From The Rock

PR professionals are a latte like coffee

By | January 29, 2020

 

If you are what you drink, then I am undoubtedly coffee. The truth of the matter is this – I am a thirsty person. I have two cups with me at all times, alternating sips between ice cold water and piping hot coffee. This lifestyle choice is not great for my teeth, but it is good for the soul. 

As I sip and savor my brew, I often drift into thought about the personality of my coffee. Something about a latte feels different from a cold brew. It’s not just about taste – the way you drink them is different, the vessel they’re served is different, and the situations in which you choose them are different. The art of coffee brewing and serving bestows upon each drink a unique personality. This is similar to PR professionals, who span industries and professional tendencies, meeting the needs of clients across the globe. 

You might be thinking, “That’s a little much.” Well, you’re not wrong. But this thought process and content choice come with precedence! Two years ago inspired by a hearty Malbec, I outlined how PR is like a glass of fine wine. Today, I’ll draw caffeinated correlations between coffee-based beverages and the PR professionals who enjoy them.

Black Coffee

The PR professional at a midsize firm.

I’m biased, and I’m unafraid to admit it. I’m a black coffee drinker because I appreciate the versatility. Add sugar if you want, pour in a dash of milk if it suits you or savor the rich flavor plain. The versatility and flexibility of this beverage correlates perfectly with the midsize PR firm. They can be what you need them to be and do what you need them to do, and there is something lovely about that. 

Cold Brew

The PR major and your company’s communication intern. 

Inexperienced and full of vigor, PR students and interns are the cold brews of the PR world. Cold brew is newer to the scene, like the PR intern, but it’s generally well accepted. Much like black coffee, cold brew represents a world of opportunities, similar to those facing new professionals. But you have to work a little harder to make it taste good.

Americano

The public relations professor.

For those unfamiliar, an Americano is a shot of espresso and a whole bunch of water. That’s how I see PR professors – a shot of experience and 20 years of academia. There are undoubtedly ample exceptions, but I had some PR teachers whose professional experience was significantly lacking. Thus, I graduated college with four pages of The Elements of Style committed to memory and no idea what to actually do with a press release after I wrote it.

One of those mocha/caramel more-milkshake-than-coffee monstrosities 

The advertising professional who throws in “PR services” on the side. 

Let’s call a spade a spade. I’d argue that anyone who orders a white chocolate mocha does not actually want a cup of coffee – they want a milkshake with a kick. Ultimately, it’s a masquerade, much like marketing and advertising professionals who claim they can provide PR support. Go for the real thing – it’s got a lot less sugar and will go down smoothly.