Public Relations Management or PR as it is popularly known is a subject of Semester 4 in the second year of BMS and is one of the fun subjects of this Semester. On compression with hard core theory of Cooperative and rural markets, EXIM procedures or Research methods in business; PR stands out as a subject that is comparatively easier to study and score marks in. Also the added benefit that like marketing PR is also a theory subject that has a very practical approach makes this subject stand part.
So what exactly is Public Relations?
Any company big or small, the main aim is to earn profits and the process of making profits is not as easy as it seems. With the number of competitors at all levels it gets difficult for every company to stand out and be able to connect with it’s customers. In order to make sure that the connect exists with their customers these comapnies desire to create good will and a positive image in the minds of their consumers, so that consumers choose them for reasons more than just the absolute product that they offer.
For creating this good will, the companies do a lot of activities that benefit the consumers or the industry in general and the role of Public Relations is to let the people know about the good deeds of the company so that a positive communication link is maintained.
Not just talking about the positives but the role of Public Relations is to make sure that there is a constant supply of industry and company related information going towards all their stake holders, customers, investors, share holders and competitors as well.
So basically PR is like the mouth piece of a company that helps them in communicating with their stake holders. It can also be done on an individual level as apart of image management. When competitors plant negative stories to defame the company, PR steps in as crisis management; it manages various issues that the company deals within itself as an organization and helps find ways and means to solve them, PR also deals actively with creation and maintenance of relationships with key players and important people of the industry the company is functioning in.
Resources, risks and strategies are also managed by the public relations officers who are on a high level in the organization and their contribution to these departments is significant.
Public Relations is one of the vital pillars of an organization and it’s contribution can not be denied in any way.
Why should I Study PR?
Public Relations has a very strong contribution to the growth and development of an organization as elaborated above and hence the knowledge of this field will be very helpful for someone wishing to make a career in any field post BMS. Knowing and understanding the working of this department helps you know how certain vital segments of your organization work, so even if you are not in the PR department having the knowledge and information will come in handy in the future.
From a career perspective PR is obviously a booming field and has a lot of scope today. Understanding the dynamics of this subject will help you evaluate and understand the pro’s and con’s of making a career here and help you choose wisely.
Is Public Relations Boring?
“PR is rarely the kind off subject that can be classified as boring, even if you do not like theory subjects and prefer practical subjects PR is one subject that is hard to get bored off! It may have a theoretical base but all the concepts are application based and need to be related with real life examples and cases in order to be understood” says BMS alumni and PR lover Ritika Shah.
PR is not a set of theories to be mugged up and definitions quoted, it is a subject that needs to be read, practically thought about and understood, if you believe in mugging up and vomiting in the exams than this is not for you! Learn to have some fun while you study, solve cases and debate on the different approaches you can adopt as a PR personnel the subject will immediately become interesting and full of fun to study.
Do I need to join Coaching Classes for Public Relations Management?
No, you absolutely do not need coaching classes for this one, what you need is to read the newspaper and magazines to know your PR well. If you read business news it is the best, but even if news on celebrities or sports people interests you just go ahead and read them you will start identifying the PR tactics used by their spokes people to keep them in the news.
How totally meaningless news reports of cat fights between actresses and great deeds by actors and models make it to the front page without it having any factual base is what PR is all about and reading all the more makes it fun to identify the tactics and tricks used by public relations all the time.
What is the syllabus for Public Relation Management?
PR is divided broadly into 4 Units as follows:
Unit 1: Public Relations
Unit 2: Public Relations Strategy
Unit 3: Public Relations Communication
Unit 4: Public Relations Management
For detailed syllabus and a list of the reference books click Here!
Top 10 Pubic Relations Terms that you will come across in the course of your study:
1. Public Relations: The practice of spreading information between organization and public for smooth communication practices.
2. Press Conferences: Press conference is a meeting organized by a company or an organization in order to give out information to the media.
3. Trade Fairs: Trade Fairs are exhibitions organizations for people within an industry to fraternize and showcase each others products to gain B2B sales and information about the current happening in the industry.
4. Communication Skills: The skills and abilities that enable smooth and effective transfer of ideas from one source to another, are termed as communication skills.
5. Brand Ambassador: A Brand Ambassador is someone who represents the brand, can also be termed as the face of the brand and signifies whatever qualities a particular brand stands for. Usually a brand ambassador is a popular celebrity form the entertainment or sports industry
6. RTI: RTI or Right to information is the act created bu the Government of India, which gives the citizens provision to apply for information on certain government and legal information they need access to, this act which was much debated recently helps the public attain transparency and clarity in the dealings and proceedings of the government and its various allied departments.
7. Corporate image: This term refers to the image of a corporate in the industry and among the consumers.
8. Pubic Relations Personnel: People or personnel who work in the Public Relations department of a company are termed as Public relations personnel for a company.
9. Body Language: The mannerisms and actions of a parson play an important role in the effective communication of his ideas and words, these gestures and features are termed as body language.
10. Event Management: Management of events is termed as event management, so these events can be anything from press meets, parties, functions, celebrations, etc.
How do I study PR in order to Score Maximum Marks?
With Public Relations the paper for internal exams in most college’s is set in a way that there is a case study to solve. If that is the case then brushing up on your theories a week in advance for half an hour a day from the syllabus prescribed to you is a must, in case you want to score really good marks be aware of the latest happenings by reading and quoting examples from the latest news and happenings around the world.
“Even if you are an average student PR is a subject that can be dealt with easily and will help in boosting up your marks in the exams, so for the internal exams if you are short on time do PR for an hour on three days and that should take care of passing in the subject,” says Jitesh Ghosh, BMS Alumni.
For the end semester exam, in case you are from the topper category you need to change your approach a bit for this subject, take up all the solved case studies at the end of each subject and go through them immediately as you are completed studying the chapter, this ensure the theory is fresh and when you apply it to the cases it gets fixed in your head for a long time.
“Scoring in this subject is all about quoting more and more examples and relating the answers to real life, so make it a point to do dedicated newspaper and magazine reading an hour a day, you will be amazed at how all that reading comes back to you on exam day and gives you a lot of content to write about in the answers” adds Jitesh.
For someone who is short on time and looking out to pass, do your important questions in the first two days and the rest of the week study as much as you can, you dont have any theories or a lot of definitions here to waste any time in mugging up, just understand and write down in the paper. An answer framed maybe not exactly as per the textbook but in a way that shows understanding of the concept will help you pass without any difficulty in this subject.
PR is not a KT subject and can act as one of the boosts to your GPA in the future so work a little hard for this exam!
Are there any specific Notes or Textbooks I should refer to?
Use faculty notes if any, because they are the best for this subject. If not try Vipul Prakashan or RPH textbooks, you can obviously choose from the list of reference books mentioned in the link above.
As far as Notes are concerned, you can try referring these notes for Public Relations:
What are the Characteristics of a good PR person?
1) Always ready – You never know when which client may call, or when bad press may occur you have to always be on your toes.
2) Investigative spirit – knowing the industry inside out is a must as a PR person and so investigative spirit is a must.
3) Great storyteller- relationship building with people and with the industry needs a little magic of your story telling to get your work done.
4) Persuasive prowess – Taking no is never an option and so your persuasive skills matter a lot.
5) Connection cultivator – Connections are of utmost in PR and a PR personnel must be able to do that with ease.
Did you know? PR using Social Media is the next big thing in the career market!
Well, that’s right with all the information about Public Relations going up in this post a very special mention goes to Social media and Pubic Relations. Gone are the days when social media was just a tool for posting birthday pictures and sharing funny links on each other’ walls today social media plays an very important role in determining the image of a person/ company/ corporate/ industry and even the Indian government has woken up to it’s benefits on a large scale.
We have video speeches by the PMO, each Minister, MP, MLA having their own twitter handle and Facebook pages and they use these accounts to connect with the masses on a large scale. From showcasing work reports via Facebook status updates, sharing vital images and information via twitter links and actively talking to the junta the GOI today uses social media as a very dominant platform for its well oiled and seamless Public Relations.
Taking a leaf out of the government, India Inc .has woken up to the benefits of likes and tweets to manage its image and relations and is as vociferous and outspoken as its global competitors.
This goes on to show that a subject like public relations is in for the long haul and learning and understanding it is vital on levels way ahead than the primary marks scoring purposes of the BMS student.
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