Marketing Report: PR - The vital statistics

The job of PR agencies has changed dramatically over recent years.

The proliferation of consumer-generated web content and online communities has shifted brand communication away from an exclusive focus on traditional media channels. Here you will find data on the best-performing agencies, their levels of growth, and attitudes toward the evolving role of the industry.


In 2006, Frank pulled in an impressive £1.6m haul of new business and posted a 33% increase in fee income on the previous year. Eye-catching campaigns for HP Sauce saw the agency fight to 'Save the proper British cafe'. Having published a survey illustrating the demise of the institution, it organised a petition, distributed brown wristbands and encouraged HP to set up a 'fighting fund' to subsidise cafes in trouble. From a budget of £42,000, the coverage Frank generated was equivalent to an estimated £1.5m in advertising value. Trade orders for HP Sauce rose 16% in the month following the campaign's launch.

Source: Marketing Agency of the Year 2006


Specialising in fashion, lifestyle, luxury and consumer PR, Exposure nearly doubled its fee income in 2006, growing it by 91% to reach £6.3m. Chief executive Raoul Shah put much of this down to growth from existing clients, and about 20% from new business wins. The agency has set up offices in the US, allowing it to work more extensively in the UK and Europe with clients such as Dr Martens and Sony. Integration has also been key, illustrated in its work for Pretty Polly, which included a 64-foot 'Stairway to heaven' billboard in West London. Sports and music work also grew, with new teams working on projects around last year's FIFA World Cup for official England kit supplier Umbro.

- 55% of agency, in-house and freelance PRs think their fellow practitioners are 'incapable' of performing comprehensive online PR campaigns

- 90% said that online coverage had become more important to their organisation or clients in the past 12 months

Source: webitpr

- 46% of web users said their awareness of brands increases if they see information about them online

- 55% of respondents identified brands getting it wrong online. These included the use of fake bloggers, such as the blogs created by Edelman for Wal-Mart

Source: Shiny Red - 'Effective Online PR: helping brands succeed through new media'


Corporate communications HSBC Hill & Knowlton
Financial PR Standard Life n/a
(arts/leisure/tourism) Expedia Red Consultancy
Consumer relations Eidos Taylor Herring
Public sector Norfolk County Fox Murphy
Business/trade Remote XT Primal PR
Corporate responsibility BT Trimedia Harrison Cowley
Not for profit Royal British Amazon PR/The SPAway/
Legion Zebra Sponsorship
Integrated campaigns BHF n/a
Best use of new media DSGi New Media Maze
Crisis comms Southern Water n/a
Broadcast Crisis Unity/Jet & Co
Healthcare Bayer Schering Euro RSCG Biss Lancaster
Pharma Levitra


Agency Fee income Fee income Change
2006(pounds) 2005(pounds) (%)

1 Exposure Promotions 6,358,404 3,326,250 91.2
2 Four Communications 5,711,172 4,093,790 39.5
3 Waggener Edstrom 4,381,315 3,168,886 38.3
4 Hotwire 4,536,738 3,377,103 34.3
5 Cake 4,647,000 3,506,000 32.5

Source: Marketing PR Leagues 2007, from PR Week's Top 150


Agency Fee income Fee income Change
2006(pounds) 2005(pounds) (%)

1 Tonic Life Comms 2,308,968 1,223,075 88.8
2 Freshwater 3,075,614 1,641,943 87.3
3 Virgo Health PR 3,109,866 1,891,652 64.4
4 Resolute Comms 3,866,415 2,449,930 57.8
5 The Television Cons. 2,418,299 1,547,072 56.3

Source: Marketing PR Leagues 2007, from PR Week's Top 150

- Do you think the FSA was right to call for a code on how PRs behave when dealing with financial information?

Yes: 93%

No: 7%

- Are you active on Facebook or any other social networking website?

Yes: 26%

No: 74%

- Do you think that new media such as blogging fundamentally alter PR practice?

Fundamentally: 17%

Substantially: 62%

Hardly at all: 21%

- How do you normally issue press releases?

By email: 77%

Online: 4%

By courier: 1%

By fax: 0%

All four: 18%

Source: CIPR President's panel (200 members and Fellows)

- For further reading, contact the Chartered Institute of Public Relations on 020 7766 3333 or visit


Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Brand Republic Jobs

subscribe now


Oasis #springasmile digital campaign gets people doing good deeds
Coca-Cola: 'Don't approach bloggers with a fait accompli'
Tesco CMO Matt Atkinson: 'It is so important not to stereotype mothers'
McDonald's gives Ronald a new look ahead of global 'Fun times' social media push
In pictures: BrewDog opens first craft beer shop BottleDog for 'beer aficionados'
Facebook ad revenue leaps $1bn as it invests in targeting
Malteser or Maltesers? Mars takes Hershey trademark dispute to court
Apple Q2 profits top $10bn as iPhone sales soar
Lynx tells men not to leave love to fate
HBO captures awkwardness of watching sex scenes with parents
Primark to open first US stores with Boston chosen as flagship location
Marketing spend on the up but a reality check is needed before celebrating
Top 10 ads of the week: Jackpotjoy and BT Broadband fend off Kevin Bacon
Lidl beats Tesco to 10m Facebook fans
Center Parcs ad banned for encouraging parents to take kids out of school
Coca-Cola, Cadbury and Amazon named top brands for targeting youth market
Leaked document shows Nokia to be rebranded as Microsoft Mobile
Nike lays-off hardware staff in move that casts doubt on future of FuelBand
Greenpeace says save the bees or humans will die
What brands need to know about changes to VAT and online downloads in 2015
Jimmy Savile victims urged to claim compensation in new ad campaign
UKIP launches biggest  ad campaign and stirs up 'racist' accusations
Apple boss Tim Cook provides voiceover on ad touting firm's renewed green commitments
John Lewis walks consumers through its history to celebrate 150 years of business
Waitrose boosts content strategy with 'Weekend Kitchen with Waitrose' C4 tie-up
Hottest virals: Cute puppies star in Pedigree ad, plus Idris Elba and Fruyo
Amnesty International burns candles to illuminate new hope
Tom of Finland's 'homoerotic' drawings made into stamps
Toyota achieves the impossible by calming angry Roman drivers
YouTube reveals user habits to appeal to 'older' marketers