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Become A Media Relations Specialist

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Working As A Media Relations Specialist

  • Getting Information
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Thinking Creatively
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Stressful

  • $43,909

    Average Salary

What Does A Media Relations Specialist Do

Public relations specialists create and maintain a favorable public image for the organization they represent. They design media releases to shape public perception of their organization and to increase awareness of its work and goals. 

Duties

Public relations specialists typically do the following:

  • Write press releases and prepare information for the media
  • Respond to information requests from the media
  • Help clients communicate effectively with the public
  • Help maintain their organization's corporate image and identity
  • Draft speeches and arrange interviews for an organization’s top executives
  • Evaluate advertising and promotion programs to determine whether they are compatible with their organization’s public relations efforts
  • Evaluate public opinion of clients through social media

Public relations specialists, also called communications specialists and media specialists, handle an organization’s communication with the public, including consumers, investors, reporters, and other media specialists. In government, public relations specialists may be called press secretaries. In this setting, workers keep the public informed about the activities of government officials and agencies.

Public relations specialists draft press releases and contact people in the media who might print or broadcast their material. Many radio or television special reports, newspaper stories, and magazine articles start at the desks of public relations specialists. For example, a press release might describe a public issue, such as health, energy, or the environment, and what an organization does concerning that issue.

Press releases are increasingly being sent through the Internet and social media, in addition to publication through traditional media outlets. Public relations specialists are often in charge of monitoring and responding to social media questions and concerns.

Public relations specialists are different from advertisers in that they get their stories covered by media instead of purchasing ad space in publications and on television.

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How To Become A Media Relations Specialist

Public relations specialists typically need a bachelor’s degree. Employers prefer candidates who have studied public relations, journalism, communications, English, or business.

Education

Public relations specialists typically need a bachelor’s degree in public relations, journalism, communications, English, or business. Through such programs, students produce a portfolio of work that demonstrates their ability to prospective employers.

Training

Entry-level workers typically begin by maintaining files of material about an organization’s activities, skimming and retaining relevant media articles, and assembling information for speeches and pamphlets. After gaining experience, public relations specialists begin to write news releases, speeches, articles for publication, or carry out public relations programs.

Other Experience

Internships at public relations firms or in the public relations departments of other businesses can be helpful in getting a job as a public relations specialist.

Some employers prefer candidates that have experience communicating with others through a school newspaper or a leadership position in school or in their community.

Important Qualities

Interpersonal skills. Public relations specialists deal with the public and the media regularly; therefore, they must be open and friendly to maintain a favorable image for their organization.

Organizational skills. Public relations specialists are often in charge of managing several events at the same time, requiring superior organizational skills.

Problem-solving skills. Public relations specialists sometimes must explain how a company or client is handling sensitive issues. They must use good judgment in what they report and how they report it.

Speaking skills. Public relations specialists regularly speak on behalf of their organization. When doing so, they must be able to clearly explain the organization’s position.

Writing skills. Public relations specialists must be able to write well-organized and clear press releases and speeches. They must be able to grasp the key messages they want to get across and write them in a short, succinct way to get the attention of busy readers or listeners.

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Media Relations Specialist jobs

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Media Relations Specialist Career Paths

Media Relations Specialist
Public Relations Manager Marketing Communications Manager Marketing Manager
Brand Marketing Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Communications Specialist Communications Manager
Communications Director
7 Yearsyrs
Public Relations Communications Director Marketing Director
Director Of Communications And Marketing
9 Yearsyrs
Writer And Editor Public Affairs Specialist Public Relations
Director Of Publications Marketing
6 Yearsyrs
Account Manager Senior Account Executive Public Relations
Director, Corporate Communications
10 Yearsyrs
Marketing Manager Sales Consultant Marketing Consultant
Head Of Marketing
6 Yearsyrs
Recruiter Senior Account Executive Public Relations
Manager Of Corporate Communications
8 Yearsyrs
Account Manager Account Executive Marketing Specialist
Marketing Communications Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Communications Manager Marketing Manager
Marketing Director
7 Yearsyrs
Billing Specialist Project Manager Marketing Consultant
Marketing Lead
6 Yearsyrs
Communications Specialist Project Manager Program Manager
Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Media Relations Manager Marketing Communications Manager
Marketing Program Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Recruiter Program Manager Marketing Consultant
Marketing Strategist
6 Yearsyrs
Public Relations Manager Communications Manager Marketing Manager
National Account Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Marketing Manager Writer And Editor Public Affairs Specialist
Public Affairs Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Communications Director Marketing Consultant Marketing Manager
Regional Marketing Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Communications Manager Communications Director Marketing Director
Senior Director Of Marketing
13 Yearsyrs
Public Relations Marketing Manager
Senior Manager Of Marketing
9 Yearsyrs
Media Relations Manager Public Relations Manager Communications Director
Vice President Of Communication
5 Yearsyrs
Communications Director Marketing Director
Vice President Of Marketing & Communications
12 Yearsyrs
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Average Length of Employment
Media Specialist 2.9 years
Specialist 2.5 years
Media Assistant 1.7 years
Media Associate 1.7 years
Top Employers Before
Internship 11.7%
Cashier 4.7%
Reporter 2.9%
Editor 2.7%
Volunteer 2.6%
Top Employers After
Manager 4.9%
Consultant 4.1%
Director 3.5%
Recruiter 3.3%

Media Relations Specialist Demographics

Gender

Female

68.6%

Male

29.9%

Unknown

1.5%
Ethnicity

White

79.5%

Hispanic or Latino

11.8%

Asian

6.3%

Unknown

1.8%

Black or African American

0.6%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

53.9%

French

10.2%

Russian

4.7%

Portuguese

4.7%

Mandarin

3.9%

Chinese

3.9%

Italian

3.1%

Swedish

2.3%

German

2.3%

Hmong

1.6%

Japanese

1.6%

Arabic

1.6%

Turkish

0.8%

Romanian

0.8%

Hindi

0.8%

Azerbaijani

0.8%

Korean

0.8%

Armenian

0.8%

Ojibwe

0.8%

Albanian

0.8%
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Media Relations Specialist Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

15.9%

Arizona State University

12.2%

Florida State University

5.3%

George Washington University

4.9%

West Virginia University

4.9%

Michigan State University

4.5%

University of Maryland - College Park

4.5%

Southern New Hampshire University

4.5%

Liberty University

4.5%

American University

4.5%

University of Maryland - University College

4.1%

Howard University

4.1%

University of North Texas

3.7%

University of Kansas

3.7%

University of South Carolina - Columbia

3.7%

Northern Illinois University

3.3%

University of Arizona

3.3%

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

2.9%

University of Southern California

2.9%

Walden University

2.9%
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Majors

Business

22.7%

Communication

13.6%

Journalism

7.6%

Marketing

5.9%

Political Science

5.4%

Management

5.0%

English

4.9%

Public Relations

4.9%

Psychology

4.4%

Human Resources Management

3.4%

Health Care Administration

3.3%

Criminal Justice

2.8%

General Studies

2.6%

Law

2.3%

Education

2.2%

Liberal Arts

2.2%

Public Administration

2.0%

Nursing

1.6%

Medical Assisting Services

1.6%

Sociology

1.6%
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Degrees

Bachelors

47.2%

Masters

20.1%

Other

17.4%

Associate

8.2%

Certificate

4.6%

Doctorate

1.9%

Diploma

0.4%

License

0.2%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Media Relations Specialist Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Audience Relations Specialist Sap Global Marketing, Inc. Palo Alto, CA Nov 21, 2016 $136,868 -
$178,415
Label Relations Specialist Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Jul 13, 2016 $132,860 -
$151,300
Media Relations Specialist Intel Corporation Hillsboro, OR May 01, 2016 $98,467 -
$175,400
Corporate Relations Specialist University of California at Santa Barbara Santa Barbara, CA Jan 03, 2014 $95,636
Corporate Relations Specialist University of California at Santa Barbara Santa Barbara, CA Oct 20, 2014 $95,636
Media Relations Specialist Intel Corporation Hillsboro, OR Aug 24, 2015 $82,618 -
$152,800
Donor Relations Specialist San Diego Center for Children San Diego, CA Sep 03, 2015 $82,000
International Relations Specialist Liberty World Trade Inc. Farmingdale, NY Apr 29, 2011 $80,933 -
$80,950
International Relations Specialist Liberty World Trade Inc. Farmingdale, NY Jul 12, 2011 $80,933 -
$80,950
Shareholder Relations Specialist Citgo Petroleum Corporation Houston, TX Feb 09, 2016 $75,000
Media Relations Specialist Access Now New York, NY Nov 11, 2013 $75,000
Media Relations Senior Specialist Maxmara USA Inc. New York, NY Jan 10, 2016 $72,000
Vendor Relations Specialist American Airlines, Inc. Fort Worth, TX Mar 07, 2011 $70,201
Media Relations Specialist The Ortiz Law Firm, PLLC Irving, TX Dec 15, 2016 $50,000
Media Relations Specialist Feit Management Company Hollywood, FL Sep 20, 2013 $50,000
Media Relations Specialist Feit Management Company Hollywood, FL Aug 16, 2013 $50,000
Spanish Media Relations Specialist The Ortiz Law Firm, PLLC Irving, TX Oct 08, 2016 $49,171
Production & Media Relations Specialist Collective Heritage Institute San Francisco, CA Dec 22, 2016 $48,900
Media Relations Specialist El Venezolano TV Inc. Miami, FL Jan 09, 2016 $48,500
Media Relations Specialist Cyberlink.Com Corporation Santa Clara, CA Oct 01, 2011 $47,271
Media Relations Specialist Cyberlink.Com Corp. Santa Clara, CA Oct 15, 2011 $47,271
Media Relations Specialist Singpoli Capital Corporation Pasadena, CA Sep 10, 2014 $41,761
Media Relations Specialist Criteria Entertainment Inc. Los Angeles, CA Sep 08, 2015 $41,761
Media Relations Specialist YMF Carpets, Inc. Santa Monica, CA Sep 04, 2014 $41,761
Media Relations Specialist YMF Carpets, Inc. Los Angeles, CA Nov 10, 2014 $41,761
International Media Relations Specialist CJ CGV America La, LLC Los Angeles, CA Oct 01, 2014 $41,761
Media Relations Specialist Adwell Communications, Inc. Los Angeles, CA Sep 17, 2013 $41,740
Media Relations Specialist Talarico Building Services, Inc. Bellmawr, NJ Oct 01, 2012 $41,740
Media Relations Specialist Talarico Building Service, Inc. Bellmawr, NJ Sep 10, 2012 $41,740

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Top Skills for A Media Relations Specialist

CustomerServiceSkillsWebContentNewVendorsPressReleasesFinancialDonorDatabasePhoneCallsDataEntryNewsReleasesSpecialEventsAlumniFacebookTwitterAdditionalEmergencyCustomerSatisfactionHealthCareInboundCallsInternalCommunicationsAudit

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Top Media Relations Specialist Skills

  1. Customer Service Skills
  2. Web Content
  3. New Vendors
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Oversee communications including emails, publications, web content, social media.
  • Negotiated fees to ensure new vendors are competitive with those currently on the panel.
  • Draft original content for publication in local and regional print publications; including press releases, feature stories and photography.
  • Communicate with American Society members regarding different cancer related issues and to renew their financial support.
  • Solicit financial contributions from each previously called donor and accurately update donor database.

Top Media Relations Specialist Employers

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