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Public Relations

The Industry Today

The global public relations industry grew by 5 percent in 2018 over the previous year, to about $15 billion in revenue, according to findings from the Holmes Report’s 2019 Global PR Agency Rankings study. As of 2019, Holmes estimates the global PR agency industry to be about $15.5 billion. The top 250 PR agencies reported fee income of $12.3 billion in 2018, which was a slight increase over $11.7 billion in 2017. Companies that had strong performance in 2018 compared to 2017 included BlueFocus (up nearly 11 percent), Brunswick (up nearly 8 percent), Ogilvy (up nearly 10 percent), FleishmanHillard (up 6 percent), and Weber Shandwick (up 5 percent). The Holmes Report cites the strong growth is due to steadily strong years for some companies, and of note is Ogilvy's restructuring that brought PR and influencer work together. Brunswick and BlueFocus have also grown recently and become disruptors in the industry by moving to the top 10 agencies. The Holmes Report also noted, however, that a "disproportionately high number of firms chose not to report their revenue this year...[including] Instinctif Partners, Kreab, Rud Pedersen, Exposure, iris Culture, Maitland, TRACCS, RF/Binder, Peppercomm, Catalyst, Nebo, and ROI." Declining to report revenue is usually a sign that companies did not have a successful year.

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