Superstar DJs Here We Go

Carving out a career in something you love can be hard so it was encouraging to hear from two PR guest lecturers in this week’s CIEMAS class who have done just that.

Nikki McNeil and Clare Dover run Global Publicity, a leading independent PR agency for music, festivals and events based London. Both self confessed music junkies, Nikki and Clare have been working together for around five years and handle PR for electronic music acts and some of the world’s best known international music festivals including Berlinfest in Germany, Snowbombing in Austria and Exit in Serbia.

As most of our CIEMAS class will agree, it was hard enough to get our heads around just one UK music festival, but Nikki and Clare are experts in global music industries, which is no mean feat. Their roles involve everything you’d expect in the PR mix­ – planning, strategy, writing, meeting deadlines –plus artist liaison, hanging out with clients, travelling and watching gigs. So far so glamorous, but they hastened to point out that the long hours, pressure to keep on top of their game and deal with crises at a moment’s notice are the tough parts of the job that are often overlooked.

How did they start out? Nikki originally had her sights set on a career in radio but she got a taste for the music industry after cutting her teeth on the Manchester and Liverpool club scenes. After graduating, Nikki took a job as a record company receptionist and worked her way up the ladder before setting up Global PR in 2007. Likewise, Clare interned for three months at various record companies after graduating before landing a full time role at a record company.

Their advice? Intern, intern, intern: It’s a great way to get experience and work out what you love doing, but beware of anyone who asks you to work for free for more than three months.

Best bits? Travelling all over the world. Meeting people. Doing something you love.

Worst bits? The music industry is very male dominated so females do have to work harder, shout louder and perform better than their male counterparts. Thankfully, things are improving, though.

Work Experience at Souter PR

They say a change is as good as a rest, so when reading week arrived I jumped at the chance of two days work experience at Cheshire based Souter PR. Headed up by Director Sue Souter, the team of three look after PR for a variety of food and drink, legal and B2B clients and they have recently launched their Content Academy, which helps businesses become better producers of their own content.

I arrived at the office just as news of Wonga’s feature film ‘12 Stories’ was breaking.  The film was the moneylender’s own PR attempt to dispel the company’s negative image, released on the same day that Wonga and other payday lenders were due to face questioning by MPs about their business practices. Cue lively discussion in the office on the subject, not least because Director Sue Souter and Account Director Kirsty Hall were due to deliver a pitch to a business cash advance firm that very week.  The importance of being news savvy is drummed into us as PR students and that morning’s events really put it into context.

From then on I was kept busy writing press releases about World Record breaking football matches and dental litigation cases before compiling media lists and researching trends in the hospitality sector for an imminent pitch­ – I couldn’t have asked for more variety.

It was really interesting to see Sue put a pitch together for the business cash advance client. She drew on current attitudes towards moneylending and issues in the market to show the client how Souter PR could help improve its reputation and strengthen its position in the financial sector. It was an invaluable way to see how much work goes into creating a pitch and I could see how the work we are doing in PRCTP this term translates into agency life.

Sue describes PR as storytelling and two days with her team opened my eyes to the variety of ways they do this for clients daily. I learned lots and their friendly advice has put me on the right track for my future career in PR. Special thanks goes to Junior Account Exec Chidi for explaining the finer points of dental negligence and her never ending supply of sweets!

Sony take over OXO tower for PS4 launch

As Sony and Microsoft launch their new PS4 and Xbox one consoles, competition for sales is fierce. As Christmas is approaching, I thought this was a great example of PR from Sony: The brand used the first two symbols of the OXO tower, which also represent the buttons on their game pad, and added the last two. As these buttons are so recognisable, when they are lit up at night, the first thing people will think is: Playstation! The prominent tower is a landmark in London and overlooks the Thames, so will be see by many!

o oo ooo

See the full article at: http://prexamples.com/2013/11/sony-takeover-oxo-tower-for-ps4-launch-stunt/

 

First “Get PRofessional” guest lecture – Wed 13 November 2013

MMUPR’s new series of Get PRofessional guest lectures starts this week on Wednesday 13th November 2013 at 5.30 p.m. in Lecture Theatre G35 with a double bill from two of our MSc International Public Relations graduates who are now working at the Citypress PR agency in Manchester- Suzanne Armfield, Senior Account Executive, and Joanne Tarkowksi, Account Executive:

Lecture 1: PR student to PR professional: how to get a start in PR
Lecture 2: Meet Citypress – how it works and what we do

These guest lectures are open to students on PR courses or studying PR as an option or research topic, or simply interested in PR, at ALL levels – undergraduate and postgraduate, and to PR staff.

Each week will feature a guest speaker sharing their experience of a career in PR and giving tips on getting started, or giving an insight into how PR works in practice to supplement students’ theoretical knowledge.

We are planning to have an opportunity after each lecture for networking with the speakers, PR staff and PR students. Diary dates for the rest of Term 1:

Wed 27 November 2013 5.30 – 7.00 p.m. G34 Speaker to be confirmed

Wed 11 December 2013 5.30 – 7.00 p.m. G34 Nyree Hughes – PR and Social Media Manager, Access Advertising – Working in a multi-service agency: the role of a PR and Digital Media specialist

The two final sessions will be PR skills workshops offering a masterclass in PR practice skills and in job search and application and interview skills to prepare students for looking for that first break into the PR profession.