What do interns do? A look into PR internships
The world of communications has certainly changed since I was an intern five years ago. Smaller brands were starting to see the true benefits of using social media and video was beginning to flourish as a communications tool.
We spoke to a group of interns and a couple of agencies that offer regular internships to find out the main tasks that interns are doing in 2017.
Company: HROC (Heightening Return On Communication)
Each year, HROC offers a one year-long internship to a University student currently completing a degree in a relevant discipline, including Marketing, Media or English. The paid internship is designed to fully immerse the student in the working life of Public Relations through a dedicated training programme that supports them in developing the real life skills required to succeed within the industry.
Throughout their placement, the intern gains all-round exposure into every aspect of public relations by completing specific tasks and projects that not only provide the student with responsibilities, offering a beneficial and worthwhile experience that they can build on, but also create tangible value for our clients.
All of our interns are entirely client facing, so complete daily job tasks that have a real effect and outcome. Supported by other members of the team, who are on hand to give daily support, advice and on the job training, the interns will liaise with clients each day, completing a range of job roles. These include preparing for, attending and partaking in client meetings, and drafting a range of content on behalf of clients such as press releases, blogs and features.
Whilst gaining experience in traditional PR tasks is essential, social media goes hand-in-hand, so our interns will also draft social media schedules and respond in real time to social engagements and relevant industry conversations on behalf of clients. The interns will work as part of a team to plan, create and host events, from product launches to retailer and dealer exhibitions.
At OneChocolate, we pride ourselves on providing the best platform for recent graduates looking to kick-start their career in PR and digital marketing. With our paid internships (you’d be surprised how many agencies don’t offer this), our interns are tasked with similar responsibilities as account executives. From pitching stories and seeding products to secure media coverage, creating social media content calendars and assisting with events, to attending coffee meetings with journalists, reporting coverage and conducting research for client meetings and new business pitches. The team fully-support our interns and provide weekly training sessions to develop and fast-track their knowledge and understanding of our industry.
Our newest recruit, Sabrina Bowen, has recently been promoted to Account Executive, here is her account of what it’s like to be an intern at OneChocolate:
“I’ve learned a vast amount in the two months I’ve been here. There are several great things about interning for OneChocolate, the support I have received from the team is one of them. I started having had only one month’s experience working in PR and I have been given a lot of training since starting here; I am now confident speaking to journalists, writing press releases, creating E-shots, learning about SEO and how to run a successful event, to name a few. Working here is fast-paced and demanding, but also very rewarding. Seeing your coverage published in print or seeing quality engagement online gives you a sense of achievement and shows you that your hard work is paying off.”
Intern: Jonathan Kerr, Whiteoaks
“Supporting the PR team with organisational tasks as well as working closely with the marketing team to bring in new clients. I am about to move into a Junior Account Executive role where I will support the team with call agendas, meetings and reporting on our progress and coverage to clients.”
Intern: Ashley Lennon, Maggie’s
“My main tasks were to create comprehensive databases of bloggers for the company, as well as being in charge of blogger outreach for our Glasgow and Edinburgh Culture crawls, as well as assisting with an upcoming project in Dundee.”
Intern: Mariela Petkova, Vauxhall
“My main role is to support all campaigns run by the consumer PR team and assist with any ad-hoc tasks in relation to them. We have diverse campaigns and all are equally important and require our dedication to ensure consistent media presence of the brand. I assist with car loans to journalists and social influencers, help with the organization of events such as Vauxhall Art Car Boot Fair and organize press trips as part of the sponsorship of the national football teams. Issuing press releases on certain channels, insuring that our online platforms are up-to-date and tracking coverage are also part of my main responsibilities. Vivaro on Tour is another big project that I am managing in collaboration with Independent Venue Week which aims to support British talent and help up-and-coming UK bands with their tours.”
Intern: Olivia Shalofsky, Direct Line Group
“Promoting and protecting Direct Line Group’s brands is my main task, and this obviously involves a number of smaller jobs that all make a difference. I am here to support my team in reaching their objectives. For example; sharing our coverage with the wider business means that we keep PR on the business agenda, and drawing on my own experiences to write stories brings to life why consumers need insurance. I spend a lot of my time completing tasks that allow me to identify trends and new opportunities, as well as developing tactics that will aid me in my future work. So far, I have spent a lot of time visiting various areas of the business, from the social team to consumer insights, to consolidate my knowledge and make sure I keep my work relevant to theirs.”
Intern: Alex Holt-Kulapalan, Dimoso
“Cliche I know, but I think PR is so varied that I’ve had no single main task. From writing press releases and bylines, to producing research on future tech and pitching to both UK and global outlets. I think my main task would be doing whatever is needed!”
Intern: Yana Miladinova, Red Setter
“As PR & Marketing intern, my main task is developing marketing and SEO plan to improve the reputation and visibility of Red Setter. I also manage the website, Twitter and LinkedIn.
Interested in what interns learnt on their first day in the role? Take a look at our previous blog – https://www.responsesource.com/blog/pr-interns-learn-first-day/