1. Form and cultivate personal relationships with your clients. This is very important to being a successful Public Relations professional, whether you are just starting in the industry or have been in it for many years. Dig deeper than just knowing someone on a name-by-name basis, but add a personal touch and really get to know who they are. Do this by taking them out to lunch, etc. It will go a long way.

2. Always proofread! A journalist with throw away your news release and not contact you if he or she sees many misspelled words or typos. It is very unprofessional and is a bad representation of the company you are representing. Double-check everything you send out, including e-mails!

3. Become educated in the world of social media. FaceBook. FourSquare, and Twitter are just a few of the essential social media tools in the field of Public Relations. Learning about these tools and using them successfully is important, and will open up new educational doors as well as providing new connections.

4. Always provide follow-up. After you meet a potential client, or have an interview, send a handwritten note. This shows high character, integrity, and will set you apart from the rest.

5. Send out news releases in advance. Always send news releases at least 2 weeks in advance, if at all possible. Unless it is immediate-breaking news, journalists typically work on feature stories several weeks before they are sent to print.

6. Be aware of new products and new ways to pitch them. Do not pitch something that has been around for a long time, since people most likely will already know about it. Find something unique and creative to talk about, and create a media kit that will really make that product or organization stand out.

7. Write conversationally, not overly formally. When a journalist reads your press release, he or she does not want to be reading a journalism story, since that is their job to write. Simply explain the product or organization you are representing in clear, easy-to-understand terms.

8. Meet people face-to-face. Get to know people in-person! Don’t make the mistake of simply forming a relationship online. Although this is important, you can get to know someone a lot better when they are actually standing in front of you. Also, people will remember your company a lot better after they have seen your face.

9. Pay attention to details. Make sure all your facts are correct! This is very important, and can make or break your reputation.

10. Establish a name for yourself. Get yourself out there, and be fully immersed in the industry! Take risks, and do not hold back. Even if you fail at first, it will be a learning experience.

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