When it comes to defining a communications professional, there are many routes you can take. But as the communications sector continually grows, you skill set has to as well. And as much as I’m very content with the PR career path I’ve chosen, there are definitely skills that are becoming more important and relevant in the communications field that I wish I had more expertise in. Here is the list of skills that I wish I had more proficient skills in and that are more commonly looked for n communications professionals today.
This is a must now for anyone looking to go the digital marketing route, but it is also something having a general knowledge base when working on digital projects. As someone who blogs and creates content, you want it to perform well, and having the SEO background is a science.
I wish I could say I designed the website you’re currently reading, but that is not the case. I know WordPress basics, and that gets me by, but that was something I learned through the experience of managing my personal site and managing content on four other websites. Meta tags, slashes, and plugins are all a part of the web language I wish I were more fluent in.
Adobe Creative Suite is a program every communications professional should own. Whether it’s fully designing images or properly sizing them for social media posts, the Creative Suites package has everything you would ever need for branding and designing purposes and having working knowledge of these programs is definitely a plus.
User Experience (UX)
User Experience or UX as it’s referred to is a very technical skill set that takes a lot of hard work. And in a digital day and age where communicators are constantly creating content, you want to make sure it’s going to be consumed in the best way possible. The layouts, details and formats of user experience on any kind of device is something that communicators need to take into consideration.
Project management Is one of those skills that as a PR professional, especially in an agency setting, you’re already doing, you just don’t realize it at times. No, you may not have the project management designation, but from step one of ideas and creating concepts all the way through to execution and follow-up is what defines project management and one of the key skills any communications professional needs to have when managing clients and tasks.
Fortunately, I love social media and was an early adapter to many platforms early on. But there are a lot of communicators out that don’t know or aren’t interested in using the many platforms that are out there. Social media has become another way to get your message out there and there is a lot of work that goes into managing social media accounts. Social media is a skillset communicators are expected to have. Whether you are using it for business or not, crafting messages for different platforms and speaking to and growing audiences to meet business goals are all becoming a part of a communicators role.
All of the skills I’ve mentioned above are also professions within the media landscape and it’s about having the working knowledge of these skills that will help communicators grow and adapt in a digital landscape. What are some of the other skills you are seeing in job descriptions or through networking that communications professionals will need to soon acquire?
Let’s discuss in the comment section below.