15 Sep 2016

The career you never considered… B2B PR

Henri Attan – Junior Account Executive at Spreckley

As a “millennial” (cue numberless articles on “10 ways your brand can appeal to millennials” and “Why millennials are completely different from any generation that have ever lived, like, ever”), I’m supposed to be breathlessly enthused with the “purpose” of my work. I’m “driven to change the world around me” whilst seeking “transcendental experiences” (my chakras hurt just writing that sentence). Which is why the blank expressions etched upon an a stranger’s face when I tell them I work in B2B PR perhaps makes a greater impression on me than it should.

B2B PR is by no means top of mind for most graduates as they seek to join the ranks of the gainfully-employed. The B2B part, in particular, leaves many either mystified or plain disinterested. This a great shame – for my experience in B2B PR (a grand total of four months) has left me convinced that it is a great way to accelerate your understanding of the business world, whilst being a lot of fun. An apprenticeship in business, if you’re feeling grandiose.

Ultimately, a B2B PR person has to develop an understanding of how businesses win. Unlike in the consumer world, where brands seek to appeal to an intangible swirl of emotions and attitudes – cool-ness, sex appeal, insecurity – selling a product or service to a business comes down to one core dynamic. Will this organisation, product, or service help my company to win?

Positioning an organisation in the media so that their “yes” to the above question resonates with their target audience is key. Doing so requires an understanding of where businesses feel pain, and where they could be guided towards opportunity. It requires insight into the key trends and changes shaping the business world, and an understanding of how these interact with real businesses. The narratives in the business and trade media don’t adhere to the restless search for the next ‘hit’ that dogs so much of the consumer media, and likewise writing a press release or pitching in B2B PR often requires getting to grip with complex business concepts and different markets.

Working in B2B PR, especially in the technology sector, means developing an understanding of the powerful undercurrents shaping our world. Most of us have a notion that the cloud is a mystical place where we can store our stuff without using physical storage space. Working for numerous cloud computing clients helped me to understand how this conceptual shift in how businesses operate has changed, well, everything. Every time you listen to Yeezy’s latest banger on Spotify to pass time whilst waiting for the bus, not only are you enjoying the benefits of cloud computing, you’re also enjoying the services of an (ex-)start-up that undoubtedly wouldn’t have been able to achieve its rapid growth without the use of cloud computing companies.

It isn’t for everyone, but for those looking to bring their creativity to work whilst fast-tracking their understanding of the business world, B2B PR offers a compelling career option, along with the chance to work with sophisticated and deeply driven business leaders.

If you’d like to find out more about working in B2B PR, feel free to contact us. Spreckley also runs an internship programme that provides a real-world insight into the world of B2B PR – if you’re interested, please flick an email over to [email protected].