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  • The Swing Agency

5 Platforms to Become Familiar with Before Your First Internship

Updated: Mar 24, 2023

Photo Courtesy of Unsplash

As a Public Relations student starting your first internship, it can often be helpful when you are familiar with the various platforms used in the industry. With so many options and platforms available, it can often be difficult to find ones to focus on. So, let's dive into the top five PR platforms to know for your first internship.

1. Cision

This photo shows the dashboard for the social media analysis and social listening features on Cision.

Cision is one of the “big names” that you will most likely hear throughout your public relations internship and beyond. It offers a range of tools that can help to manage media relations, find influencers, track media coverage, and analyze data. This database helps professionals look for bloggers, journalists, and influencers relevant to the campaign/topic at hand. Cision is an essential tool for any internship or position you may land in the future. Knowing how and when to use it can be a valuable skill when it comes to landing and mastering your first internship.

This screenshot shows the homepage on Muck Rack for finding journalists, bloggers, and media outlets.

Similar to Cision, Muck Rack is a platform that gives professionals the tools they need to connect with relevant journalists and media outlets around the globe. This integrated platform is often used by interns and PR professionals to send pitches, create media lists, find contact information, monitor engagement, and much more. Muck Rack lets you pitch journalists and media outlets from within the platform. It also provides you with journalists and publications you plan to target in turn allowing you to have the necessary information to compile media lists and mailing lists, for example. Muck Rack helps you connect with journalists, pitch your stories more effectively, and measure the impact of your campaigns.

This screenshot shows the formatting of a typical HARO email, the queries and topics are separated into 8 different categories with one being shown here.

Help a Reporter Out (HARO) is a platform that connects journalists with potential sources for their stories. HARO sends out daily emails to sources, containing requests from journalists for information, quotes, or expert opinions on various topics. In terms of an internship, interns can learn how journalists source their stories, the types of stories they cover, and how to effectively pitch a story idea to the proper person. Using HARO can streamline the process of finding relevant journalists and bloggers to pitch.

4. Slack

Photo Courtesy of Slack

This image shows the typical slack setup, with different channels on the left side bar, as well as the conversation within the “marketing-team” channel.

Slack is a communication platform that makes communicating and collaborating with team members easier. It can be used for sharing files, ideas, or just to have a regular conversation. In an internship setting, it is good to be familiar with Slack as it may be used to communicate with coworkers, supervisors, and teammates. Being familiar with Slack allows for you to be well organized, up-to-date, and responsive to any communications sent through the channel.

5. Canva

Above is the Canva home page which displays a variety of project types, templates, and the user’s recent designs.

Canva is a graphic design platform that lets users create professional looking designs sourced from templates or from scratch. Using Canva, you can create social media posts, flyers, newsletters, social media banners, presentations, and much more. Utilizing Canva in an internship can ease the, sometimes challenging, task of creating custom eye-catching designs and posts for any type of campaign. Canva can help an intern build valuable design skills that can be useful in future projects and careers.

Overall, becoming familiar with these five platforms will help you excel in any internship. While you may not always use all of these platforms in your future positions, being familiar with them builds professional success.

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