Not all habits are bad, but there are definitely some worth avoiding. When it comes to PR specifically, image is everything. Although it is nearly impossible to elude all negative stereotypes, understanding the effects that bad habits can cause will aid in the improving of the PR image.
Here are some PR habits to break, or better yet, never get started with:
- Giving clients unrealistic expectations: While this one can be hard to avoid, it is the most important one to pay attention to. PR professionals are only as good as their word. If they do not live up to it, it is damaging to both them and their clients’ reputations. It is important to set realistic deadlines and stick with them.
- Using empty words and phrases: Adding fillers into your writing can come off as being exaggerative and highly cliché. In the end, they add nothing to your story. It is much more beneficial to write with some substance and originality.
- Pitching across every social media platform in existence: Social media has proven to be a good outlet to reach the right personnel. However, there is no need to message a journalist the same thing on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Try to research how the individual would like to be contacted rather than bombarding them and turning them away.
- Sending lengthy press releases: Most individuals do not want to write or read more than they have to, which is why a short pitch will often times do the trick. Sending drawn-out press releases too often will only overload the receiver’s inbox and cause “real” news to be disregarded.
- Failing to listen: We’ve all been called out by our moms for not listening to her when she talks, but imagine being yelled at by a potential client. If you do not actively listen to what they have to say, you might not have any clients at the end of the day.
- Being one dimensional: Everyone has their likes and dislikes, but when you are involved in PR, it is important to be knowledgeable in many different areas. Avoid being uninformed and pay attention to those trending topics and world events that are constantly flooding your screen.