Go-to PR tips from Erica Donerson

By: Ayana King

We are proud to feature PRSA Detroit member Erica Donerson, who is the director of Government & External Affairs at Wayne County Airport Authority (WCAA). We reached out to Erica to learn about her industry experience and hear her tips for enjoying a long and successful career in Public Relations.

Erica began her professional career in journalism but fell in love with public relations as a Northwestern University freshman during an internship with the Muscular Dystrophy Association. She credits her passion for storytelling as the reason behind the ease of transition and says, after a decade in television news, PR was a natural fit.

In her new role at WCAA, overseeing Community Outreach, Customer Service and Communications, in addition to Government Affairs, Erica has experienced first-hand how cutbacks in the newsroom directly impact PR efforts. With the steady decline of beat reporters, it has become increasingly important for PR practitioners to do their due diligence, research and fact check, and write compelling, creative pitches.

The industry is always evolving. Still, tried and true practices never go out of style. Here, Erica shares her go-to tips to help you manage your PR career.

Be honest – no matter what: PR practitioners are known for their ethical standards. Reputation is everything; never compromise your integrity.

Be inquisitive: Always ask questions. A good PR pro stays in-the-know and is curious.

Keep learning: Like many industries, PR has changed over the last 20 years. Stay ahead by reading, and attending workshops and conferences, like those hosted by PRSA Detroit.

Share your knowledge: There’s enough success to go around! Collaborating with other industry professionals is a great way to gain new perspective, and often opens up new career opportunities. Share what you know and watch your career continue to grow!

The PRSA Detroit Diversity Committee encourages opportunities to meet and network with our diverse community of professionals. Our potential is limitless, especially when we make a conscious effort to support the collaborative culture the PR and communications field is known for. If you have a story to share, contact Ayana King or Lisa Peers.

Picture provided by Erica Donerson