more than ever, it pays to go green. The ethical goods business
has bucked the trend of the recession, growing by almost a fifth
in the UK since 2009, reflecting a growing sense of social
responsibility and concern for the environment.
We are as responsible as
any other industry for ensuring our impact is a positive one,
and it has never been more important for us to be working with
ethical and sustainable brands, those who put the three ps's –
people, profit and planet at the heart of what they do.
Guyer is the Founder and CEO of
Greenhouse PR. With a background in consumer PR at one of
London’s top agencies, she decided seven years ago to move to an
organic farm in the country and establish her own ethical PR
Here Anna gives her tips for working in PR for good causes ...
1) Look for
in-house positions in charities or NGOs. Nowadays,
not-for-profit organisations have large and well-established
press offices and PR teams. Agency experience, and the training
and work ethic often developed through this route, is often
highly valued by in-house recruitment teams.
2) Do voluntary work or an internship to gain
some experience in the Third Sector before making the leap. This
shows commitment to good causes and your communications savvy
will be extremely valuable to a not-for-profit, particularly one
that cannot afford PR support. A small charity without much of
an in-house team (if any) will also give you the opportunity for
real autonomy and creative strategic input.
3) Work for a PR agency with charity / public sector
clients and a strong ethical code. More and more
agencies are, like Greenhouse PR, becoming choosier about the
clients they will work with and about their methods. Ethical PR
is about more than just working on charity campaigns. It is also
about ensuring that the values of your client or organisation
are seen through in the work you do for them, and that you
maintain an honest and principled approach to your campaigns.
This includes, if you’re working on environmental campaigns,
staying well-clear of ‘green-washing’!
4) Go freelance and choose your own clients and
campaigns! Organisations with a social purpose will
often have small budgets and are therefore attracted to hiring
single consultants with fewer overheads.
5) Make friends with journalists and editors
who share your passion for the cause. Unlike in the consumer
sector, issues based campaigns are less about wining and dining
and more about finding writers who are truly ‘on side’ and
building long term relationships.
6) Be prepared to
take a pay cut. Realistically, you might not get the
salary you’d expect in the consumer/corporate world but the
other pay offs (like resting easy in your bed at night!) should
compensate for this.
Anna Levy is an issues-based PR specialist with a passion for
and a background working with government departments and
She freelances for ethical communications agency
and is also a host at
The Hub Islington.
Contact Anna Guyer at
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