For many aspiring (and current) PR pros, the world of sports communications seems like the promised land. What could be better than finding a job where you get to work with your favorite athletes and sports teams? On January 9, PPRA hosted a panel discussion where communications representatives from Philadelphia’s biggest sports teams shared insider stories and advice about what it is like to do PR in the world of professional sports.
Bonnie Clark of the Philadelphia Phillies, Zack Hill of the Philadelphia Flyers, and Michael Preston of the Philadelphia 76ers answered questions from the audience and moderator Ike Richman of Comcast-Spectacor and the PPRA Hall of Fame. A few of the key takeaways included:
- There’s no such thing as a typical day in sports communications. This applies to almost anyone who works in PR, but for those in the sports world, the tasks thrown their way really run the gamut. They can be faced with staffing changes, charity activities, winning (or losing) streaks, player controversies, and more at any given time.
- It’s not all about the athletics. Obviously statistics and the team’s win/loss record are an important part of doing PR for a sports team, but they aren’t everything. Every professional sports team is also a business, so there are always other components for the PR pros to worry about.
- The line between fan and PR pro is a thin one. When working for a sports team, it can be hard to keep your “fan side” and your “professional side” separate, but it is a necessity. If you can’t respect the line between these two, a career in sports communications may not be for you.
For more insight from the sports communications panel, take a look at this Storify which captures tweets from event attendees.