; tasks that weren’t in our hemisphere at 9:00am dictate our day by 9:30am. There are 30 balls in the air at all times (and sometimes, when it gets super fun, we’ll find ourselves juggling 50 balls, wondering why physicists haven’t yet figured out how to stop time). Staying organized amongst differing degrees of craziness is essential, and we want to know that you can stay composed and on top of your workload without us having to micromanage you. Prove that you’ve mastered this in past experiences.
Don’t just say you’ve juggled your workload in college. These class requirements are outlined in the professor’s syllabus on day one, and fulfilling university credit stipulations while being involved in a sorority, band, Quidditch club, whatever, is not the same as juggling your workload in this industry – trust us.
- Provide (well-written) writing samples
- In PR, we write. A lot. Whether it’s a press release, pitch, blog post or some variation, being able to communicate well via the written word is tantamount. Show us your grammar acumen and creativity with some writing samples.
Don’t have any typos in your cover letter, resume or emails. A big part of our job is editing and checking for grammar, so this is a deal-breaker. Let me repeat: DEAL-BREAKER. We’ve seen resumes and cover letters in which Barokas is repeatedly misspelled; “your” is used in place of “you’re”; run-on sentences are utilized so frequently, cover letters read like lengthy streams of consciousness, etc., etc. Read and reread for mistakes – find them. Or we will.
- Know what PR professionals actually do
- Be clear and precise in your reasoning as to why you want to get into PR. Many people don’t know what PR professionals do. This includes some of our spouses, boyfriends/girlfriends, parents, pets, etc. We need to make sure you’re knowledgeable about the industry and as passionate about PR as we are.
Don’t just say you want to help clients, that you’re a “people person,” (what does this even mean? You breathe air and don’t hate it?), or you think PR sounds fast-paced and interesting. Be specific. Do research. Google. Share what really excites you about PR.
- Be yourself (as clichéd as it sounds)
- At BPR, we regard each other as a “work family.” We have a wide range of interests, hobbies, skills and passions, which only makes us better as a whole. Our individual uniqueness allows us to generate original, creative ideas for our clients. So, go ahead – show us your unique, irreplaceable self. We really want to meet the Real You.
Don’t be afraid to get creative with your resume. It’s another way to show your personality and showcase your skillset.
If you’re interested in an internship with BPR and ready to ride the fun, crazy wave that is PR, send your cover letter and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org.
— Randi and Aerin
Hiring managers often read through cover letters to figure out which resumes or CVs they want to read. Building an informative and engaging letter is a necessity if you want to get a job interview. You can use the public relations cover letter example and do and don’t tips to make sure your own document will be truly attention grabbing.
- Do spend time perfecting your opening statement. The example applicant describes herself as a highly skilled public relations representative,” which should interest employers from the start.
- Don’t get caught up in tangents. Keep your entire letter focused on the skills, accomplishments, and experiences you have that make you a great fit for the public relations job at hand.
- Do try to match your letter to the company’s tone. Take the time to read through portions of the company website to learn about normal language used so you can incorporate that into your letter.
- Don’t be afraid to add some different formatting to your letter. You may be able to make your document stand out by incorporating a headline or a bulleted list.
Public Relations Advice
PR professionals handle public relations for businesses and organizations. To get hired as a public relations pro, you’ll need media savvy, great writing and speaking skills, and a cover letter that highlights your qualifications. If you need a hand with your letter, check out these cover letter examples. The cover letter examples below are an important resource you can use to improve your public relations cover letter. Click on any of the templates below to get started.
Cover Letter Tips for Public Relations
Those seeking jobs as a Public Relations, and any other location, should know what steps to take to make the searching process simpler. This short guide will help you get started.
1. Understand that the search will likely be a long one. That is just how the job market is right now. Because employers are looking for someone with a good attitude, you cannot afford to become pessimistic or discouraged if your job hunt drags on.
2. Do your research. Before you begin looking for work, understand what is expected of applicants in this field, what the typical hiring practices are, and what common methods others have used to break into the industry.
3. Know what other options you have as well. Additionally, there is a chance you will not be able to find the kind of work you are looking for. In this situation, you should also have an understanding of related work in other fields.
4. Always follow up on applications and interviews. Besides making you stand out from the crowd, it will ensure you are still a consideration for the job. In fact, many applicants are rejected simply because they are never heard from again.
5. There are many online resources available to you. Utilizing everything from cover letter or application assessments to databases will make your search more effective.
Public Relations Job Seeking Tips
If you are looking for jobs as a Public Relations, make sure to prioritize your cover letter. It will be one of the most important aspects of your search. This short guide should help you create a strong cover letter.
1. Be active. Focus on the things you have done, mostly in the accomplishments or experiences sections, instead of lists of facts or job descriptions. Employers want an active worker.
2. Write your cover letter as specific as possible. You should find ways to focus your cover letter around the specific job you are applying for. In fact, it is good practice to rework your cover letter slightly for each new job you consider.
3. Find a way to stand out. There will be many cover letters the employer looks at. Yours need to be unique so it will not blend in with the crowd. Think about how you would answer this question: What unique benefits do I bring to the table. “
4. Prioritize your experiences section. This is the most important part of your cover letter, and the section employers are most interested in, so it should be the longest, strongest, and the core of your cover letter.
5. Keep your cover letter concise. Only those with work histories extending past 10 years should consider having a cover letter longer than one page. Typically, your goal will be to completely fill a single sheet, without bleeding onto a second page.