1st Edition

How to Succeed in a PR Agency Real Talk to Grow Your Career & Become Indispensable

By Kristin Johnson, Shalon Roth Copyright 2019
    160 Pages
    by Routledge

    160 Pages
    by Routledge

    Learning how to be successful in a public relations (PR) agency is a stressful on-the-job, sink-or-swim, immersive experience. While other texts teach PR theory and practice, no other book guides early to mid-career PR professionals through the day-to-day life of working in an agency and the skills required to excel and build a career.

    This text demystifies the PR agency experience with foundational information to simplify and clarify agency life. Authors Kristin Johnson and Shalon Roth, who each grew successful careers in PR agencies, share secrets that no one will teach in a class or a seminar. This is real talk about real life in an agency – punctuated by anecdotes from leaders in the industry. This is a must-read for communications students and PR professionals looking to grow their career and become indispensable to teams and clients.

    I: Why Indispensable?

    1. About This Book

    2. Who is This Book For

    3. What’s in It For You

    II: Agency Basics

    4. Architecture of Agency Life

    5. The Life Cycle of Business

    6. Money Honey

    7. Budget Basics

    8. Staffing

    9. Ethical Conduct

    10. Writing Essentials

    III. Forget Titles

    11. A Leader at Every Level

    12. Achieving Authenticity

    13. Diplomacy and Persuasion

    14. Managing Expectations

    15. PR: Personal Relationships

    IV: Lead the Way

    16. Building a Team

    17. Personal Branding

    18. Managing Your Career

    19. Managing the Careers of Others

    20. Managing Client Relationships

    V. Pay It Forward

    21. A Message from the Authors



    Kristin Johnson works as a client advisor and executive coach at Logos Consulting Group and Logos Institute for Crisis Management and Executive Leadership, and is an adjunct instructor at New York University in the School of Professional Studies (NYU-SPS), where she has taught in the master’s level public relations and corporate communications program since 2014. Kristin also serves as a mentor and judge for NYU Stern’s W. R. Berkley Innovation Labs $300K Entrepreneurs Challenge, which aims to develop people and ideas that create value for business and society.

    Shalon Roth has spent the last 15 years on the front lines of PR and communications agencies serving start-ups to multinational publicly traded companies. She founded PR-it®, which combines the power of a proprietary data-driven pricing model with a global community of high-caliber, seasoned public relations, digital and creative experts to deliver high-quality projects to brands, and on-demand support to agencies managing workflow peaks.

    Ranked one of the best new PR books to read in 2020 by BookAuthority

    "This book shortens the learning curve for people early in their PR careers. Given the rapid pace of change in the communications and marketing disciplines this can be the difference between ‘just doing well’ and ‘truly thriving’ in one’s career."

    Jill Dash, Senior Director, APCO Worldwide

    "Every would-be PR agency professional should read this book! You’ll learn what usually takes a few years of working at an agency about the 101 on PR agency life, including its architecture and operation, managing your career, the importance of team and team building, managing client relationships, the adrenaline rush of new business pitches and more. I’m surprised that a book like this hasn’t been written before but, thankfully, now it has."

    Patrice Tanaka, Founder & Chief Joy Officer, Joyful Planet, and co-founder three award-winning PR agencies

    "Succeeding in today’s professional service firm especially the modern PR agency is both challenging and exhilarating. Society and business are now digital customers and employees are driving the relationship and the conversation, meaning that agencies must be providing ideas and solutions at a much greater pace. As such, professionals in those firms need to understand the nuances of firm life. How to Succeed in a PR Agency is a must-read to map out your individual path to success."

    Gary F. Grates, Principal, W2O Group

    "This book’s emphasis on business acumen and client relationship management makes it an ideal learning resource for public relations students and young professionals. The authors’ real-world experience and insights from industry leaders are organically blended with a realistic and reliable roadmap for launching a successful career in a PR agency."

    Yan Jin, University of Georgia, USA