Requirements for a modern specialist in advertising and public relations
The content of professional activities of a PR specialist
The content of professional activities of PR-specialists is one of the topical problems of theory and practice of public relations. The very multidimensionality of the concept of public relations (PR), which has absorbed a multitude of functions and generated a lot of definitions, the blurriness of the professional field of activity, the lack of unified approaches and clear criteria among both theorists and practitioners, generates many difficulties, young professionals trying to find their way into the profession. Without a clear understanding of the content of this activity, it is difficult to determine the main directions in the professional training of specialists.
The content of the professional activities of specialists in public relations is determined by the functions that they perform. In the specialized literature there has been a long discussion about the definition of the content and functions of PR. At the heart of the discussion is the question of what is the main function of PR activities: informing, persuading or dialogue with the public, aimed at harmonizing interests. Let's consider the most significant, in our opinion, point of view on the given problem.
Sam Black in his book "Introduction to Public Relations" has identified ten main areas of PR:
1. Public opinion.
2. Public relations.
3. Government relations.
4. Social life.
5. Industrial Communications.
6. Financial relations.
7. International relations.
8. Relations with consumers.
9. Research and statistics.
10. Mass media.
The tasks of PR-specialists (according to Sam Black):
• counseling based on the understanding of human behavior;
• Analysis of possible trends and prediction of their consequences;
• the study of public opinion, expectations and views of society and the development of recommendations for implementing the necessary measures;
• establishing and maintaining mutual communication based on the reliability and completeness of information;
• preventing conflict and misunderstandings;
• Promoting mutual respect and social responsibility;
• Harmonization of personal and public interests;
• Improvement of friendly relations with personnel, suppliers and customers;
• Improvement of industrial relations;
• attracting qualified personnel and reducing staff turnover;
• expansion of the market of goods and services;
• Maximize profitability;
• formation of corporate identity.
Thus, we can identify the dominant
types of activities and range of tasks for specialists in advertising and public relations.
Dominant activities and the range of tasks
The duties of an advertising and public relations specialist currently include the following:
• creating and maintaining a favorable image of the company;
• the establishment of information flows;
• Working with the press, providing specially prepared information to the media on behalf of the company, creating news events, sending newsletters with posting on major news portals;
• Development, planning, budgeting and implementation of communication strategies, projects, concepts, programs;
• creation of text content of corporate information materials;
• writing articles, slogans, speeches, booklets, press releases, interviews, materials on services and projects;
• editing site content;
• planning, organizing and holding press conferences, exhibitions, interviews, seminars, presentations, promotions and special events;
• work with advertising and PR agencies for organizing advertising campaigns;
• work with printing houses, advertising agencies: coordination of activities in the development and manufacture of printed products;
• Development of the creative concept of promotional materials (models, rollers, booklets, souvenir products), ensuring their production;
• company representation at conferences, exhibitions;
• publication of a corporate magazine.
Characteristics of the functions of an advertising and public relations specialist
The specific functions of a specialist in advertising and PR depend on the profile and scale of the organization's activities, on how much the modern communication technologies influence the effectiveness of the organization's activity and how widely they are used in the daily activities of the organization.
In broad terms, the PR specialist and advertising specialists should have the following main tasks representing the whole range of functions of PR activities, including the use of advertising communications as a PR tool:
• to form and maintain an appropriate image of the organization and activities of the staff;
• Identify the opinion of personnel through sociological research and bring this information to the management of the organization;
• Advise management on communication problems, their solutions;
• Improve the corporate culture of the company;
• organize and coordinate special events;
• create corporate publications, attracting specialists in this field;
• use modern advertising technologies to solve communication problems;
• plan advertising activities and evaluate its communication/economic efficiency.
It is clear that these tasks, due to their breadth and diversity, rather describe the work of the PR department than one PR specialist. But in organizations where there is no PR-department as a structural unit, these tasks often have to be solved by one PR-specialist working in marketing, advertising and other related departments.
To effectively interact with other members of the organization, the PR manager/PR-specialist should be positioned in the structure of the organization in such a way that he is accountable to senior management and work with all departments.
In the narrow sense the functions of a specialist in the field of PR and advertising communications can be considered depending on the direction of his work.
1. Work with clients.
• Positioning the organization.
• Analysis of client settings.
• Special events to attract new customers.
• Work with complaints and claims.
2. Working with partners.
• Establishing a long-term relationship.
• Development of special communication programs.
• Broadcast the company's image through partners.
3. Work with the media.
• Creation of advertising materials for the media, their placement and evaluation of effectiveness.
• Building and maintaining communications with target media (press conferences, presentations).
• Media monitoring.
• Compiling media cards.
• Operational contact with the media in a crisis situation.
4. Work with the company's management.
• Definition company mission (policy, formal strategic goal).
• Formation of corporate culture, corporate identity, company image.
• Supervising management contacts and preparing speeches at presentations, special events, interviews with the media.
• Organization of special events (press conferences, presentations, holidays, exhibitions, meetings, etc.).
• Forecasting crises and planning Crisis Management.
• Developing a policy of the firm's relations with competitors and opposition (hostile public groups/individuals).
5. Intra-corporate PR.
• Development of corporate standards.
• Conducting corporate events.
• Participation in specialized exhibitions, competitions, conferences.
• Collection, storage, updating and systematization of information about the company (archive/history of the company).
• The introduction/prevention of rumors.
• Maintaining positive/correcting negative stereotypes.
• Reconciliation of any documentation that is targeted to the mass consumer.
6. Work with investors.
• Drawing up a calendar of financial communications.
• Institutional meetings.
• Communication with shareholders.
• Drawing up an annual report.
• Financial relations with the media.
7. Implementation of Internet communications.
• Promotion of the company, its products and services through the company's website, corporate blog.
• Organization of promotion in social networks.
• Monitoring of the appearance of positive/negative information about the company on the Internet, correction of negative information.
• Develop and conduct online events.
• Placement of promotional materials and evaluation of their communicative/economic effectiveness.
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