by Olivia Pearson
October 28 was a Friday to remember at Marx Layne, a public relations agency in Farmington Hills, Michigan. What was scheduled as a tour became more of a fluid conversation between Marx Layne’s PR veterans and the aspiring professionals from Wayne State’s PRSSA.
For nearly 30 years, Marx Layne has served as one the Midwest’s leading full-service, privately owned PR agencies. They have provided results-oriented strategies for clients such as McDonald’s, Nestle Waters, Bank of America, Metro Detroit’s Arts, Beats & Eats Festival, and The Ambassador Bridge, to name a few.
At Marx Layne, the success of the company relies heavily on the interdependence of its members. This powerhouse of an agency runs off the fuel of teamwork and collaboration. Their office consists of multi-dimensional team players who believe in plus-one skill sets.
From the distribution and exchange of business cards, to the LinkedIn connections so quickly being made, employees at Marx Layne offered attendees support, as well as some industry tips and advice.
Senior Vice President Alan Unchurch explained the benefits of learning more digital skills which the industry is seeking to utilize. This will help one stand out from the vast pool of applicants when trying to get one’s foot in the door.
President and co-founder Michael Layne told students that PR professionals need, first and foremost, to be salesmen. They must also have a passion for curiosity in business and be compelling writers.
“It is important that you know how to deliver messages that result in your audience feeling, thinking or responding in your intended outcome,” Layne said.
He also mentioned that there is a science to communication in the digital age, and that knowledge in SEO, Google analytics and AdSense can be a valuable asset.
Partner Mike Szudarek shared words on what it takes to land an internship and employment at Marx Layne. He stated that anyone who has had any political campaign volunteer experience, previous agency work or prior employment in a corporate communications department are the candidates he considers above all.
“It shows that you know how to multitask and take on multiple projects at a time, which is what we frequently do here in the office,” Szudarek said.
Marx Layne is a public relations powerhouse. Their insight was specific and extremely helpful. This tour and others alike are vital when it comes to guidance in the public relations industry. The networking and exchange of information that occurs prepares aspiring professionals for similar interactions in their post baccalaureate careers.
About The Author: Olivia Pearson serves as a self-contracted, entry level, public relations consultant. She is currently a junior with a major in public relations. Olivia is passionate about gender-neutral communication in the workforce, arts and community. Beyond advocacy and research, she is developing a cosmetic line focused on the promotion of gender-neutrality. After college, she plans on getting her master’s degree at LIM or FIT, where she will continue to work with clients in the entertainment and fashion industry.