Learn About Public Relations Online
If you’re thinking about a career change and you’re creative, a great communicator, detail focused, and you love writing, why not choose PR?
It’s a great job and PR professionals are in demand. What’s more, the industry is set to experience continued growth over the coming years. So, it’s a great time to learn about public relations online and move into a new, exciting career.
It’s not all fun and games though. Like every profession, there are downsides to a career in PR. It’s a high stress, highly competitive industry. The hours are long and there are no guaranteed results. For more on the world of PR, read: Advantages and Disadvantages of Public Relations.
But let’s not dwell on the negatives. You’re here because you want a piece of the action. You’re eager to learn about PR and want to know where you can learn PR online.
The first thing to do is find out what is required to be a successful public relations professional and ensure the sector is a good fit for you.
Getting a professional public relations qualification will help. But before you go all-in and enrol in a full-time industry recognised course, why not take advantage of the numerous resources available for you to learn PR online?
In this post, we’re going to explore some of the tools at your disposal so you can learn about public relations online and be 100% sure PR is for you before committing to anything long-term.
Let’s get into it.
How to learn PR online
Online training videos. Blogs. Newsletters. The internet is full of useful tips and advice from PR professionals. Let’s look at some of the options open to you, both free and paid.
Learn public relations online free
Blogs and online magazines are fantastic resources for current public relations news, industry trends and upcoming public relations events. You’ll also find some great insight into working in the industry and predictions about the future of PR.
Let’s look at the best of the blogs and online news sites.
Some of the best blogs and online magazines about the PR industry include:
PR Week is the ‘world’s leading’ PR and communications publication, providing news from around the globe, opinion pieces, and campaign reviews. The site hosts a job board and offers careers advice by way of interviews, tips and company insight.
It has pretty much everything an aspiring PR professional needs to get a handle on the current state of the PR industry. It’s a trusted resource and a great first point of call when you’re looking to learn about public relations.
PR News Online
PR News Online is another one-stop shop for news, research, opportunities and trends in the field of public relations. The site has a job board, a marketing resource directory and a selection of research papers that you can download for free.
Like PR Week, PR News Online is a long-running publication that’s developed its brand and established itself as a trustworthy source of information for PR and communications professionals. You can rely on the content within the site to be of value as you look to learn PR.
The Wadds blog is full of insight and analysis of the public relations industry from the perspective of a PR professional with years of experience. The knowledge within these pages is well worth your time as you progress on your journey towards a career in PR and comms.
Where better to learn how to pull off a winning PR campaign than over at Famous Campaigns? After all, the site is dedicated to sharing and ‘celebrating the best in innovative PR, social media, marketing, advertising, events and creative communications.’
With 186,000 unique visitors, more than 10,000 newsletter subscribers and over 75,000 social media followers, Famous Campaigns’ claim of being ‘the most popular independent PR blog in the UK’ can’t be too far from the truth.
It would be remiss of me not to mention the PR Superstar blog. Full of handy tips and expert advice from a long-serving PR professional (me!), you’ll find expert analysis of public relations campaigns from organisations and individuals across the globe and plenty of insight for those, like you, who are looking to get into the world of public relations. Read: How to Get into PR.
Other worthy mentions
It’s also worth taking a look at online magazines such as Campaign, PR Daily and The Drum. Like PR Week and PR News Online, these publications have built a loyal following providing timely, relevant news, opportunities and support to PR professionals across the globe for decades.
So we’re giving them an honourable mention here and advising you to make them a part of your online PR learning materials.
Why scroll through pages and pages of PR related content when you can have it delivered directly to your inbox? Let’s take a look at some of the best newsletters that future PR pros like yourself should sign up to.
Authored by Sarah Evans, founder and CEO of Sevans PR, the PR@ctical newsletter delivers practical tips that you can utilise to improve your visibility, build your influence and communicate effectively with media outlets.
If you want to know what to expect from Sarah’s newsletter before committing, you can read past editions without a subscription.
The PRovoke Media Newsletter offers top media relations insights and briefings to more than 15,000 public relations pros via their free weekly newsletter. They share industry best practices, celebrate great work and delve into the latest happenings with the world’s top PR firms and executives.
Subscribing to this newsletter will help you build a solid, well-rounded understanding of the PR world and how it functions.
Muck Rack Daily
The Muck Rack Daily newsletter provides daily industry news, insights and trends alongside actionable tips to help you in your public relations career.
In addition to the daily newsletter, there’s the Muck Rack Weekly. A LinkedIn newsletter curated by Muck Rack CEO Gregory Galant, filling you in on the latest media news that, as a PR professional, you should know about.
Sign up to HARO (Help A Reporter Out) as a source and you’ll receive three emails a day (Monday to Friday) loaded with requests from journalists looking for experts to answer questions and provide advice on a range of topics, from health and relationships to technology and everything in between.
You can pitch directly to the reporter in the hope that your story will get picked up and used in their piece.
You may not have the stories to pitch right now (whilst you’re in the process of trying to learn about public relations). But it’s free to sign up and you’ll get a taste of the sort of things journalists are looking for.
This resource will be incredibly useful for when you have content to land for clients in the future.
Online communities and forums
Public relations can be a lonely profession, especially if you’re working for yourself as a freelancer. The hours can be long and much of your time is spent sitting in front of a computer screen.
If only there was somewhere online where you could meet like-minded PR professionals to chat with and learn from. In fact, there are loads.
Here are some of the best online communities for you to join and mix with folk with a passion for public relations and comms.
Digital Marketing on LinkedIn
A LinkedIn group with more than a million members, Digital Marketing: Social Media, Search, Mobile & more offers free webinars on a range of PR and marketing topics. The community is great for networking and its members offer plenty of tips and actionable advice to implement. A worthwhile learning opportunity for those looking to break into the world of public relations and communications.
PR, Marketing and Media on Facebook
The private PR, Marketing and Media Facebook group was created by PR bod Kristen Conahan. The group has over 5,000 members, including publicists, editors, journalists and producers who support each other and share opportunities. This is a great place to start building your network as a newbie on the PR scene.
The Horizon Comms group is for both experienced communications specialists and those new to the profession to connect and share ideas. Centred around internal communications, with a focus on wellbeing, the group is run by chartered PR practitioner, Dan Holden.
Questions, tips and shared experiences are welcomed by all. A great place to hang out if you’re looking to specialise in internal comms.
To learn more about internal communications, read: What is Internal Communication in Public Relations?
Learn PR online for a fee
We’ve looked at some of the free resources available online to help you learn about public relations. But if you want something a little more substantial to get stuck into and you’re willing to pay to learn about PR, we have a few options for you to check out.
First, there’s the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR). The leading professional institution for public relations in England, it’s one of the most influential PR groups in the country.
The CIPR offers online training and qualifications amongst other resources and membership benefits. Want to find out more about the CIPR? Read: The CIPR: Everything You Need to Know.
Other paid options for you to learn PR online include:
Public Relations Diploma from the International Career Institute
The Public Relations Diploma from the International Career Institute teaches you the skills you need to succeed in the PR industry, with modules completed online at your own pace.
There’s no requirement for prior work experience or industry related education to enrol on this course and students take an average of 24 weeks to earn the diploma. For those with no real-world experience of working in PR, this is a great option to consider.
The Ultimate Public Relations Masterclass
The Ultimate Public Relations Masterclass is a course created by the founder and CEO of TopLine Comms, Heather Baker. Designed for complete beginners, it provides ‘everything you need to be successful’ at public relations in the digital world.
With case studies, statistics, video tutorials and downloadable resources on tap, this course is the perfect learning companion for those that want to learn PR without the stress of formal academia.
A Modern Guide to Public Relations ebook
A Modern Guide to Public Relations eBook is by Amy Rosenberg, the founder of PR firm Veracity, and a no-frills guide to public relations. Contained within is everything you need to know about launching your career in PR.
A Modern Guide to Public Relations: Unveiling the Mystery of PR: Including: Content Marketing, SEO, Social Media & PR Best Practices, to give it its full title, is available in print and Kindle editions. The perfect partner for those who want to read up about public relations in their own time from the comfort of the sofa.
Learning PR online. Recap and summary:
We’ve curated a list of great resources for you to learn PR online. We’ve looked at blogs, online communities and newsletters, plus online courses, tutorials and ebooks. There’s plenty for you to get started with learning about PR.
If you’re entirely new to the public relations industry, it’s a good idea to dig into the free tools we’ve mentioned first. When you’re ready to take the next step, take a look at the paid options.