International News: Journalists in Latin Am use more PR fodder than in US

BUENOS AIRES: Latin American journalists - especially those based in Argentina - are using information culled from PR pros significantly more than their US counterparts. But that doesn’t mean that they are any more tolerant of the foibles of the profession’s practitioners, a survey of journalists in Latin American countries has found.

BUENOS AIRES: Latin American journalists - especially those based in Argentina - are using information culled from PR pros significantly more than their US counterparts. But that doesn’t mean that they are any more tolerant of the foibles of the profession’s practitioners, a survey of journalists in Latin American countries has found.

BUENOS AIRES: Latin American journalists - especially those based

in Argentina - are using information culled from PR pros significantly

more than their US counterparts. But that doesn’t mean that they are any

more tolerant of the foibles of the profession’s practitioners, a survey

of journalists in Latin American countries has found.



The survey noted that 82% of Argentine journalists use more information

from PR pros in their daily coverage than they did five years ago. By

comparison, only 29% of US journalists and 64% of the ’periodistas’ from

other Latin American countries did the same.



The survey, conducted last month in Latin America by BusinessWire and

the Argentine media audit firm Management Press, was a replica of the

PRWeek/BW US journalist survey published last September (PRWeek,

Sept.



20, 1999). The Argentine version of the study added 172 Latin American

journalists to the 977 polled in the US; 114 of the 172 respondents

hailed from Argentina, while the rest were from Brazil, Mexico, Chile,

Venezuela and Colombia.



Among other conclusions, the survey found that though the Latin American

PR market is still underdeveloped when compared to the US, the PR

industry is growing very fast - especially so in Argentina. But the

working relationship between journalists and PR pros still leaves a lot

to be desired.



Latin American journalists, like their US counterparts, criticized PR

pros for a lack of media knowledge, poorly written materials and an

excessive number of faxes, e-mails and pitch calls. The Argentines,

however, showed greater tolerance for PR pros contacting them in the

newsroom: just 27% (60% in the rest of Latin America and 49% in the US)

said they felt overwhelmed by the number of faxes and e-mails. Only 21%

complained about the number of unsolicited phone calls.



BIGGEST PROBLEMS DEALING WITH PR PROS

                                   US   Argentina   Latin America

Don’t know product or service      42          30              48

Spokespersons not available        41          30              53

Unfamiliar with our editorial      52          37              62

requirements

 Too many faxes and e-mails        49          27              60

Too many unsolicited pitch calls   48          21              33

Poor writing and research skills   32          19              59

Source: PRWeek/Business Wire and Management Press


Would you consider working in PR?

Argentina       37%

US              59%

Latin America   61%

Source: PRWeek/Business Wire and Management Press



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