PR Grows 4% in 2009 While Advertising Suffers.

According to the Economist today:

According to data from Veronis Suhler Stevenson (VSS), a private-equity firm, spending on public relations in America grew by more than 4% in 2008 and nearly 3% in 2009 to $3.7 billion. That is remarkable when compared with other forms of marketing. Spending on advertising contracted by nearly 3% in 2008 and by 8% in the past year. PR’s position looks even rosier when word-of-mouth marketing, which includes services that PR firms often manage, such as outreach to bloggers, is included. Spending on such things increased by more than 10% in 2009.

One global PR group, IPREX, of which our friends at FinemanPR are a member, saw a 14% increase in revenue.

PR tends to do well in recessions because it requires less capital outlay than big media campaigns, but its hit-or-miss nature is less effective than any well-executed brand ad campaign. If the story doesn't get picked up, nobody sees it. Plus, they don't usually let you put your logo or a tagline in a news story. OK, so maybe I'm just a little bit jealous.

Hey, Michael Fineman! Can you lends us a couple of percentage points?


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