What is it?
A PR and Communications agency promotes and represents businesses in the general marketplace, in its specialist field and within the media. It is concerned with creating a name for the client and helping it succeed
What's the appeal?
The chance to work closely with a variety of companies identifying their needs at the same time as focusing on an area of personal interest and increasing relevance to the clienteles' core business
What skills do I need?
You need to understand the objectives of the client and identify a strategy for achieving those objectives through increasingly diverse communication channels. Then you have to sell that story effectively to a chosen audience
What does it cost?
A very basic breakdown: rented office premises (£650), computers (£2000), printer (£300), desks and furniture (£700), telephones (£200), print costs (£1000) and legal expenses (£120)
What can I earn?
A sample hourly rate for executive time is £70.You should focus on securing retained clients on a regular monthly income. In theory, therefore, two executives should be able to generate a fee income of circa £150,000 per annum
Any red tape?
Usual office rules apply when setting up the business such as insurance and providing amenities for staff
Prospects for growth
It is essential that you identify a market area to focus on what is new but also experiencing growth (competition so proven demand). For example Tim Lewis and Greg Moore of Synapse Communications specialise in corporate social responsibility (CSR) - working with companies that promote responsible business practices to benefit business and society
Tips for success
Remember that this is a people business - there's no point in going into it if you don't like talking and you will need to be friendly and persuasive. It is also very important that staff are aware of this when you employ them. Keep focused and don't forget to market the company, even when busy
This is a fun and diverse industry - you will speak to different people each day. It is also mentally stimulating
The media can be influenced but not controlled - you will find this frustrating until you learn to accept it
Institute of Public Relations (IPR) http://www.ipr.org.uk/