This post is part of our intern blog series that aims to help young professionals land and make the most of their PR agency internships. For the next few weeks, our whiz-bang team of interns will give you some insider information on What They Didn’t Tell You about careers in PR.
Moving from sunny Los Angeles to rainy Seattle, I’ve had the opportunity to work in two major PR hubs. Because of this, I’ve had many Seattleites ask me about my experience in LA. With those questions, I’ve also heard some assumptions about LA PR that were clearly drawn from popular media. Below, I attempt to break the myths as well as provide insight around my internship here at Weber Shandwick Seattle.
5 Myths about PR in LA:
1) PR is all glamour in La La Land.
We can thank the movies that portray LA as a glamorous party-world for this perception. In reality, it’s not all glamour. PR is hard work that involves having creativity, organizing events at the drop of a hat, pleasing clients and getting journalists to like you and the boss to promote you. But glamorous or not, PR is fun anywhere.
2) PR firms in LA only have Hollywood clients.
Believe it or not, PR firms in LA have tech companies, historians and even dietitians as clients. I’ve worked with clients in various sectors and it’s been a great learning experience.
Check out Weber Shandwick Los Angeles to get an idea of various PR practices that exist in LA. You’ll quickly see that it’s more than Hollywood and entertainment clients.
3) You get to organize events with A-list actors on the invite list.
Working in LA, it’s assumed that PR folks can easily get A-list actors to attend their events. While this may be the case for some events, it’s a lot more involved than you may think. To invite actors, you need to first pursue their publicists, some of whom are unwilling to let their clients out of their sight. Just because you live in LA doesn’t mean it’s easy to party with stars.
4) Working in LA is basically like partying.
PR in LA is highly competitive. The work requires creativity and commitment. Like everywhere else, working on weekends is not uncommon. You may not get to party everyday but there are those occasional events and fundraisers that are fun!
5) You need contacts to be successful in LA.
When I started my PR career in LA, I didn’t have any media contacts. But that didn’t stop me from getting client coverage in top local newspapers and it shouldn’t stop you either. Picking up the phone and introducing yourself to a journalist always helps.
I’ve worked with a couple of PR firms in LA. While they added to my experience, I wanted to explore other cities. That brought me to Weber Shandwick Seattle. As an intern in Seattle, I’ve enjoyed working with creative minds and strengthened my experience in PR. Below I’ve highlighted a few exciting aspects about working in Seattle at Weber Shandwick.
5 Exciting Things about Working at Weber Shandwick Seattle:
1) You get to work with the most intelligent and creative minds.
I work on the Global Tech Practice team and get to work with great minds like Global Tech Practice President Heidi Sinclair and New Business and Marketing Director Karissa Sams. They’ve given me the opportunity to prove my abilities, explore my potential and challenge myself at every step.
2) Interns too, have brains.
My experience interning in Seattle has been great as interns are encouraged to do more challenging work than running out to FedEx. Interns get to be highly involved in the accounts they work on and do things like attend client meetings, take part in brainstorm sessions and voice opinions and ideas.
3) Work and play makes the Seattle office a fun environment.
4) There are plenty of training sessions.
This is the first internship that’s given me access to multiple training sessions. Sessions have covered topics like pitching best practices, AP style writing and mastering communication.
5) Your (good) work doesn’t go unnoticed.
Any work you do for your team is always acknowledged and appreciated. Weber Shandwick Seattle employees are known for making their interns feel valuable to the company. Work small and large are well noticed and appreciated. Even creating a quick media list didn’t go unnoticed by my manager who praised me for putting in the time and effort to pull together a list in a short span of time.
Overall, Weber Shandwick Seattle and Seattle in general are great with highly creative and friendly individuals. My experience has been positive and I would like to work in this city for a longer period of time.
PR is fun everywhere but each city has its own charm. How is working as a PR professional different in your city?
Image courtesy of Kdt..