Do you think you could cope with a career in PR or marketing?

Talk to any PR professional or marketer about a typical day at the office and you’re likely to get the same response: “No two days are ever the same”. While it might sound cliched, it’s one of the things that most attracts graduates to careers in this field.

From my own experience, I’d say that it truly is a great thing if you’re looking for variety in your work life – but it also means that you have to be able to adapt, adjust your train of thought at a moment’s notice and hit the ground running on any number of wide-ranging tasks.

One moment you might be knee-deep in the brief for a customer case study and the next you’ll be sourcing additional information on an unrelated news item for a journalist with a deadline.

You have to be orgainsed and know what really needs to take priority, but you also have to leave yourself enough time in the week to respond to last minute requests and deal with urgent issues. Knowing your deadlines is important but sticking to them is crucial.

It can be exciting and equally stressful but its variety is the thing that ensures its practioners continue to enjoy what they do year after year.

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Why is it so important for marketers to Google themselves and their brands?

How often do you Google yourself? Is it something that you’ve ever done? If you manage a brand online (and your personal profile counts for all intents and purposes) it’s something that you should be doing at least once in a while. It might seem vain and like a complete waste of time but I’d argue that it is anything but.

An online reputation is something that precedes you: as a PR professional if you’re pitching for new business or as a marketer if you’re spreading the word about a new product or service. It might seem like it’s impossible to control, but keep a beady eye on the first few pages of Google and you might be able to have more of an impact than you think.

Timely responses are the key. To give you a bad example from my own experience, I Googled myself very recently and not only found what I expected to be there (my Twitter profile, this blog, my LinkedIN profile and my contact details on clients’ press releases), I also discovered that I had been cited as an expert by web design agency Pure Innovations in an article about SEO:

Web design agency Pure Innovation referenced my SEO advice on their own site without my knowledge

The quotes came from a blog I wrote while I was working with digital agency Coast Digital. While it’s not a problem in this instance that they’ve referenced me without my consent (I’d rather they did that than simply pinch my words of wisdom), I would have liked to gain a backlink to the original article for some valuable “link juice” in exchange.

Considering this article was published in October of last year and I knew nothing about it until this week, I was very fortunate that it was a glowing endorsement. Had it been negative, I would have been completely unaware and it might have damaged my reputation a long time before I was able to do anything about it.

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The general election 2010 and how it will be covered online

So, Gordon Brown is on his way to visit the Queen this morning to ask permission to call a general election. As expected, the topic has dominated many of today’s early Twitter conversations and already has its own hashtag (#ge2010), courtesy of BBC technology correspondent Rory Cellan-Jones.

It seems that it’s going to be very difficult to avoid hearing and reading about this particular general election thanks to social media. As one Twitter contact of mine (PR professional and blogger, @JonClements) puts it,

@BeccaJW: Imagine there’ll be much nonsense to share in the coming weeks.

The political online development projects have already begun, with a WebUser article from this morning pointing us to “Slap a politician online“. A colleague of mine at Coast Digital, head of creative Jamil Shehadeh, has also provided an interesting take on how the design of the top parties’ websites might influence voters.

While this election might not be won or lost online, it’s certainly going to have a big part to play when it comes to public perception and “buzz”.

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