Wednesday, December 09, 2009

PR agencies gear up for growth: Survey

Public relations consultancies are gearing up for robust growth in the years to come. Increasing profits and headcounts are expected in 2010.

Top global PR consultancy heads are convinced the industry has turned the corner, reports Gemma O'Reilly in PRWeek. “The latest PRCA PR Leaders' Panel showed confidence returning to the PR market after a troubled 2009,” according to the report. “Some 84 per cent of agency heads expected an increase in staff numbers, while 88 per cent predicted higher turnover and 82 per cent expected more new business.”

Major marcoms groups WPP, Omnicom and Interpublic all recently reported third-quarter year-on-year revenue drops in their PR divisions. But steep share price rises over the year, especially for the PR-centric groups, indicate that investors retain confidence in the industry. Several experts share their views:

Media analyst Jonathan Barrett at Singer Capital Markets: Share price improvements have been driven by the thought that they are not heading into the abyss like last year. Conditions remain uncertain but people are generally confident.

Hill & Knowlton Global Chairman and CEO Paul Taaffe: 2009 had been a challenging year, but we are optimistic about 2010. Recovery will take place at different speeds across different geographies and sectors. Brand and reputation will be increasingly influenced by online consumers, so we expect a continuing shift in marketing spend from traditional advertising into digital and PR.

Edelman President and CEO Richard Edelman: This is the first recession in which PR outperformed advertising. We are now seen as a critical asset in re-establishing trust in business. 2010 will see more global consolidation such as Ketchum Pleon or MS&L and Publicis.

Weber Shandwick Global CEO Harris Diamond: This year was better than expected. Our largest clients helped us because they did not cut back like they have in previous recessions. We are expecting a good year in technology, consumer and healthcare. We expect business to improve in 2010.

RK Swamy Media Group’s invaluable Media Market Guide

The 12th edition of RK Swamy Media Group’s Media Market Guide India 2009 has been released. The Guide is a ‘handy reference book for media and advertising professionals”.

“The Market Guide offers all the relevant information on markets and media in a crisp and easy-to-use format,” according to exchange4media. “Be it market demographics, audience description, information on various media, down to even a very succinct section on penetration and usage of products, the Guide has it all. In addition, important information compiled from various sources is given in the form of snippets for quick reference.”

R K Swamy BBDO Senior Advisor P R P Nair is quoted as saying, “The pocket guide is always useful when you need to access information during meetings with your clients and colleagues. With this thought in mind, we came up with the concept of a pocket handbook over a decade ago. The growing demand for the Guide each year has encouraged us to improve on the content and the value it brings to its users. It encompasses our 15 years of deep understanding and experience of the market and media scenario.”

RK Swamy BBDO makes this Media Market Guide available free of cost to clients and media owners. Professionals interested in this may write from their official mail ID with their names, designation and phone number to: