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Internship in Public Relations Department of an Advertising Agency Essay

Section I

1.1 Background

Internship is one of the essential parts required for the completion of MBA program. It is to provide first hand exposure to the students about the real work scenarios in business organizations. It allows students to imply their theoretical knowledge in the real workplace by enhancing their ability and confidence level in the dynamic business world. Besides, one of the objectives of this program is to enhance student’s interpersonal, communication, report writing skills as well as presentation skills and to understand different viewpoint of the staff and the customer of the organization.

1.2 Objective of the internship

The objectives of my internship at Prisma Advertising agency are:

To fulfill the requirement of MBA program of Pokhara University. To understand importance Public Relations in corporate world. To understand how public relations enhances brand image.
To comprehend successful events.

1.3 Placement

For the purpose of internship, the trainee was allowed to perform internship in the organization where she was actively working for past two years. The organization is an advertising agency named Prisma Advertising located in Kalikastha, Kathmandu. The internee had been working in Public Relations Department (PR) as an Executive.

1.4 Expected Learning
Experiencing the real life working environment
Expand the boundaries of theoretical learning
Develop better public relation skills with media as well as in corporate sector

Section II
Industry and Organization Profile

2.1 Industry Profile
There are no records of any kind that tell us about the origin and history of Nepali advertisements. The earliest form of advertising may thus be taken as the trumpet blowing tradition of kings and maharajas to disperse royal messages. The advent of Mass Communication in Nepal can be said to have been through such official proclamations, which were usually accompanied by the use of musical instruments like drums or trumpets. The age-old oral tradition of promotion by vendors selling their wares in the market can also be taken as another early form of advertising.

With the national daily Gorkhapatra churning out advertisements on a regular basis, the advertising sector caught momentum, and the next major development came in the form of an advertising agency, Laxman Upadhaya’s Nepal Advertisers. The main objective of the agency was to publish flashy and attractive advertisements in the print media. Three years later, following in the footsteps of Upadhaya, Keshav Lamichane started Nepal Printing and Advertising Agency owned by Keshav Lamichane. This agency held the accounts of prime clients like Janakpur Cigarette Factory, Royal Nepal Airlines Corporation and Nepal Bank Limited.

2.2 Prisma Advertising Profile

Prisma Advertising is the franchisee of Mathew and Ogilvy in Nepal. It is one of the most creative agencies which established in 1991. It is a full service office with team of 47 people which has been growing as creative leader and 360 degree brand stewardship. It provides wide range of services from media, branding, and sales promotion to advertisement. They continuously thrive to provide creative products by giving a consumer touch to what they deliver, also offer fully integrated marketing communication solutions as well as focus on building brand relationship with the consumers.

It has been awarded as The Best Agency of the Year 2004-05, 2005-06, 2006-07 & 2007-2008 (four years in a row). In addition to it also has won the only international advertising award for Nepal – “Bell Ringer 2000” from Johnson &Johnson, USA. Prisma approach to communication: These activities are part of the prisma advertisement agency which is provided to the clients according to the promotion they required for their products and services.

2.3 Importance of Public Relation Department

Why does Brand or an Organization need a Public Relation Department? Unless one is a celebrity, good public relation just does not happen on its own. It takes lots of skill and consistent hard work, over a period of time. It’s part art, part science and when practiced correctly the results can be very rewarding. Here are few reasons why Public Relations is important: Media
coverage increases credibility

Paid advertising increases name recognition; media relations increases credibility. When people read a story about the excellence of a particular organization in a newspaper or see a story praising the company on television, they are much more likely to have a favorable opinion of that particular organization.

Media coverage helps to attract “quality” prospects Because a public relations increases credibility, it helps to attract those who want the best. When people have heard of the organization or brand and have a favorable impression of it, it is easier to attract and hold their attention while the organization or the brand tell their story.

Media coverage makes you a player Coverage in important publications or on TV can make the organization or brand look much larger than it is.

Public relations help to avoid price competition If people believe that the particular brand is the best, they will understand why it is worth paying the price.

A public relations program stretches the marketing budget Because the media does not charge for news coverage, the relative cost of a good program is a lot less than for paid media or a direct mail campaign.

Best way to launch a brand Public relations are also considered by many as the best way to launch a brand or new product. When something is new the media often will write about it because of its news value.

Section III
Critical Analysis of Job Performed

3.1 Function of Public Relation Department

PR Department functions to maintain and enhance mutual understanding/relationship between its clients and public. The core responsibility of the PR Department is to build and protect the brand. PR communicates client’s views, objectives and purposes to the general mass and at the same time monitors feedback and correcting the public attitudes/ reactions. For this, department focuses on major areas:

Crisis Management: To avoid any crisis and its adverse effects to its clients, the PR Department prepares press releases and makes them public through media vehicle.

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR): Also known as corporate responsibility, corporate citizenship, responsible business and corporate social performance that forms of corporate self-regulation integrated into a business model. To fulfill these responsibilities the company’s want to conduct events, and any such social events are organized for the client by this department. For example: charity program. Further, they also create social awareness for NGOs and INGOs and other organizations working for the welfare of the society at discount rates.

Event Management: Various events such as press conference, product launching events etc. are organized either to provide new information or introduce a new product. In such events, various media houses, guests are invited and are provide with the press release which gives details about the event. Monitoring and tracking current scenario: Either it be country’s current happenings or competitor’s activities, PR Department tracks the entire essential data with the help of media and reports to the internal staff members as well as the client in daily basis as well as a monthly reports.

3.2 Activities Performed

The internee was part of a PR Team and there were five members in this team. Public Relation Head, Senior Public Relation Supervisor, Copy Writer and PR Executives are the designations of this team. The internee was working under direct assistance of Senior Public Relation Supervisor. Each team members had their specific task that they were assigned to and those were mentioned in their job description. Following were the job assigned to the intern.

1. Everyday internee had to make a daily update on country’s news update regarding political, business and social happenings and send it to the clients.

2. Track on competitor’s activities like press ad, news and send it to respective clients.

3. Make Share of Expense (SOE) respective to the competitor’s and send it to clients on monthly basis.

4. Make regular interactions with media as well as clients to enhance better public relation.

5. Make press releases, news articles on client’s activities and send it to media for the coverage.

6. Organized events like Press Conferences, Formal meetings with government bodies, and Cocktail parties as per the clients need.

7. Crisis management of the clients.

Bajaj Pulsar 200 NS Launch, Coca-Cola Inter-School National Football Tournament, Coca-Cola ‘Live Positively ‘and Western Union’s collaboration with Mercy Corps to empower 1200 women to be financially literate were some of the major events organized as an internee under PR Department. The major task of the PR Department during these events was to highlight the program as much as possible with the help of media as well as word of mouth publicity. Few of the coverage of these events are attached below.

Coverage of the Events
Bajaj Pulsar 200 NS launch

Coca-Cola Inter-School National Football Tournament

Coca-Cola ‘Live Positively’

Western Union’s collaboration with Mercy Corps

Activities Performed

Working as an intern in PR Department, internee had to face several crisis situations where various brand reputation damaging news were covered by newspapers and television. To tackle with those situations, crisis management was done. Few examples of Crisis Management are as follows:

Nepal Samachar Patra and Sagarmatha Television were continuously showcasing various news regarding faulty products of Bottler’s Nepal Limited. To surpass those negative news, internee with the PR team had undergone the crisis management by flowing the positive news of the company in The Kathmandu Post. This is a technique where PR people do not counter the negative news directly but highlights the positive aspect of the company, person or the brand to put the positive news in the top of the publics mind.

Negative News covered by Nepal Samachar Patra

Positive News published in The Kathmandu Post

3.3 Public Relation Department Analysis

As an internee under PR Department of an advertising agency,

3.4 Problem Identification and Solution Alternatives

As every best effort does have a loop hole, PR Department also has to face certain problems at times.

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