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Confessions of a PR Intern: Sometimes you just have to WINE

June 7th, 2019 Posted by Food and Drink, Gala/Special Events, General, Jobs, PR Industry, Public Relations, Special Events, Team News No Comment yet

I didn’t know what to expect working for a public relations firm this Summer. I had some ideas in mind…. maybe lots of writing? Social media blasts? Busy work? Running errands and getting coffee orders? Well, my first week on the job did include some of these, but it was far more exciting than I could have ever imagined. It didn’t include coffee runs, dry cleaning or answering phone calls. I was truly part of the Lee and London team and got hands-on experience from the creative and strong women behind L&L PR.

Lee and London was hired to provide PR support for the fifth annual ‘Sip the City,’ an event put on by the San Diego Urban Wineries (SDUW). SDUW is a coalition of wineries throughout San Diego County who take grapes from the country and create award-winning, unique wine in the city. My first week coincided with this wine tasting event L&L PR had been preparing for the past two months.

First Week on Cloud Wine 😉
(Sorry not sorry for all the wine puns I couldn’t help myself!)

On my first day, I woke up at 5:50 a.m. (far earlier than any time I have woken up for class these past four years!) and met Corinne, a senior publicist, at Gianni Buonomo Vintners in Ocean Beach for a live FOX 5 segment with Tabitha Lipkin. We set up the back of the winery to display the bottles of different wines available at ‘Sip the City.’ We tasted a little wine and gave insight to the interviewees on different touchpoints to discuss on camera– I was feeling like a PR maven. If this is what public relations is like at L&L PR, COUNT ME IN!

The live Fox 5 segment

My next work day was Friday, May 31st, the day of ‘Sip the City.’ I drove up to Seaport Village with a 6-by-7 carpet of artificial grass to help build and run the brainchild of L&L PR, the Rosé Garden. While we were not enlisted to produce the Rosé Garden, we became so obsessed with the idea that we ran with it! The Rosé Garden offered rosé tastings from 12 wineries at the event. After months of preparation, it was the L&L team’s turn to unWINE while we interns stepped up.

We poured, we drank (just a little obviously because we were working!) and we promoted the social media giveaway of four passports to San Diego Urban Wineries. The Rosé Garden gave people an opportunity to take pictures, sign up for the SDUW newsletter and drink rosé all day night!

I can’t promise every week will be like this with Lee and London, but my first week was wine I’ll never forget! Cheers!

One of the beautiful parts of the Rosé Garden!

10 Tips to Land your Dream PR Job

December 21st, 2018 Posted by General, PR Industry, PR Jobs No Comment yet

It’s almost the New Year and for many that means job hunting. College students will be entering their final semesters of senior year and will suddenly find themselves faced with the very real challenge of getting a good job after graduation. In PR, landing a good job can be difficult as the competition for the best jobs is fierce. To help aspiring PR pros land their dream gig, here are some things you can do to stand out from the crowd.

1. Get an internship, or two, or three- Most PR agencies will not consider you a “strong” applicant for an entry level postion unless you have had at least two (or even three) internships within the field. Learn all you can in your internships and show potential employers you’ve learned the basic PR skills, like navigating clipping services, producing coverage reports and building media lists. These tasks may seem basic, but they are time consuming to learn, and an internship is the best way to get familiar with programs like Cision, Burrelles, SproutSocial and Vocus.

2. Display strong writing skills– If you claim you’re a strong writer but have a typo in your cover letter, resume or writing samples, you’re not off to a good start. PR is a ton of writing and editing, so it’s important to show every potential employer that you can effectively use AP Style and edit your own work. Since it’s often harder to catch your own errors (that’s why even the best reporters have editors), always have a friend or classmate proofread your resume, cover letter AND the body of your e-mail.

3. Pay attention– When you’re job hunting you may send out your resume and cover letter to a large amount of companies, meaning you should always be editing your work before hitting send. It’s embarrassing and down right insulting to read about how passionate you are about getting a job at a different company. Always know who you are sending your materials to and write specifically for them.

4. Forego teen speech– For many young adults it’s easy to get caught up using adolescent language. Whether you are networking or interviewing, it’s always important to speak like a grown up. This means avoiding: um, like, totally, definitely, uh huh and all abbreviations. (I know, right?….) Speak like a child and people will treat you like one, speak like an adult to earn respect. At our office we recently created a “fer” jar. Every time you say “fer” instead of “for” you put 5 cents in the jar. It’s a great reminder to pay attention to the vocabulary we use, and of course the plus side is that we never have a shortage of change for afternoon coffee runs to Starbucks.

5. Get social– Knowing how to use social media correctly is huge in public relations; it’s how we connect to our audiences. If you don’t have a LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook get them now! Many PR employers won’t even consider you if your Instagram, Twitter and Facebook aren’t actively used.

6. Learn to network– Sometimes it IS all about who you know. Landing a great job doesn’t always require sending your resume to every agency under the sun. The best way to find a job is to find people who can help find you a job. Having a referral, even if it’s someone who met you once at an event, will give you instant credibility and often will earn you an interview ahead of someone else.

7. Get Involved in PRSA/ New Pros– A follow up to #6. Join your local chapter of PRSA (Public Relations Society of America). We asked current  PRSA San Diego President Reema Makani Boccia why job hunters should be involved with PRSA and here’s what she had to say:

“The most important thing PRSA facilitates for its members is the opportunity to establish and foster relationships with other PR professionals, media and the community at large. As the largest trade organization for PR pros nationally and locally, PRSA has the potential to expose its members to a whole network of professionals that they may not otherwise have access to. The more you get involved, the more you get out of it, and perhaps make a few friends along the way!”

8. Business cards– Never attend a networking event empty handed; no one will know how to contact you. Some employers forget their business cards or run out before you have a chance to capture their info. So take the initiative and make your own cards (Staples and Office Depot offer pre-perforated business card templates that work with most printers), it won’t go unnoticed.

9. Follow-up– PR is a competitive field and jobs move quickly. Following up with potential employers is key to landing the job. Don’t wait two weeks to inquire about a position or send a thank-you letter a month after an interview. You need to act fast and prove that you really want the job. That means an e-mail the same day (or definitely within 24 hours) and if you really want to stand out, send a handwritten thank-you card in the mail the moment you leave the interview. They’ll get it the next day and be amazed by your planning and professionalism.

10. Read and read some more– Read anything and everything: newspapers, magazines, novels, autobiographies, etc. Whether you read “Lord of the Rings” or “Twilight,” sharpening your mind through reading will keep you up-to-date on current events, make you smarter, and best of all, will make you a better writer.

Interested in a job with Lee and London? Get in touch!