The PR Trifecta: Growth, Profitability and Billing Rates Stalling 

In light of this solar eclipse this week, the constellations have started to align for the PR industry. But it’s not a pretty picture, with all the major financial indices down and little sign that the industry has started to make headways in order to reverse the declines. Just check out the tale of the…
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Peel the Layers to Locate New Niches

It’s an occupational hazard for PR firm owners looking for an edge with clients and prospects: the commoditization of marketing communications. Killer creative is all well and good, but it’s not hard to find. In a hypercompetitive marketplace, clients not only want effective marketing campaigns with solid returns. They want PR firm owners to make…
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Kraus: 3 Tips for PR Firms That Want to Promote Women, Spur Diversity

When Margery Kraus founded APCO Worldwide in 1984, women didn’t predominate the PR sector—as they do these days—so there was little to no chatter throughout the industry about why it’s important to promote female PR execs to the C-suite. “I had to fight in a different way when I built my own firm because everybody…
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India PR Market Beginning to Bloom

The India PR market continues to draw interest among U.S. firms with an eye on future growth and global expansion. Late last year, for example, Dentsu Aegis Network bought India-based Perfect Relations for an undisclosed price, while WE Communications, is currently in acquisition talks with Indian PR consultancy Avian Media, according to the Holmes Report. At the same time,…
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Gould Featured in ‘Future of PR’ Video

We continue to push online video content as a major priority for PR firms looking to grow their profitability and expand their clientele. When you consider the growing impact of online video content it’s little wonder that visual communications is starting to command both more budget and creative thinking among PR shops. Online video content,…
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How Should PR Firms Plan for the End Game?

(This article originally appeared in the June issue of  O’Dwyer’s) The PR M&A process is seldom easy. But as the public relations industry has evolved and become more complex, so too has the PR M&A process. When sellers sit down with buyers these days there are sharper and more difficult questions coming from both sides of…
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Online Video: Take Your Best Shot

PR firm owners know the scene. They land a new account and sit down with the buyer(s) for an initial strategy session. After exchanging niceties PR firm owners reach into their portfolio and offer a package of services that would best align with the client’s goals and/or financial objectives. Assuming budget is available PR executives…
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Agency M&A: Big Decision, Vital Questions

I had the privilege of speaking at the Public Relations Global Network‘s (PRGN) annual conference, which took place in Dallas, in late April. The presentation, titled “Agency Mergers and Acquisitions: What Works, What Doesn’t,” was well-received among the PR firm owners and C-level communications executives attending. During my presentation and afterward—when I had the opportunity…
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Women, Leadership and PR

It’s a gap throughout PR field that could seriously damage the industry’s reputation if it doesn’t change its tune. And fast. We refer to the increasing number of women working throughout the PR profession—among both middle managers and senior account executives—but not necessary in the C-suite. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, women hold…
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How to Integrate the Seller With the Buyer, Post-Sale

I am often asked why some mergers and/or acquisitions don’t go the way a buyer and/or seller originally thought. There are multiple reasons why a transaction may go awry, of course. For instance, the seller may have a different corporate philosophy from the buyer. Or there may be friction between the two sides regarding how…
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5 Employee Retention Strategies

(This blog post is excerpted from an article that originally ran on ZoomShift.com.) Do you have an employee turnover problem? Nearly 70 percent of organizations report that staff turnover has a negative financial impact due to the cost of recruiting, hiring and training a replacement employee, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Adding insult…
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Common Ground with Millennial PR Pros?

Oh, that pesky generation gap. It never fails to rear its complicated head. Take a recent survey revealing sharp differences between millennial communicators and the baby boomer/Gen X PR executives who manage them regarding a slew of workplace issues, including the willingness to take risks, grooming for management and leadership. The online survey, which was…
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