“It’s Your Summer of Money” Challenge Opportunity #6
Become a Publicist

Rebecca here with the last opportunity for AWAI’s “It’s Your Summer of Money” Challenge.

I’ve chosen to end the Challenge with this one, because I’m always amazed at how few writers know about this opportunity ― or how many have misconceptions about it.

Yet it’s probably one of the easiest ways to make money writing on the side with minimal effort.

You simply follow a few guidelines and voila! You’re done with the assignment.

And the best part?

Two to four hours translates into an extra $1,000 – $2,000 every month.

Not bad, right?

I’m talking about public relations (PR).

Every business can use a little PR. It provides an excellent opportunity to develop goodwill in the public eye, along with third-party credibility you simply can’t buy.

And thanks to the Web, demand has increased exponentially thanks to the valuable web traffic PR can provide.

Plus, you don’t have to do this full-time if you don’t want (although it can pay very well if you do!). You can do it on the side, or just use it to fill any time that pops up between other writing projects.

The choice is yours.

As I mentioned earlier, there are a lot of misconceptions when it comes to PR.

So today, I’d like to clear the air … and show you what a real and amazing opportunity this is … and not just for copywriters, but for anyone wanting to create some extra cash every month writing, or who wants to step into a whole new career.

For starters, let’s address the biggest concern I hear …

I’m a little shy and definitely not the kind of person who likes to schmooze and mingle all the time … is doing PR still for me?


Being a publicist isn’t just about going to events, parties, talking with the media, etc. Sure, some celebrities, musicians, artists, and big companies need outgoing people to handle their publicity activities. But, there are many clients who need simple PR work done behind the scenes … Things like writing, emailing, and submitting content to various websites online.

That said, if you are the extroverted type and like being in the limelight ― attending parties, events, and networking with the people there, that’s great. That option is available to you.

Luckily for the rest of us, you can make a comfortable full-time living focusing only on behind-the-scenes PR work and still not have to do any of that.

What does a publicist do exactly?

When people think about PR, most think it involves a big firm of executives sitting around spinning the truth, trying to get publicity for their clients.

Some even think it involves lavish parties, schmoozing, or blowing up balloons at conferences.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Doing PR for a client as their publicist is all about creating a good relationship between them and the public.

You’ll be creating goodwill. And, the more positive awareness you create, the happier your client will be, and the more money you’ll make.

What kinds of projects are involved with PR?

There are three main projects you’ll be working on when just starting out, or if you’re doing this as a side business.

The first is a press release.

A press release is a short document (usually just a single page) sent out to members of the media that announces news about an organization.

This news can include a charity foundation, an online seminar, a new product, a new hire, a recent company award, a company merger, and so on.

Press releases are popular because they are a great way to build brand awareness in the public’s mind.

The second main project is distributing a press release.

Simply put, this is the act of taking the press release you’ve just written and submitting it to targeted media venues and pertinent Internet sites. It’s a simple job that can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours to complete.

The third main project you’ll work on is assembling a media kit.

A media kit is usually 7 – 10 pages and contains information about a company’s background, the products and services it offers, company news, recent accomplishments, etc.

The purpose of the media kit is that it contains all the important information a reporter or media outlet may need when researching a story.

These are the three main activities you’ll be doing as a publicist. There are more, including drafting PR plans, writing event press releases, and pitching media-members.

But, like I mentioned earlier, the beauty of being in PR is that you can choose what projects you’ll work on. You can tailor your work to fit your personality.

Is there really a demand for this?

Short answer: Yes! In fact, the demand is quite large.

That’s because most small-business owners can’t afford to hire a PR agency, but they know they still need to get the word out to build buzz for their business … making them more apt to hire a freelancer.

Even big companies are cancelling their PR contracts with large agencies and hiring freelancers instead.

Bruce Freeman of ProLine Communications agrees, “A lot of clients are looking for smaller firms, boutique agencies, and single practitioners, because they don’t want to pay the overhead of the big firms.”

And demand is only going to increase.

Projections in the V.S.S. Communication’s 2008-2012 Forecast predict the public relations industry will grow at a compound annual growth rate of nearly 10% through 2012.

Translation: The opportunity for you to do part-time PR work for clients has never been better.

How much money can I make as a publicist?

This is where it gets good. Real good.

And, it’s because the pay is so good that I’m surprised more copywriters aren’t taking advantage of this easy opportunity.

Let’s start with the most common main project, a press release.

Normally it takes less than an hour to write one. The pay? $250 – $500.

From there, the press release needs to be distributed to the right outlets. That’s something you can charge another $250 for.

Your time spent? 30 minutes – 2 hours.

A media kit can fetch you anywhere from $1,000 – $5,000 depending on your experience and perceived expertise.

The best part of writing a media kit is that it’s practically a copy-and-paste job, since your client is providing you with all the information you’ll need. It’s your job to make it look professional, easy-to-understand, and accessible.

Bottom line ― you could easily earn an extra $500 – $2,000 a month working just a few hours by adding PR to your tool belt. And, you can earn a solid six-figure income if you decide to do this full-time.

Are there any start-up costs?

Not really.

Steve Caulk, founder of ProConnect PR puts it best, “PR is a good business to start, because there’s no overhead. You can use your laptop and your Internet hook-up at home, and you’re ready to start doing business.”

And chances are, if you’re reading this, you already have those two things!

Getting started with PR couldn’t be simpler.

But, how hard is it to find clients?

I figured that question was coming! Fortunately, it’s really not hard at all.

For two reasons.

  1. It’s a service that’s in big demand. That means most clients are actively thinking about hiring someone to do their PR.
  2. Because it’s in huge demand, ANY business qualifies as a client ― from your local dry cleaners to multi-million dollar companies around the globe.

What’s more, 20-year PR veteran Melanie Rembrandt has put together a strategic step-by-step guide to getting clients that covers who to contact … what to say … and how to close the deal.

It’s all in the program she authored with AWAI, called Secrets of Becoming a Publicist.

And if you’re at all interested in pursuing this opportunity to make some extra cash every month, it’s THE resource for learning these lucrative PR skills.

In it, Melanie gives you everything you need ― from detailed examples followed by exercises that allow you to master each part of a press release, media kit, and PR plan … to the formulas, templates, and contracts you’ll need to succeed.

Nothing is left to guesswork.

And, during the “It’s Your Summer of Money” Challenge special, you can save $50 on Secrets of Becoming a Publicist if you order right now.

Plus, you’ll also get an easy-to-follow plan for the next 30, 60, and 90 days from Melanie herself. That way, you’ll be sure to have your business up-and-running by Labor Day.

Although I must admit, she can actually have you making money in your first week as a publicist!

Remember, you don’t need to have any direct experience at all (or a big, fancy college degree in public relations). All you need is to follow a few simple guidelines and, in less than a week, you can start making money as a publicist.

If you’re a freelance copywriter, knowing how to do some PR is a great way to increase your chances of getting new business from every potential client you talk to.

And if you’re looking to escape the 9-to-5 grind, or simply pad your bank account with a little extra cash every month, it’s a great way to do that, too.

Order right now …

Or, learn more about this program here …

When you order, you’ll also receive access to a live teleseminar Melanie did titled “Getting Started in PR.” This is where she answered every question AWAI members had about becoming a publicist.

Check out the other “It’s Your Summer of Money” Challenge opportunities.

Or learn about the Challenge.

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

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Published: June 16, 2010

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