Esports job spotlight: PR/marketing (plus tips from a PR guru)
Companies or teams will always be looking to grow their fanbase and get maximum exposure, and PR and marketing executives can help them do just that. We provide an overview and ask Indigo Pearl MD Caroline Miller for the inside story...
What is PR?
Public relations is all about managing the flow of information from a specific organisation to the public. PR executives will look to secure positive coverage with publications and other influencers in order to grow the company's reputation.
Strong coverage can help grow the company's business, increase their fanbase and improve the general perception people have towards the brand.
PR officers or executives can work internally or at an external agency. They will work closely with journalists, publications, companies and influencers in their specific field, and may be required to write press releases, arrange conferences and schedule announcements for maximum awareness.
An example PR agency in the games industry is Indigo Pearl.
MD Caroline Miller says: "Our company provides two separate but interlinked services within the games industry. We build and maintain global press sites for the likes of Ubisoft, Sony PlayStation and Activision, and we do PR for a host of clients that includes huge publishers, small indies and of course we have clients in the esports sector as well."
What is marketing?
It's similar to public relations, but marketers will usually have a budget that can be used on advertising.
The overall aim is to promote a business and increase sales of its products and services.
In esports, for example, a brand might want to advertise with streaming platforms or esports teams in order to market its products to the 18-24 gamer demographic.
Marketing departments will often look after a wide range of areas, from social media to sponsorships, partnerships, brand image, slogans, adverts and more.
How can you break into PR?
"You need to know your sector and work hard!" Caroline Miller states. "But you also need to know your weaknesses and not misrepresent yourself to your clients, you'll get caught out in the end and the games industry is pretty small!
"The games industry moves very fast so staying relevant is key. We tend to hire people who are gamers with a good attitude, rather than people with traditional PR backgrounds.
"We can teach people PR but we can't teach them a love and appreciation of gaming and a good work ethic - they need to bring that to the table themselves."
Caroline goes on: "Read everything. Always do a bit more than needed - the problem with PR is that people tend to do the bare minimum, send a press release, send the code out, start to think outside the box there might be one small extra 'thing' that can really help your campaign take off.
"Have respect for your clients and consumers, this will really shine through."
What can you expect to earn?
There isn't a set ballpark for PR as the range of positions within that job title can go from very junior right up to C-Suite level.
According to Prospects.ac.uk, the average salary for a PR assistant is around £18,000 to £20,000. PR officers can earn around £22,000 to £28,000, while experienced PRs can earn upwards of £40,000.
At the very top end, senior PR management salaries can vary from £40,000 to more than £100,000.
What are the hours like?
Caroline Miller says: "The hours can be long - I'm not going to lie!
"Don't get into PR if you want a 9 to 5 job! There are deadlines, events and the odd crisis to keep you busy. No two days are the same."