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How to Build a PR Portfolio

Posted over 3 years ago by Paula De La Hey

In our previous article we talked about how to put together the perfect creative portfolio. This time we’re going to look at PR portfolios. The general principles remain the same, no matter what your area of specialisation: format, layout, telling a story, keeping it current, quality over quantity and so on. For our thoughts on this refer to our previous article.

For PRs of any level, there are a few specific dos and don’ts when it comes to crafting your portfolio. Here are our top tips:

  • A good portfolio should contain a variety of work to demonstrate writing, strategic thinking, and client service skills.
  • With the rapid rise of digital platforms and consumption in the past few years, the media landscape has gone through a seismic shift. Hiring managers are therefore increasingly looking for candidates to show experience of both on and offline PR experience where at all possible. Candidates who can demonstrate online and social media savvy will definitely be favoured.
  • The perfect PR portfolio should therefore include a variety of writing samples, from press releases, to web copy, social media campaigns, blogs and so on.
  • Each piece in your portfolio should have a brief summary with key information such as client, objective, audience and results. The aim is to briefly explain how each sample in your portfolio contributed to the PR campaign.
  • Use actual clippings and screen grabs as much as possible. For example, if you are showing a newspaper story, a clipping of the printed publication is best - original pieces help give context to how the piece was actually used.
  • Include a mix of work across a variety of clients. By Interchanging between industry sector, trade/consumer and so on, you keep your portfolio diverse and interesting.
  • If you’re keen to showcase your strategic capabilities, include a PR plan you’ve developed, along with the client’s objectives (be careful to omit any confidential information)
  • Proofread, then proofread again – a core part of your professional armoury is your ability to write. It therefore goes without saying that the cardinal sin of any PR is to present anything with spelling or grammatical errors.