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What is a Public Relations Consultants?

What is a Public Relations Consultants?
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The image and perception of a company is vital in today's business world. Public relations plays a crucial role in the development of a company's image, but also in their run-of-the-mill day to day operations. To better understand the role of a public relations consultant, it is important to understand what public relations is.

What is Public Relations?

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"Public relations is the total management of communications between an entity and its publics. It encompasses all elements of an organization's annual plan, including all media relations, public relations, and events management"

Public Relations is a process that involves trade-offs where an organization is concerned with image and perception. The publics have different needs which require a response be made by the organization to satisfy these needs. The needs and desire of the individual are something companies must pay attention too as they are affected by the company's actions.
Public relations consultants combine all the necessary elements to produce a successful outcome. These elements include management, advertising and sales, public affairs, marketing strategy, customer service and technology. The goal of this combination is to display the image and perception of an organization in the most favorable way for its audience or target market.

Who are Public Relations Consultants?

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"Public relations consultants are individuals who have the skills, training, knowledge and experience to effectively guide an organization in its public relations efforts"

A public relations consultant is a professional who has been trained in public relations and handles public relations for businesses. The responsibilities of a public relations consultant include creating strategies to develop relationships between the company and their audiences, presenting the image of the organization to its audience, managing business relationships with clients and customers, providing guidance with media relations, and providing consultation on various administrative tasks that may be needed for smooth operations.

What are the skills and qualifications of a Public Relations Consultant?

"In the PR industry these skills are generally measured in terms of a candidate's years of experience, training and education, and level of certification granted by the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA)"
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In order to be qualified to be a public relations consultant one must have certain skills. These are:
-Education: One should have a minimum of a bachelor's degree or higher. The degree gained is typically in communication, marketing or business but can vary with other professional fields.
-Experience: The more experience the better. A minimum of four (4) years' work history is required to qualify as a public relations consultant.
-Training: Certain training measures are necessary for those who wish to become public relations consultants. These are usually based on written tests and a practical examination. These tests include things such as knowledge of the PR industry, ethics and law, interpersonal skills and various presentations skills.
-Certification: There are also certain organizations that grant certification to those who have obtained a certain level of experience or training. The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) is one of them. There are three levels of certifications: Intern, Practitioner and Fellow.

Salary Outlook for Public Relations Consultants

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The field of public relations is expected to continue grow in the next few years. The average salary for a PR professional is $55,000 - $77,000. This can range depending on where you work, what kind of experience you have and if you are certified. If a PR professional has completed an internship or practicum and is working on his or her certification it may be possible to earn up to $80,000 annually.
The median salary for a public relations professional was $45,000 in 2010.
According to recent published reports, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that jobs in PR will grow by 21% through 2026. This is considered above average compared to other jobs that may be available in the future.
The median salary for a PR consultant is $45,000 as of 2011. The mean annual salary is $72,000 and the median expected salary is $55,000.
The highest salary for a PR consultant is $95,000.

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