Someone recently asked what exactly I do in a P.R. agency all day. The answer is, I write, write and write some more.
I write news releases, bylined articles and feature stories. I write news pitches to send to reporters and P.R. plans and proposals to send to clients. I write emails, letters and memos. I write speeches, talking points and blogs. And I write copy for websites, brochures and ads. Luckily, I like to write.
Don’t like to write? Then P.R. may not be right for you or you may want to pursue opportunities to hone your craft. If you’re out of school, consider taking a class at a nearby college or university. As I think back, a variety of classes helped me develop writing skills.
- If you take nothing else, take a journalism class and learn AP style. Better yet, take two or three.
- Speech classes will teach you to structure your content for oral presentations.
- Advertising copywriting classes will teach you to write short, pithy copy.
- A philosophy class taught me how to craft a written argument to support a certain viewpoint or position.
- Latin taught me grammar (even better than English did, I believe).
- Typing (now called keyboarding!) taught me the difference in writing a memo and a letter.
Learn how you use a different voice or style when you write different things. Even using the same messages, you’ll write a news release differently from an opinion piece or a speech.
And then start writing. Write a lot. Get feedback on your writing and apply that feedback to your next effort. Keep an AP Stylebook close at hand.
So that’s what I do all day. How about you?