How to Become a Director of Public Relations

If you have a flair for public relations and are interested in progressing your career, you may want to set your sights on a position as a director of public relations. Directors of public relations have many responsibilities and are highly trained in marketing and communications.

What Is a Director of Public Relations?

A director of public relations is usually a step above the public relations manager, which in turn is head of a public relations team. Directors of public relations are usually found in large companies for the supervision of large public relations programs.

The director will need to manage different projects all with the goal of creating the desired public image of a company, political candidate or other organization. Public relations directors usually operate outside of the traditional hierarchy of a company and answer directly to a high level executive within the corporation.

A public relations director needs to provide consistency within a company or individual’s branding and many use many different tactics to achieve this. Many company will need to use public relations experts as a method to regulate their marketing tactics and increase their bottom line. The director of public relations may be responsible for a single large corporation or many companies that fall under the same umbrella.

What Does a Director of Public Relations Do?

A director of public relations will need to consult with the company to determine the best possible method of creating a public image.

How to Become a Director of Public Relations

Directors of public relations will usually spend some time as a manager of public relations or a public relations specialist.

Often, a director of public relations will be called upon to create a new brand image to a company or to alter an existing brand image.

Other times, the director of public relations will simply need to maintain the image of the brand. New companies will usually require the development of an entirely new brand while larger companies usually stay with the brands they already have.

The director of public relations needs to identify the ways the company can extend and maintain their brand through a variety of media. Directors need to be experts in all types of media and marketing to create a campaign that can benefit the company on all fronts.

Directors are usually highly motivated and highly networked individuals that have many years of experience in either marketing or media.

How Do You Become a Director of Public Relations?

Most directors of public relations will have a higher degree such as a Bachelor’s Degree or Master’s Degree in marketing, advertising, communications or business. A director of public relations needs to be extremely success oriented, as it is a competitive field and an extremely sought after position.

Directors of public relations will usually spend some time as a manager of public relations or a public relations specialist. As shown by O*Net Online, those within the public relations industry usually have a Bachelor’s Degree or higher.

Managers within the public relations field usually enjoy some mobility, with the ability to move between companies. Managers that can display the ability to lead and manage others and that are instrumental in successful PR campaigns will be considered candidates for a director of public relations position.

How Do You Advance as a Director of Public Relations?

Directors of public relations can achieve higher rates of pay through seniority and through showing that they can consistently build successful PR campaigns.

$57,550
Bachelor's Degree
1 to 5 years
None
320,000
21%
68,300
Find Related CareersSOURCE: US Bureau of Labor Statistics
Once a reputation has been built, a public relations director may be able to acquire positions in larger companies and at higher rates of pay.

PR directors are in demand for a wide variety of industries and according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics the industry is expected to see higher than average rates of growth. Those interested in moving into other fields can consider lucrative careers in sales and marketing.

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