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What Does a PR Person Do?

Find out about the types of jobs you could pursue in public relations. Read on to learn more about career options along with education and salary information.

What is a PR Person?

In the field of public relations, you work to create favorable press and publicity for an organization or individual. Duties may include overseeing advertising and press releases, responding to the press and scheduling interviews. You must prepare their client for interacting with the press or public, and make sure their work remains in public awareness. Two possible career options in this field include public relations manager and public relations specialist. The table below outlines the general requirements for these career options.

Public Relations ManagerPublic Relations Specialist
Degree Required Bachelor's degree Bachelor's Degree
Educational Field of Study Public Relations
Communications
English
Journalism
Public Relations
Business
Journalism
Communications
English
Key Responsibilities Writes press releases and provides information to the media; helps clients communicate with the public; creates advertising programs Writes speeches; arranges interviews; writes press releases; helps clients communicate with the public; evaluates promotional material
Job Growth (2018-2028) 8% growth (for all public relations and fundraising managers)* 6% growth*
Median Salary (2018) $114,800* $60,000*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Are the Job Duties of a PR Person?

In the field of public relations, you increase public awareness of your clients and their endeavors. You work to create favorable press and publicity for an organization or an individual. As your clients' spokesperson, you often write speeches or promotional press releases. You schedule television, newspaper, magazine or radio interviews on behalf of your clients or make these appearances yourself. As a service to them, you arrange speaking engagements, respond to inquiries or requests for information and instruct them on proper methods of communication to the press and public.

What Education Do I Need to Become a PR Person?

A bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university is typically an ideal place to start training for entry into the field. Many schools offer public relations, communications and journalism majors that explain the details, expectations and necessities of the profession. You might concentrate your studies toward specific types of clients, such as government or business.

Your bachelor's curriculum should include courses in political science, sociology, creative writing and advertising. Additionally, you'll study mathematics, foreign language, social science, English and humanities subjects. Professional PR classes might include communication, journalism, desktop publishing, public relations principles and advertising campaigns.

What Is the Job Outlook?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) expected jobs for public relations specialists to increase between 2018 and 2028, predicting a 6% growth rate (www.bls.gov). Although the BLS stated that competition for entry-level positions and the demand for qualified PR people would be a factor in employment, you'll increase your chances of gaining entry into the field with specialized skills, such as a proficiency with social networking tools, experience with international business and fluency in more than one language.

How Much Could I Earn?

The BLS stated that PR specialists earned a median annual salary of $60,000 in May 2018. The highest wage-earners that year included professionals working for the federal government, though these industry did not have a high level of employment in this occupation. The majority of workers specialized in advertising, public relations and related services.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

Related careers include meeting/convention/event planners and editors. Meeting, convention and event planners manage all elements needed to execute an event, such as budgeting and guest lists. Editors proofread and improve publications before release. A bachelor's degree is a common education requirement for these careers.