Archive for job training
Whether or not you love or hate the media relations aspect of the industry, you typically need to have it mastered to be able to successfully progress in communications.
So how do you get to mastering this “art”? The same way you get to Carnegie Hall: practice, practice, practice.
Here are a few tips to help you get your pitch perfect before you reach out to anyone:
- Write out the key points you want to make; you can keep them in front of you when making calls, but writing it down will help you to figure out what you want to say and help identify the most important points you need to discuss.
- Practice! Ask another account team member or even just mumble it to yourself. If you can’t keep concisely convey the point, you are not ready to call anyone, especially not a busy person in the media. This will also help you to make sure you don’t stumble over any points.
- Be sure to keep your initial pitch down to 20-30 seconds. If the person you’ve called keeps you on the phone longer and asks, questions, that’s great, but keep it short when first trying to sell the idea.
- Do your research. Make sure the person you’re calling is the BEST person at that particular outlet, which means you should be reading what they typically cover and all recent articles.
- Emailing a pitch? Common sense says that you should proofread it, but it also never hurts to have someone else from your team take a quick look to make sure it’s informative, yet to the point.
These are just a few items to keep in mind when pitching. If you get nervous, just remember, you’re pitching via email and/or the phone, no one can see you.
This guest blog series is by Ellie Jesse. Stay tuned throughout the summer to hear more from Ellie.
If you’re reading this blog, you probably already know how important internships are.
What you might not realize, is how awesome they are. It has taken me three summers and five rounds of internships to truly appreciate the art of it all. When I began my first internship at Peppercom in the summer of 2010, I had little to no experience and absolutely no idea how lucky I was. Feeling like you are at the bottom of the totem pole is not necessarily a confidence booster.
My point: sometimes interns take for granted what they have. Let’s break it down:
- First and Foremost, You’re in College. When you’re done with your summer internship, while everyone else is continuing on the daily grind, you get to go back to school with experience under your belt. Need I say more?
- Internships are like Trial Runs. If by the end of your internship, you realize you don’t like what you are doing, don’t do it again! Being able to check something off your list is priceless. Figuring out what you don’t want to do will lead you to what you do want to do.
- A Wealth of Knowledge. Interns are certainly hired to increase productivity, but good internship programs hire interns so they can learn. As an intern, you are in a position to ask questions, explore the company, and try something you don’t know anything about. People want you to succeed; they want to help you learn new things.
- Resume, Portfolio, Website–You Name It. Internships are automatic generators for your personal brand. By the time you finish your college internships, you should be proud to type your name into Google.
When I started my internship journey, I didn’t appreciate what I had. When else are you going to have an excuse to change jobs every summer? Probably not too often. So wave your intern flag high, I certainly do.
Ellie Jesse is a senior studying public relations at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at UNC-Chapel Hill. She is a former Peppercom intern, having completed two internships at the agency. Currently, Ellie is a marketing intern for MBA@UNC, which is a distance MBA offered through UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School. Ellie also blogs for InternQueen.com and myPRconnection.
Peppercom has prided itself on having a fantastic in-house education program. These programs are agency-wide and vary in topics from crisis communications to a year-long intensive writing program.
For better . . . or for better, part of that program consists of stand-up comedy training. Yes, you heard that right. Comedy training.
It sounds like a strange concept, but it’s certainly another factor that makes Peppercom unique. The training helps to further foster growth in presentation skills and the ability to think on one’s feet. Oh, and the whole agency is now great at ‘knock-knock’ jokes.
So, yes, the entire agency goes through this training–whether they want to or not. With sessions throughout the year, everyone gets up on that stage in front of a microphone and hopes for the best. Some learn that they are funnier than they imagined, others really get to test how quickly they can think on their feet and react to an audience while others learn that nothing can be as intimidating after getting up on a stage by yourself and attempting to be funny. Some of the veteran trainees have even gone on to perform in comedy shows, and some, like Peppercom’s co-founder and managing partner, Steve Cody, perform stand-up regularly.
Want to learn more about our comedy sessions in the workplace? Check out the article about our most recent training session (which I participated in) from the October issue of Inc. Magazine.