Benefits of a digital résumé, strong press photos, more

Why are rich-media résumés a good idea for PR pros?

Digital résumés

Why are rich-media résumés a good idea for PR pros?

PR work is inherently dynamic, and today's portfolio items go beyond the mounted news clips of yesteryear, says Pierce Resler, marketing director at VisualCV.com.

“Hiring managers and client prospects are looking for validation of new-media skills, including multimedia campaigns, podcasts, blogging, and viral videos,” she adds.

A digital résumé allows you to incorporate these items alongside traditional, text-based résumé content.

“There is no need to ditch your paper résumé altogether,” explains Resler. “But it's a good idea to establish a professional online profile for consistent presentation of your personal brand that you can link to from anywhere you have a digital footprint – e-mail signature, Facebook, LinkedIn, PRSA profile, blog, or agency Web site bio.”

Whether on a job search, networking, or proposing to prospects, Resler says an online résumé with relevant portfolio items further highlights your PR abilities.

Social media

Should social media be incorporated into all PR work?

“Social media contains both promise and dangerous pitfalls for brands and their agencies,” notes Blake Cahill, SVP of marketing at Visible Technologies. “Before diving in, brands and companies need to evaluate whether they are really ready.”

It's important to begin by assessing how the company is listening to or engaging with its customers and critics.

“If your client is struggling to listen through existing channels, and if their existing marketing programs are tired and not delivering ROI, social media monitoring and engagement are not a panacea,” Cahill warns.

Social media programs should be an extension of your client's current customer-listening and interaction programs, he adds.

“Your client's customers are most likely interacting with social media,” Cahill says. “But unless the client is ready, you should counsel against rushing in.”

Photos

What is the key to getting a good press photo?

Good PR often depends on your ability to regulate your image to the outside world. A fundamental of this effort is to get a simple press photo.

“Each key executive at your company should have three press photos,” says David Reeve, manager of marketing and PR for WebVisible.

Each of the three images should serve a different audience and format, he adds. An executive photo session can range in price from several hundred dollars to several thousand, but it's not always necessary to pay top dollar. Search Craigslist for affordable photographers.

“It is important to have a casual photo, a business profile photo, and one that is unique or reflective of the company culture,” Reeve adds. “And there should be a mix of vertical and horizontal shots, so you are pre-pared to have your photo fill an equally sized space.”

Send your questions to: toolbox@prweek.com. Please contact Beth Krietsch if you are interested in contributing to PR Toolbox or to suggest ideas for future columns.

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