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Tuesday 22 May 2018

Sephi Roberts, a second year BA (Hons) Public Relations and Communications student describes how she and other students on her course put their skills to the test, pitching  for a public relations campaign.

As part of our Digital PR unit, we were given the opportunity to pitch a one-year campaign to local agency Five By Five. They would be joined on the judging panel by the MD of Napier and CooperVision’s Assistant Brand Manager. Scary as it can be to present, it also provided us an invaluable chance to put everything we’d learned so far to the test.

Working in groups, we had to come up with a PR strategy for either Festival Place or CooperVision. My teammate Felicity and I pitched early in the unit for CooperVision and were thrilled when we got it – especially since I use their lenses myself! We felt like it gave us a unique customer insight which was really exciting to explore as we generated ideas.

A slide from Sephi and Felicity's presentation to CooperVision

Editing down our initial campaign report into a fifteen-minute presentation was a huge challenge, but one that everyone tackled fantastically. Watching each team’s work come to life as they communicated with the clients and each other was inspiring. Even though it was a competition to win the pitch, everyone was smiling encouragement the whole way through -  I can attest that not a single sabotage attempt took place!

Any of us could have won the client, so being chosen as Best Group was an amazing surprise. I’m so proud of the work we achieved between just the two of us. Our campaign focused on busting the myths around contact lenses and the client enjoyed the way we bounced off each other, which was exactly the dynamic we wanted to achieve to compensate for our smaller group.

Working with a live brief made all the difference. The focus on transferrable industry skills like presenting to real clients is what makes the unit (and the course) so worthwhile. I’m grateful for the opportunity and look forward to honing my pitching skills even further over the course of the rest of my degree.