Wednesday, 16 May 2012


I'm at the end of my second year in my PR degree and I'm currently on the hunt for an internship/ work experience in order to bulk up my CV and for it to look more impressive once I've finished my degree. At the moment I am involved in charity PR and I doing some volunteering work for them that involves PR.
However, I'm not going to make this post into a 'how to get in charity PR' and internships involved in this area, I'm going to look at internships in general and the steps I'm taking to try and find one myself.

What is PR?

Firstly, it might be easier for you to understand what PR is and why I'm interested in the area. The idea of PR is to gain coverage for the brand that you are working for e.g. in magazines, newspapers, blogs or on the radio. With the increase in social media the list is endless! The aim is to catch the attention of people and get them talking about the brand or the product, so its all about creativity - writing press releases, organising event.
There are 2 types of places that you can work in PR: agencies, these are companies who look after a number of clients (brands) and they focus on working on the PR for them, whereas the other is 'In-house' which is where the brand does the PR for themselves.

What next?

So before you start looking, one of the key pieces of advice I have is to be prepared! Many internships will offer an interview at very short notice and they are unpaid most of the time, however your travel expenses may be covered. I've looked at a wide variety of internships for PR and have found that most of them are located in London.
It is also a good idea to try and keep your CV up-to-date so that if your continuously applying for internships and doing other things at the same time. Another key piece of advice is to mention your blog on your CV! Especially if your interested in beauty/ fashion and thats what your applying for, as this is a record showing that your passionate about the subject and this will work in your favour!

Where to look?

One of the least obvious places to look for internships/ work experience is Twitter! Many brands
will 'tweet' upcoming and current opportunities, so keep an eye out for any opportunities that are advertised. Also try and follow the brands/ companies that you are interested in working for as this allows you to have a direct connection with them. Other places that can be used to find beauty PR interns are 'Diary Directory Job Lot' - this is like a big Yellow Pages advertising internships around the country (again mainly in London). Another website that I'd recommend is 'CEW', this has the odd internship advertised. Lastly, talk to people! If you want to get involved in a specific company, directly contact them via phone not email that way they can not ignore you and it shows your interest, also if you have friends/ family members talk to them and ask them to put in a good word for. One of the key pieces of advice that I was given by industry experts is 'it's not what you know, it's who you know'.


Most people have the view of interviews being horrible, I know I do! I am also terrible at them but one of the things that I have learnt lately about myself is that I need to have more confidence and that is one of the main traits that they want to see in PR, as well as organisation, creativity and good writing skills. All of these things are shown through blogging, so try and involve that somewhere in the interview. Also do not just let them ask you questions, have some questions ready yourself 'what would a typical day for an intern be like?', 'how many people work at the company?'. These make you sound really interested in the internship and show your prepared. Also it is good to know how long the intern will last for (usually its between 3-6 months) and what expenses they offer to you. 
What to expect?

Be prepared to send alot of emails, in the last couple of months I must have sent out 20+ emails/ applications for work experience/ interns. This has made me learn one thing... be patient and you will get there eventually. Also be prepared for rejection, I could not count the number of 'no's' on one hand, that I have received for job applications etc, it starts to get you down after a while but then you realise that it will pay off eventually and to just keep putting the effort in. The work experience that I am doing at the moment is 'freelance' in a way, I get asked to write press releases and put together PR campaigns every now and then and for the other I am currently in the process of producing a website for the charity, along with one of my university friends! This has not been touched for a few weeks but I have had university work to do first, but they understand and I got took on through university.

No matter what opportunity you get, just be proactive and enthusiastic with everything they throw at you, at the end of the day everything you do is more experience to put on your CV. You might hate it but everyone has to start somewhere, the more experience that you get the better! One last piece of advice is to keep your CV up to date and keep a diary of what tasks you are doing each day so that you can pop this on your CV!

Right, ramble over! I hope that this helps some of you, if you have any other questions or I have missed something leave it in the comments below and I'll try and answer it! :D

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