As I prepared for my first week as a Public Relations Intern for Momentum Communications Group, I wasn’t sure what to expect.
I knew I was about to enter a fast-paced environment that would require a lot of hard work and quick learning. While I’m just a few weeks in, my suspicions are already confirmed as I have been rapidly introduced to the exciting world of PR. While I am certainly relying on the skills I’ve acquired in the classroom and through previous internships, another life experience has also proven useful. Prior to joining Momentum, I had worked as a hostess in a neighborhood restaurant for several years. While I greatly enjoyed my time there, I never thought that it would translate into valuable tools for my Public Relations career. However, as I have come to see, a successful PR firm is not very different from a popular restaurant, especially when the customer is forefront.
If you are anything like me, a trip to your favorite restaurant includes excitement over sampling new menu options, daring to order creative drinks, and enjoying an overall memorable dining experience. Only the most successful restaurants can master the unique formula that will not only have critics raving but also ensure guests are eager to return. In a similar way, successful Public Relations requires a unique strategy of creativity and boldness to deliver memorable content and keep the audience intrigued. While your local bistro is probably not the first thing you think of when considering PR tips, these two industries actually share several best practices. Here are a few:
Establishing Effective Relationships
Just like you would expect to be greeted with a smile and a friendly face by a restaurant hostess, clients expect and deserve cordial conversations, emails and meetings. PR is dependent upon client/team collaboration and a pleasant approach will create the foundation for such a relationship. Open and direct communication can make all the difference in accurately convening key information.
The Importance of Buzz
It seems as though the second a trendy new restaurant opens or the latest dessert craze hits, the whole world rushes to be the first on the scene. These early birds are not just trying the items for themselves, but are also blogging, posting and uploading images and reviews to the Internet, creating discussions and establishing industry standards. In a similar way, PR professionals must act as trend spotters in order to generate relevant discussions related to the client and their top priorities. By remaining constantly in the know and connected to a range of media outlets, a successful PR team can spot potential opportunities or emerging trends that will benefit their clients.
Presentation and Attention to Detail
With the invention of Instagram and the resulting #foodie, who can blame chefs for wanting every dish to be picture perfect? Presentation plays a key role in restaurant profitability and can make the difference between just a good meal and a truly unforgettable experience. Much like these eye-catching garnishments, details can be everything in the world of Public Relations. The precision and clarity of a proposal, pitch or a program is reliant upon keen observation and attention to even the smallest of factors. Providing this special attention will assure accuracy and prove your commitment to the client.
Restaurants are only successful if their guests leave satisfied and eager to visit again. While buzz or special offerings may initially get patrons in the door, only quality products and service can guarantee their return. The same is true in PR; the only way to assure client satisfaction is by consistently delivering overall quality services. By regularly communicating on expectations, objectives and results, the client can remain in the know so that satisfaction and positive outcomes can be achieved. Just as you would visit you favorite food spots over and over, a satisfied client will come again and may even become a “regular.”
By Bianca Cardaci