Connor joins EAST VILLAGE. as Senior PR Account Executive, bolstering the accounts team along with Olivia and Demi. In his 60 Seconds With, he shares his experience in PR, how he’s navigating a changing industry, and advice for how to sharpen those PR skills.
How did you get into PR?
I’d been vaguely aware of the role of PR played, but it wasn’t until I went to university to study media and communications that I really got my head around the possibilities of PR – and I was hooked! In my third year I wrote my dissertation on the use of emotion in media campaigns and then set off into the wide world to search for the start of my PR career which resulted in an internship at a Birmingham-based agency.
Tell us a bit more about your role!
As Senior PR Account Executive, my task is to deliver the day-to-day results for clients. Supported by my fellow PR pro, Olivia, we brainstorm ideas, draft content, liaise with journalists, and keep clients content with consistent coverage.
What is your favourite part of the job?
There’s no feeling like seeing a piece of coverage get published! However, I also like seeing a client journey through from start to finish. To be there for the conception of an idea, then planning and executing it, to then be able to get tangible results in the form of digital and print coverage is so satisfying.
What’s your go-to coffee order?
A flat white. The perfect coffee! Usually with oat milk.
Here’s a divisive question… dogs or cats?
100% dogs! I like a cat, but I can’t shake the feeling that they don’t like me.
What are your top three marketing tools that you can’t live without?
Roxhill is a non-negotiable for me. As senior account exec, a good outreach tool is key! I’m also a huge advocate for Google Trends. You can find me trawling the data for new angles and developing news stories. Finally, Agility is crucial for keeping on top of our inbound coverage and making sure we’re aware of all news stories involving our clients!
What is one top tip that you give every client about PR?
I’d ask every client (and every business considering whether they need PR) to step back and look at their company from an outsider’s perspective. Understanding what’s newsworthy, where there’s a story to dig into, and how your company appears is crucial to understanding what we offer and where we can take your business.
What is your PR trend prediction for 2023 and beyond?
Artificial intelligence has been a hot topic for most of 2023 as it becomes more impressive and, most importantly, more accessible. Despite all the talk of AI replacing jobs, I think for journalism and PR it’s really going to put a spotlight on emotional and human stories in the media. I think those irreplicable, coincidental narratives that can only come through human collaboration and experience are going to become much more prominent.
Who would your dream client be and why?
While I think there’s tonnes of exciting brands in tech, my dream client would be London-based jewellery brand, The Great Frog. Not only because I’m a huge fan of their products, but because they’re a business with human stories at the core. Whether it’s their history in the music scene, their striking branding, or their familial heritage, they’re a PR dream when it comes to product placement, interviews, and features!
Do you have any advice for anyone wanting to get into the industry?
My advice would be to jump on as many opportunities as you can! So much of my own skillset was developed through trial and error and dipping my toes into a range of tasks, so broadening your experience and nailing down your transferrable skills will give you a great head start when it comes to looking for roles. It’s also important to do some PR work on yourself! Whether that’s networking, attending events, or being active on LinkedIn, get your name out there and you never know who you’ll end up meeting.