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To do public relations well you need to have a critical mind -- to develop compelling content. You need to be able to see fresh angles and points of view in a company, product, or service story so that benefits to the reader come across in all their glory, without writing a sell sheet in a press release. Today, you need a whole set of new skills. With new media, you need to understand the digital space a lot better, how to integrate marketing communications, the value of search engine optimization (SEO), who is influential in the niche where your client is, how you set up listening posts, how to measure the results of your strategies, and be comfortable with new technologies. You also need to learn how to manage your client's expectations and deliver the hard message of putting skin in the game -- directly, or through you -- with your results. You may be called upon to be more than an adviser when it comes to managing communities, and helping in case of a crisis. To be good at all of this, you will become emotionally vested in the outcome. While new media work may take you to a whole new level, it presents some challenges: you need to build your own brand to demonstrate expertise without creating friction at work online you need to toe the company line, and disclose when you're doing that you're called to draw from your personality, along with your experience you're working... Continue »