Tag Archives: PRSSA

Connecting with Franco

“You can only know where you’re going, if you know where you’ve been.” That saying can have different meanings for people in all walks of life, but it also holds true for those embarking on the job and internship search. As any recent hire from our office will tell you, the job market is all about connecting with businesses and networking with other professionals in the field. And there’s no better way to get to know a company than to immerse yourself in their daily routines and connect with the people who already work there. After all, you can’t know which direction you want to take in your career if you haven’t explored it in the past. Luckily for those entering the job market, there are a multitude of ways to find out more about a potential workplace and find the right career path.

Tour our office with a student group

Touring an office with a large student group, whether it’s classmates or fellow PRSSA members, is a great way to get to know a company, their clients, and of course connecting with employees working in various industries.

My first visit to Franco was on a tour of agencies in Detroit with Michigan State’s PRSSA group. The tour gave me great benchmarks for what agencies in the city were looking for in potential candidates. While I didn’t have the experience Franco was looking for at the time, I was able to build my experience and keep the agency in mind when I started my job search after graduation.

These group tours are often the easiest for companies to accommodate and give you maximum exposure in the shortest amount of time. What’s key about these group opportunities is making sure you stand out. Bring your resume, introduce yourself to the presenters and guides after the tour and don’t forget to thank the busy professionals taking time out of their day to show you around.

Senior Account Executive Andrea Kenski talks about a recent Salvation Army campaign with students from Eastern Michigan University PRSSA

Franco Senior Account Executive Andrea Kenski talks about a recent Salvation Army campaign with students from Eastern Michigan University PRSSA

Shadow one of our employees

While job shadows can often be the most difficult for companies to accommodate, they can be a great source for building a strong relationship with an employee at a company you’re interested in. It is also the best way to get an understanding of a company’s culture and the services the agency offers to its clients.

In college, it was my job shadow experiences that helped me gain an understanding of the difference between corporate communications, and working at a public relations agency vs. an advertising agency. I not only had the opportunity to start connecting with people, that to this day I’ve maintained relationships with, but it helped me decide what type of communications internships I wanted to pursue further while in school.

One-on-one meetings

Like most people in the communications industry, I LOVE coffee. And I love nothing more than to share my experiences from school and professional life over a good latte. Whether our allegiance is to the green and white or the maize and blue (or any other school around Michigan), my colleagues all come from different backgrounds and have unique life experiences to share with students new to college or even recent graduates. We love to share our lessons learned, where we’ve been, and how we’ve gotten to where we are today.

Connecting with us at a job fair or networking event

As a company trying to attract top talent from schools around Michigan and beyond, we want students to know who we are, just as much as they want us to know them. A great way to get to know more about a company and the people representing it, is to stop by our booth space at a career fair. Whether you’re a freshman or a graduating senior, it makes our job much easier when we’re able to put a face to a name. Make sure you’ve brushed up on your elevator pitch and don’t be afraid to ask questions and check out these three tips for acing job fairs. And, trust me, we do remember you when you make an effort to get to know us!

Franco Account Executive Erica Swoish connecting with PRSSA students across Michigan at a recent career fair

Franco Account Executive Erica Swoish shows off some client swag at a recent career fair for PRSSA students across Michigan

If you’re interested in visiting us, meeting one of our Franco team members, or just taking a peek around the office, let us know! You can call our main line or reach out to me directly for details.

Erica Swoish is an account executive and the student relations coordinator at Franco Public Relations Group. You can reach her at (313) 567-5014 or swoish@franco.com. Follow her on Twitter @eswoish.

 

Franco On the Town – March Edition

In March, the Franco team could be found learning, engaging and traveling.

Tina K. and Elizabeth attended the EdelTrust Breakfast to discuss the results from this year’s Trust Barometer. The 2016 Edelman Trust Barometer surveyed more than 33,000 respondents in 28 countries to examine trust in government, business, nongovernmental organizations, media and more.

EdelTrust Breakfast

Erica, Mary and Andrea welcomed Eastern Michigan University’s PRSSA to Detroit for a tour of the Franco office.

EMU PRSSA day

Team Franco survived Daylight Saving Time with a little help from our trusty friends at Starbucks.

Daylight Saving Time Starbucks

Franco celebrated St. Patrick’s Day with an Irish themed lunch and lots of green.

St. Patricks Day

While the team celebrated St. Patrick’s Day, Tina S. snapped this perfect picture from the balcony of Hayworth-Adams Hotel while she attended the Western Automotive Press Association gala with the Steel Market Development Institute.

Western Automotive Press Association gala

Tina K. moderated The Tale of Our City: PR’s Role in Detroit’s Revitalization panel hosted by Wayne State University and Michigan State University.

Tale of Our City

While Tina moderated, Erica set up shop at the internship fair hosted by Wayne State University PRSSA at The Tale of Our City to speak to college students about Franco.

Wayne State University internship fair

Sarah and Marie made an appearance at Vinotecca’s monthly wine dinner, featuring Girard Winery, where they learned about different types of wines and food pairings.

Vinotecca wine dinner featuring Girard Winery

Lauren and Ann Marie helped IBAS Brewery host Yelp Detroit for a brewing event. Guests spent the day brewing a Belgian Tripel and in just a few short months, the 9 gallons of man-made beer will be ready for at-home enjoyment.

IBAS Brewery

Pat interviewed Jeff Zaleski of PricewaterhouseCoopers  at the Belle Isle Aquarium for the Belle Isle Conservancy Grand Prixmiere welcome video.

Belle Isle Aquarium

Andrea coordinated The Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services Director, Chuck McDougall interview on CW50’s Street Beat.

CW50 Street Beat

Mary ended the month by attending her first IABC Detroit event, The Power of Storytelling. Not only did she learn a thing about what makes a good story, but she found time to live tweet the event from Franco’s Twitter account.

IABC

Finding value in an internship

Our current interns, Erin and Dan, are busily working on their projects for the week.

You just graduated from college, maybe even summa cum laude. But, if you don’t have experience in your field, finding a job can be a daunting task. The easiest way to get that much needed experience is to find an internship. In fact, it’s best if you have a few!

In public relations, interning at a nonprofit, corporation or agency will give you very different experiences.  If you are searching for your first internship, check out 4 tips for breaking into the world of public relations.

At Franco, we look for interns who are at least juniors in college and have already had a couple internships.  It’s an invaluable experience that could lead to future employment. It’s the longest job interview you’ll ever have – take it from two previous interns!  Here are a few skills you’ll pick up while interning with Franco:

Learn how to manage your time

Agency work is very fast paced, and you’ll rarely have down time. Franco interns have the opportunity to take part in agency and account team meetings, visit clients, sit in on conference calls, draft news releases and build media lists. A Franco internship is not a “coffee internship.” You’re given real responsibilities and serve on account teams, which is why and how you’ll learn to manage your time.

Improve your spoken communication skills

As Michelle Zdrodowski noted in her blog on interpersonal communication, sometimes it is better to pick up the phone than it is to send an email. If you need to provide urgent information, sometimes it’s quicker to make a call than to type it out. Phone calls are also more personable, so it’s easier to convey your message.  At Franco you get to talk to a lot of people — clients, media and suppliers.

Improve your written communication skills

A huge part of public relations is communicating a message through the written word. Our interns have the opportunity to draft media materials including press releases, media advisories, executive biographies and speaking points. Franco’s experienced account team members edit and provide feedback.

Build relationships with the media

Franco interns have the opportunity to contact the media with client news.  While it can be nerve-racking the first few times, after you’ve had some practice it comes naturally.  And you always have Franco’s media relations experts guiding you along the way. From creating a media list and pitching the news to attending TV segments and clipping the results, you’ll see how media relations work from start to finish.

What do you think are the most valuable things to learn from an internship? We’d love hear your thoughts.

Joe Ferlito is a senior account executive at Franco Public Relations Group. You can reach him at (313) 567-5031 or ferlito@franco.com.

Marie Stawasz is an assistant account executive at Franco Public Relations Group. You can reach her at (313) 567-5201 or stawasz@franco.com. Follow Marie on twitter @MarieStawasz.

4 tips for breaking into the world of public relations

A resume should include a bulleted list of your education, work experience and (when appropriate) personal interests. Photo Credit: Flickr.

You’re fresh out of college with a degree in public relations. Now you need a job. Public Relations is all about connecting people, but do you know how to connect yourself? Scoring your dream job doesn’t have to be hard as you think. Here are a few tips that will help you stand out in that pile of resumes.

1. Construct a fluid resume. A resume should include bulleted points of your education, work experience and (when appropriate) personal interests. Be descriptive and use action words. Think outside of the box when listing your experience. If you were involved in any projects or programs outside of school or work that are relevant to your field, be sure to list them.

2. Draft a cover letter, and edit it thoroughly. Think of a cover letter as your opportunity to demonstrate your written communication skills and your personality.  Be clear and concise, explaining why you are contacting the employer and why they should care. Be specific to the position you’re applying for. Expand upon points in your resume. And proofread the letter carefully to catch any typos. Since PR is all about details, a typo in your cover letter could cost you the interview.

3. Provide work samples. The proof is in the pudding. If you present a potential employer with samples of the work you produce, the more likely you are to grab their attention. Provide press releases you’ve written and subsequent placements they may have resulted from your outreach. If you have not had an opportunity to conduct outreach on your own, provide writing samples from college classes.

4. Apply for internships. Experience is possibly the most important part of a job search. Employers want to know the individual they hire has practical experience in their industry, and the best way to gain that experience is through an internship. Apply for more than one. You’ll learn about different aspects of PR at a nonprofit than you would at an agency or in a corporate setting.

Now that you know how to land your dream job, are you looking for an internship? We’re looking for two summer interns. Learn more on our Facebook page.

Marie Stawasz is an assistant account executive at Franco Public Relations Group. You can reach her at (313) 567-5201 or stawasz@franco.com. Follow Marie on twitter @MarieStawasz.