Intro to Digital Communications

As the responsibilities of public relations practitioners become more diverse, it can be helpful for new professionals to learn untraditional tasks. Pitching media and writing will always be a part of public relations; but as an entry-level professional, I’ve also learned other activities that can benefit clients in more ways than one. Buff up your resume and portfolio by learning these new skills.


Capturing a short video for your client can make a great visual for customers. To film a video, use a digital camera, tablet or a smartphone. Most computers come with an editing program that can be learned quickly. Two simple programs to check out are Windows Live Movie Maker (for PC users) and the iMovie program on MacBooks (for Apple users). The editing programs include transition slides, music capabilities and photo sharing that can make even a home video look professional.

The video ideas below can fit almost any client no matter the type of industry. You could also make videos for friends or co-workers.

  • How-to videos
  • One-on-one interviews with the CEO
  • Tours
  • Testimonials

Check out some video examples on Vimeo.


Learning HTML coding is not as daunting as it may seem. One way to learn HTML/CSS is through free resources online, such as Codeacademy. Websites can be created for clients, your agency, non-profit organizations or your organizational membership groups. Be sure to inform your readers of the following details on your site:

  • An “About” page (Who or what this website is about)
  • Social media links (Links to all social media channels)
  • Events/Calendar page (Show readers what’s coming up)
  • Contact page (List an email and/or phone number)

If a website for one of these audiences is already established, offer to help manage the site with your newly polished skills. The more you practice building a website, the easier it gets!

Social Media

Most new pros are accustomed to using Facebook, Twitter and FourSquare, but we shouldn’t ignore newer social media platforms that have emerged. Pinterest, Vimeo, GetGlue and Yelp are among the many social network sites that have attracted many users this past year. Play around with these pages in your free time to familiarize yourself with them. If you come across a site that would be appropriate for a client, you can propose to create an account for them, as it will help further their marketing outreach.

Have you engaged in any these skills mentioned above at your job or internship? What other skills or talents are beneficial for new pros to learn?

Passionate about communications and business, Nelli Tokleh majored in public relations and is currently studying to earn an MBA. She serves on the board of PRSA Dallas. In her spare time, Nelli enjoys yoga, blogging for GenPink, and attending sports games. Connect with her on Twitter, @NelliTokleh.

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