Want to have a writing portfolio in time for internship season?
In Public Relations (as well as many other professions) when talking with professionals, attending conferences or applying for internships, one thing that never fails to be mentioned is that the industry is in dire need of skilled writers. Potential employers are going to ask for a resume, a cover letter and maybe if you are lucky an interview but the most important thing you can show them in order to land that position is an impressive writing portfolio.
Internship season is quickly approaching. Here are some ideas on how you can brush up on your writing skills and start building your portfolio!
Invest in Yourself
Opportunities to gain experience are endless and can be found on and off campus. Actively seek ways to create opportunities for yourself and optimize the impact you can make with each one. As an anonymous author once said “Do something today, that your future self will thank you for.” Start building a portfolio with different types of writing like blog posts, new letters, and articles and try to get published!
Write as often as you can! Designate time for yourself to write everyday without interruption. With practice you will begin to develop clear, concise writing. Go by the acronym KISS, or keep it short and simple. Brush up on your grammar skills and basic writing principles, and trim the fat when necessary.
Know your Audience
Who are you to them? What questions are they going to be asking? How can you appeal to their diverse wants and needs? Good writers know how to grab the reader’s attention and keep it. They use real everyday words and make it easy and engaging to read. Whether you are reporting on an event or data you want to make the story come alive and a great way to do that is by making that connection to the reader.
Check your sources, and then check them again. Always conduct thorough investigations and confirm your facts with evidence. Building credibility is based on maintaining a balance of having expertise and relationships. Expertise shows you know everything and more about the subject matter. Building relationships makes people willing to listen and truly care about what you have to say.
Want to practice these skills or need some help finding inspiration? Take a break from studying and try out a few of these methods:
- Read newspapers to keep up to date on the industry, world news and other business related pieces
- Take and ask for feedback whenever you can
- Follow your favorite brands or companies on social media
- Write for the UF PRSSA blog or PRSSA national’s Progressions blog or Forum newspaper
Written by Darian Daniels; edited by Hannah Ross