Public Relations: Around the World
By Jennifer Ren, Intern
Leaving New York City and moving across the world to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates was a huge change. Adding to the changing environments, cultures and people was having the opportunity to intern at a US-based public relations firm in Abu Dhabi, catering to the developing businesses there. The combination of the publicly owned companies as well as the still-advancing city of Abu Dhabi made public relations extremely important for the success of both the city and these individual companies.
When I began interning, I was immediately thrown into compiling publicity status reports, reports that detailed the media coverage. Every morning, the office gathered in the large conference room and combed through the national papers, looking for stories regarding any of our clients. Each relevant story was clipped, compiled and sent to the client for review. This work was meant to ease me into public relations work in the UAE – acclimating me with the national news agencies as well my general place in the office.
My familiarity with public relations in the Gulf grew as I began to take on more responsibilities. Drafting press releases for different clients, preparing briefing documents for senior management and liaising with media contacts gave me a clear image of what public relations in the Gulf is – fast-paced and growing quickly.
So when I began interning at Fusion PR upon my return to the States, it was a completely different ballgame. I moved from working at a firm contracted to target consumers, otherwise known as “B2C” firms to working at a “B2B” firm, whose work is geared towards other businesses. Though a seemingly small move within the public relations industry, I felt a huge difference, which came mainly from the type of work being done. I was no longer working with companies wanting to garner attention and business from the public. Instead, I now intern at Fusion PR, a firm targeting tech-specific companies – technology that I have never heard of prior to my joining the team.
Although one would think my experiences within the public relations industry to be completely different because of the differing locations, the actual work is not different. The goal of public relations professionals regardless of location is to raise and garner attention towards a company’s business – a goal I have worked towards in the United Arab Emirates and a goal I continue to work towards at Fusion PR.