My PR Experience: In-House


I've pursued a career in PR since the summer after my freshman year of college. I had heard about what PR was, and knew that I wanted to work in fashion, and from there knew PR is what I wanted to do. Since that first summer I've had 5 internships and a few post-grad jobs all in the PR industry: in-house, boutique agency, mid-size agency.


Over the course of my time at college, I didn't have a mentor that guided me through studying communications and pursuing internships in that field, so I was out there learning on my own. From figuring out which classes to take, what types of internships to pursue, and even finding that first job post-grad I was out there figuring out alone. For those who may be in the same boat as I was, I'm sharing my experiences: how I got the internships / jobs, what I did while I was there, and how it prepared me for to be the PR professional I am today.



MY IN-HOUSE EXPERIENCE

In my 6 years pursuing PR I've worked in-house, at boutique agencies, and mid-size agencies. Each experience was similar, but also very different. I learned what I did like and didn't like about PR. Twice I've worked in-house for fashion brads: Christian Siriano and Anthropologie, as an internship & a full-time job respectively. Both were amazing experiences and great learning opportunities in the world of fashion and media (plus the free samples are a great bonus).


Christian Siriano, Summer PR Intern 2018


How did I get the position?

I was offered this internship after connecting on LinkedIn with a bunch of PR professionals who worked with luxury designers. I reached out to these new connections asking to learn about their role, their experience, and if they could share any information on the brand's internship applications - one of those conversations was with the PR Manager for Christian Siriano.


From there I sent her my resume, and a few days later had a phone interview. I walked her through my experience, why I want to work in fashion, and essentially shed some light on my knowledge of the fashion world.


What was my role?

I was a part-time PR intern for three months. Unfortunately they didn't pay, so I was working another part-time job the other days. The bulk of my work was dealing with samples.


Whether we were shipping out gowns to celebrities in LA for their next event, or running down 5th Ave with a garment bag weighting heavier than me to a photoshoot, I spent a lot of time getting to know those lovely gowns.


I worked with two other interns and together we helped ensure order in their sample closet, as well as stock for the Christian Siriano store, assisted the sales team on Market Day, and helped out with clients on personal fittings.


The role was more VIP Relations as opposed to the typical PR experience of pitching and press releases.


How was it helpful?

It taught me a lot about the VIP Relations sect of PR, and knowing who's who in the fashion world. I learned about samples, about stylists + celebrity dressing opportunities, and merchandising the showroom.


Do I recommend it?

If you are interested in the luxury fashion side of PR or VIP Relations I think this is a great opportunity. You learn how to create those connections with stylists, how to manage samples, and overall understand the fashion industry more. It's not the typical campaign building and pitching PR experience you may expect when you first hear "PR."


Anthropologie, Temp. PR Assistant 2019


How did I get the position?

I applied for this job through an online job site called StyleCareers. They were urgently hiring and looking to bring in a PR Assistant to help out with their upcoming work.


The process was pretty quick and straightforward. I had about a 20-minute phone interview, and was brought in for a second round to meet the team and I was hired.


What was my role?

As a PR Assistant my main role was managing samples + monitoring and pitching for the Anthropologie + line that had just launched.


Samples were constantly sent to editors and celebs, so making sure we received all the right pieces, and determining whether the pieces were still available on the site to be sold was a big role. I learned the merchandise both fashion, and homeware very well, and got to tap into my creativity when helping to build out events we attended.


With their recent launch we were getting tons of coverage, so monitoring for any incoming top tier hits, and product requests were a big thing to keep track of as well for the brand's archive.


How was it helpful?

It was really helpful in-house learning experience. The job is not as hectic as it normally is in an agency because you are dedicating your entire time to just one brand, but you do have those bumps that need your attention every once in a while. It was great to understand the media relations and sample management process, which is vital for fashion + in-house PR.


Do I recommend it?

100% recommend it. I learned a lot, and the ladies I work with were super sweet and willing to teach me anything and everything that was happening. Working in-house is a great way to get the lay of the land of PR and not have to stress about time management and balancing a large amount of projects at once.


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Stay tuned - I'll be sharing more about my boutique and mid-size agency experiences over the next few weeks, along with more insights into the world of PR. If you have any specific questions you'd like me to address next, leave them in the comments below!

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