If you're a graduate looking to get into PR and need to get a feel for the kind of questions employers might ask at interview, then make sure you research these graduate PR interview questions below. These questions and answers are taken from real graduate interviews, and compiled to give you an idea of what to expect and how to prepare your answers.
Example PR Interview Questions:
Explain why you want to work in PR?
The kind of candidate that a PR agency looks for is a confident, people person with great communication skills who's an all round media junkie. Talk about your passion for multimedia such as newspapers (all of them, even the tabloids), magazines, TV, radio, websites, social media and blogs. You want to be giving off the impression of someone who is very involved not just professionally but on a personal level as well. Talk about your experiences that relate to the fast paced atmosphere of working in PR. Are you a good communicator? You need to prove this with every answer you give by delivering it in an enthusiastic, composed and confident manner. Don't waffle, a shorter more well crafted answer that's to the point is much more effective than a stretched one where your point can become vague.
Why do you think companies or people need PR?
This kind of question is used to test how much you actually know about PR and its place in business so make sure you have done your research otherwise it will really show. PR is the process of assessing public attitudes, identifying the needs of an individual or an organisation, before planning and carrying out actions to earn public acceptance and respect. With this definition understood it's easy to see how important it is for say; a company in the public eye or a celebrity launching a new product. With good PR you can change opinion, sell more products or get more people to listen or respect you by indirectly creating a positive image within the public. Use an example of a current news story where you have seen PR used successfully and unsuccessfully and perhaps make suggestions on what you might have done to counteract this in a similar situation. The interviewer will be looking for you to be picking up on detail that the average person would absorb passively and relaying back as a reason why it's important.
How is PR different from advertising?
These two industries are very different even though they're commonly confused as being one and the same. The purpose of advertising is to create awareness about products or services in order to make a sale. It's a one way, paid for communication. The purpose of PR is to create and enhance the reputation of any company or individual. It's a two way communication that's real content. Use examples of the two to explain to your interviewer that you understand the difference. The answer to this question doesn't have to be long. It's more important to be clear and accurate.
What do you consider to be your most advanced skill? How does it relate to the skills needed in PR?
Having an ability to work under pressure is definitely a key skill required for working in PR. Within PR you could be analysing clients’ needs, writing and editing press releases, coordinating media contacts for an event or working with journalists. No two days are the same in PR, and as such, you need to work on your feet. Much of your work is often conducted over the telephone too, so maybe consider mentioning your strong communication skills in reference to why you would do well in PR.
What is PR?
According to Public Relations News, "Public relations is the management function which evaluates public attitudes, identifies the policies and procedures of an individual or an organisation with the public interest, and plans and executes a program of action to earn public understanding and acceptance." But don't just read out a scripted answer; be genuine, and mention your passion and interest in the industry within your answer.