7 Lessons for First Time Public Relations Managers


Public Relations Manager - 5wpr

According to the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA), PR professionals work in almost every industry in America. In fact, they have over 20,000 professional members and 10,000 college members. The PRSA defines public relations as a strategic communication method that manages relationships between the public and target organization. Below introduces seven important lessons for new public relations managers.

Stay Organized

PR professionals must continually juggle simultaneous projects that are often equally demanding. PR managers should schedule time every morning to organize and schedule daily tasks, such as important calls, emails and follow ups. Every day should end with a few minutes of preparation for the following days’ tasks. Without staying proactively organized, PR managers will simply spend the entire day trying to catch up with emails and tasks. A PR professionals’ smart phone, computer and work area should be similarly synced and organized with minimal clutter.


Every PR project may involve different client demographics. Always approach every project as an exciting opportunity with unique target demographics. Never assume that demographic groups are similar. Instead, think outside the box and come up with innovate approaches to engaging and communicating with each demographic group. Keep up with the top trends on social media through online tools, such as Twitter lists.

Social Media Basics

Social media has quickly become one of the most important ways to engage clients and the public. Social media reaches a broader audience, improves branding and boosts digital marketing through improved SEO hits. However, social media is also a double-edged sword. Organizations experiencing a PR crisis must properly prepare and respond to social media in order to avoid serious negative PR consequences

Crisis Management

The first step in crisis management is being aware of what is going on inside and outside the organization. The second step is having a solid social media strategy for PR crises. Most media outlets now use social media as primary news sources. Therefore, it is critical to establish and cultivate positive relationships with journalists and news outlets through social media. This will allow you to immediately respond to problems in a timely and proper manner. Keep in mind that a PR professionals’ job security is closely linked with how well they respond to and manage a major social media crisis.

Establish your Core Competencies

Every PR professional should have their own expertise niche. This can be established through interviews, a personal blog and responding to social media comments. If blogging isn’t possible, focus on being a guest blogger for popular blogs. You can also share information with the public through local events, online videos, podcasts and webinars. Doing this will establish credibility and a firm reputation, which will be quite useful when responding to any negative situations.

Continuing Education

This involves formal education, such as attending classes, seminars or workshops. However, it also involves informal venues, such as working with mentors and experienced PR professionals. On the other hand, helping other PR professionals will provide a unique form of learning. Always be curious and open to learning a new side to the business. The more industrial experience a PR professional has, the more they can provide customized PR content.

Communication Skills

PR and communication skills go hand in hand. However, very few PR professionals will be a public spokesperson. In fact, most PR is done digitally through online published content. Therefore, it is important to unlearn what professors taught in university and instead, learn through imitating the most successful PR professionals. In addition to this, always ask for feedback in order to make your writing more concise while being engaging and enjoyable.

Following the above tips do not guarantee success for a first time Public Relations Manager, but it sure will certainly help make your transition smoother!
Erika Kauffman is the General Manager and Partner of NYC based PR Firm 5WPR.

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