Communications extend

Vedomosti,  6/17/2011

Experts of the The International Communications Consultancy Organisation (ICCO) have learned that the PR market has recovered from crisis and is growing again. Russia ranks among the top three in terms of growth.

The Russian PR market showed one of the largest growths by the end of 2010 yielding only to Brazil: agencies’ revenues increased 17% up to €124.2 million. Agencies’ fees in Brazil increased 23% up to €808.5 million. ICCO explains the growth by the economic development of these countries.

The Russian Public Relations Association (RASO), having interviewed top PR managers of almost 600 companies in eight key industries of the Russian economy, estimated a total PR budget of $1.66 billion (excluding companies which did not wish to disclose their budgets in addition to companies working in the public sector).

The world’s two largest markets for public relations – the US and the UK – both rebounded from a five percent decline in fee income in 2009 to a record recovery in 2010. US consultancies posted an average 11% increase in overall fee revenue (up to €3.846 billion), while the UK saw a 13% increase (up to €1.744 billion). Western European countries saw more modest growth or nearly unchanged conditions (from 1% to 3.5%), though the Nordic, Central and Eastern European countries fared better, with significant fluctuations ranging from 5% to 12%. For example, Belgium outperformed its neighbours with 10% growth, mostly driven by work for and around the European Parliament and Commission; however, Croatia and Ireland were seen with fees shrinking by nearly 15% due to public and private spending cuts in 2010.

Consultancies’ fees in Russia grew primarily due to increasing PR budgets, says Elena Fadeeva, Chairwoman of AKOS (representative company of ICCO in Russia), and General Director of Fleishman-Hillard Vanguard. Additionally, consultancies’ fees are on track for further growth, ICCO predicts. Russia, Brazil and India are each predicted to grow 20% by the end of 2011. According to Fadeeva, industries in Russia that will most actively increase demand for PR in FMCG are: the energy sector, the financial industry, healthcare, hi-tech and the governmental sector. According to statistics compiled by RASO, 37% of Russian companies are going to increase their PR budgets in 2011.

25 countries contribute to ICCO’s research. The association analyzes the current condition and the tendencies of the global PR sector and determines revenue trends on the PR market that is measured in total royalties of agencies forming ICCO. Last year, the total income of ICCO member companies amounted to €9.4 billion.

Which type of PR specialists is in more demand

For 2011, digital and social media services, corporate communications, crisis management and public affairs are reported by ICCO to be expanding the most.