Walk the Publicity Catwalk! Essential Tips to Land Your First Job in Fashion PR

Written by
Rebecca Smith

Jan 15, 2019

Jan 15, 2019 • by Rebecca Smith

Do you have a passion for fashion and public relations?

If yes, you can blend both passions into a career. You can become a fashion PR professional or fashion publicist.

This career will give you the opportunity to dive into the sparkle of the fashion industry. You'll be tasked with shaping the public image of fashion brands.

However, passion alone isn't enough to help you land this job. You also need a combination of relevant education, the right occupational skills, and a relentless determination to succeed.  

Eager to learn more?

Here is a complete lowdown on how to get your first job in fashion PR.

Know What a Fashion PR professional Does

It's one thing to desire to work in fashion PR, and it's another thing to have the ability to do the job.

This is why it's crucial to understand the specific roles of a fashion publicist before starting to prepare yourself for employment. It's not uncommon for people to break into fashion PR, only to leave the profession because they hit a work-life balance snag.

In a nutshell, fashion publicists are the forces behind the public reputation of various fashion brands. They craft the messages that define these brands' public images.

There is the glamour part, which involves attending cocktail parties, red carpet events, and fashion shows. This means you've to be willing to work long hours.

Then there is the not-so-glamorous part. People in fashion PR spend a sizeable amount of their time behind computers crafting press releases, responding to emails, and booking interviews with media outlets.

Fashion PR is a round-the-clock job. In today's social media world, a PR crisis can occur at any time. You always have to be available to respond to a crisis and calm the waters.

Are you up for the challenge? You're good to proceed!

Get a Bachelor's Degree

The fashion PR industry is fiercely competitive. With most job seekers striving to catch the attention of the top fashion brands, having a proper education will keep you ahead of the pack.

At a minimum, you need a bachelor's degree.

Although you can pursue any arts degree, it's advisable to go for a program that'll give you the best educational preparation for a job in fashion PR. A good example is a Bachelor of Arts degree in fashion communication and promotion. You'll learn about fashion writing, brand development, fashion marketing, how to do PR for fashion brands, and much more.

If you're unable to get into a fashion communication program, don't beat yourself up. You can also pursue a bachelor's in public relations, communication, or liberal arts.

Intern in the Fashion Industry

Most undergraduate programs will require you to complete an internship before graduation.

Take this as an opportunity to knock on the doors of the fashion industry. If you really want a job in fashion PR, settle for nothing short of an internship in a fashion house or fashion PR agency.

Yes, internship positions are usually limited, but remember we said you need a relentless determination to succeed.

A fashion PR internship will help you gain some real-world job experience and give you a chance to develop professional connections with industry professionals.

Develop the Skills Required to Be a Competent Fashion Publicist

While a bachelor's degree will equip you with essential knowledge, there are some skills you'll need to nurture on your own.

For instance, all successful fashion publicists have strong networking skills. The job involves attending events and making connections with lots of people, so you must be able to effortlessly strike a rapport with strangers. A good way to develop these skills is to attend fashion workshops and trade shows while still in college.

Analytical skills are also a must-have. Because the fashion industry is always changing, you must be able to analyze fashion and cultural trends and forecast how they will affect your employer's public image.

Good problem-solving, organizational, oral presentation and multi-tasking skills also play a central role in the success of a fashion PR professional.  

Know How to Hunt for Your First Job in Fashion PR

Armed with the right occupational knowledge and skills, you're ready to head out and hunt for a job.

Obviously, sending your resume and cover letter to various fashion brands is the natural first step. While we don't discourage you from doing this, sending cold submissions to potential employers isn't the best way to land a job in fashion PR.

This is the time to leverage on the industry connections you've built. Reach out to your network and ask them to let you in on any current job openings in fashion houses or established fashion PR agencies. You can also ask them to put in a good word for you when they speak to your potential employers.

As you do this, keep polishing up your LinkedIn profile. Recruiters in the fashion industry are tech-savvy individuals who rely on such platforms to find the best talent in the market.

Also, how professional-looking are your other social media pages?

If there are photos of your drinking binges on Facebook or old political tweets on your Twitter page, clean up. Nobody is going to trust you with their public image if you don't give a hoot about yours. You need to maintain a polished look at all times.

Your First Job in Fashion PR Awaits You

Bright lights, a lucrative salary and celebrity life are all potential rewards of a job in fashion PR. However, only the best publicists climb all the way up and enjoy these rewards.

Lucky for you, we have shared insider tips that'll help you land your first job and set off your quest to reach the top. Get the right education, develop the relevant occupation skills, never stop networking, and know how to look irresistibly appealing to employers.

All the best and keep reading our careers blog for more insights.