Hi, my name is Grace White, a senior in Advertising on the Copywriting track graduating from Temple University in the spring. Over the 2022 Fall semester I’ve had the opportunity to work remotely as Copywriting Intern for VIPR Agency, a luxury communications firm in New York City. VIPR specializes in Press, Public Relations and Event Planning. My boss and the founder of VIPR Agency, Solenne Vervisch, is native to France. Her French influence on luxury branding to clients is what makes VIPR stand out. The agency’s clientele is based both in the US and international locations such as Brazil and France.
The agency is small. Solenne has worked with freelancers rather than hiring employees since the pandemic. She supervises all of my work as she’s the only member of her company. Each work day, Solenne sends me daily missions to complete over email. Throughout my work day, I email or text her to ask questions or get feedback, then at the end of every day, I email her everything I completed via hyperlinking. Each Wednesday, we have a Zoom meeting to check up and discuss future missions. I’m responsible for clipping articles our clients are mentioned in, writing press releases, pitches, and newsletters for clients, creating PowerPoint proposals for clients’ events, engaging on Instagram, among other assignments
I’m glad that I made the decision to apply to a PR firm as a Copywriting Intern to get marketing experience outside of the scope of advertising. As this is my first internship, I haven’t had experience working for an advertising firm yet.
Even without that experience, I can identify some key differences and similarities between PR and Advertising:
- Writing is more formal
When I write material for clients, I use correct grammar at all times and the subject matter of the material is always about real people and events. Advertising by comparison often uses imaginary characters and places to promote client goods and services.
- Clientele is more personal
In my internship position I often write press releases about clients to make their work appealing to journalists. Because of that, I write about clients on a more human-to-human level. For example, I recently wrote a biography for the chef of a restaurant called, Frevo, which is one of our clients. I was assigned to update Frevo’s press materials after he won a Michelin Star for the restaurant. In advertising, there is more of a focus on the brand itself than the people who work for it.
- Creativity is Utilized Differently
In Advertising, the sky’s the limit when it comes to brainstorming creative ideas for ads. In PR, I’ve noticed that being creative is different in that the ideas we suggest to clients must be able to be realistically executed. To elaborate, any idea can be used for Advertising and it does not need to be real because of modern technology. However, PR requires ideas and materials that are actionable.
The skills I’ve learned being an Advertising major and Social Media Manager provided me with confidence to enter the PR space. The experience this position has given me is invaluable as it has given me a taste of the PR side of marketing. I was able to build upon my abilities through gaining exposure to generating buzz for clients through journalists, clipping articles and tracking impressions, event planning, and writing in different brand voices and templates. At VIPR, I learned how to write high quality press materials that have been sent to luxury clients. I’m grateful for the time I spent as Copywriting Intern for VIPR Agency; I can move forward in my career knowing that I have interest in both Advertising and Press Relations and I can execute both.