Advertising / Public Relations Jobs & Graduate Schemes

Working in Advertising / Public Relations

Advertising is the way that products are pitched ahead of their rivals. Along with PR, these fields are not selling, but it is persuading a targeted audience that this product is better than anything else and warrants their attention and custom. Products and services are the main sources for Advertising; it can be an array of things covering events, initiatives and brand awareness. This is similar to Public Relations; they aim to generate publicity and awareness for a client or company. There are not necessarily selling, however like Sales, applications can be a perfect way for candidates to show off their skills and advertise themselves as an ideal candidate.

Both industries are fast paced, dynamic and allow a lot of creative freedom. This being the case, Advertising and Public Relations are some of the most competitive industries for graduates to enter. Candidates wanting to pursue a career in Advertising or PR need to be prepared to put the work in, far beyond just qualifications, to get anywhere near the sector. With Public Relations, candidates need to be slick and smooth operators. They must be able to charm anyone and network in any and every situation. It is vital for hopeful PR officers to operate simultaneously on a variety of channels with the aim to make it the brand in demand.

Success in Advertising

Candidates applying for Advertising roles need to be generally well rounded, but to a high standard. Obviously, different roles within advertising require different skills specific for each of the roles. However to get over the line into the business, candidates would be advised to take on a few tips. Confidence, organisation and being up to date with trends are all key to anyone that works in Advertising. Proving to employers these skills is important but not necessarily easy to provide examples for. If you can demonstrate busy extra-curricular, academic and part time work schedules, employers are likely to see that you can cope.

Other skills that are important in Advertising are communication and research. Advertising is a communication business. Applicants need to have exemplary communication skills not only interdepartmental but for clients and pitches. This also requires confidence in presenting. The research side, especially applicable to the Account Planning side, is important to understand audience moods, buying patterns and trends amongst different demographics. These skills can be gained at university, depending on the degree the applicant has studied. Candidates should think about times they have presented to a large group of strangers, especially out of seminars or compulsory circumstances.

It is important that applicants demonstrate at least some experience in Advertising. The competition is so great that applicants without experience or an internship behind them can be rejected early on. The important thing about work experience, placements and internships is what you have learnt and what you can take away from it. Employers want to see what candidates did when they were on placements, how they contributed and how they can apply what they've learnt. If graduates want to go into Advertising and do not have any experience in the industry, even if they studied it at university, they would be advised to try and find some. Any evidence of being proactive and trying to learn the trade will help applications immeasurably.

One thing that employers always ask for when applying for the creative side of Advertising is a strong portfolio. This is an applicant's chance to shine. A portfolio should be filled with a candidate's best and most impressive work. When applying for the creative side in Advertising, candidates should have great ideas falling out of this collection. One way to improve a portfolio is to include work outside of university. If a portfolio is just a final year Advertising project, employers will more than likely have other enthusiastic options. Candidates should be making campaigns for companies they like or have thought of a great way to improve.

This enthusiasm and individualism is needed across all advertising roles. Candidates need to be going that extra mile, coming up with creative ways they can make their application stand out and most of all think of ways that they can advertise themselves to employers. Graduates should utilise the way they inform the employers of who they are, to demonstrate their skills in Advertising.

Public Relations

Public Relations is the industry concerned with how a company is perceived by its audience. This is managed by press releases, advertising, events and much more. A candidate can either work for an agency which is outsourced to manage a company's reputation, perception or image. PR can also be done in-house, which attends to the same responsibilities and commonly found at larger organisations.

The nature of PR is extremely personable. To make it candidates must be excellent communicators, talkers and ooze influence. A fundamental skill in PR is the ability to network. Having a decent contact list is a good start, but the best PR officers have more contacts than the Yellow Pages.

There are many different aspects to good PR, so candidates must be attacking on all fronts. Applicants should have a flawless portfolio that documents all the different aspects of great PR. It should include things like press releases, publicity and statistics from an event you organised, responses from attendees, newspaper features, clippings, as well as analytics and samples from social media. Candidates need to show employers that they are the complete package with enthusiasm by the bucket load.

PR is a frightfully competitive industry to get into. Experience and internships are vital for any success a candidate might have. The more candidates can indicate to employers that they've seen how PR functions in the work place, the more the employer will believe they can rely on them. One thing to try would be if a candidate made their own PR project. It could be creating a buzz around campus about a society or a local business. All of this should be coupled with enthusiasm and drive.

Advertising / Public Relations Interview Ratings


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