Worldcom survey reports clients up for midsized firms

NEW YORK: Midsized PR agencies are seeing more new business possibilities, according to a recent survey by Worldcom, the international group of independent PR firms.

NEW YORK: Midsized PR agencies are seeing more new business possibilities, according to a recent survey by Worldcom, the international group of independent PR firms.

The group's first PR Barometer found that more than 80% of the senior executives polled reported an increase of at least 10% in new business leads between the fourth quarters of 2002 and 2003. Eight percent reported no change, and 10% reported a decrease by an average of 29%.

A quarter of the 29 executives who responded to the e-mail survey reported an expected increase in 2004 billings by an average of 12%. Sixty percent reported no fluctuation, while 15% expected a decrease.

"I was pleasantly surprised that we're seeing an uptick in business, especially with a all the doom and gloom of recent years," said Bill Collins, a principal at Travers Collins & Co. and chairman of the Americas region for Worldcom.

The survey was undertaken as the PR industry prepares for an economic recovery that's come slower than many had hoped. The respondents are Worldcom partners, representing more than 10 states and 10 countries.

Collins said the findings represent more anecdotal evidence that the industry is heading into an upturn. He said response to Worldcom's dues notices, which go out in December, also have been encouraging.

"Knock on wood, we've seen very little attrition this year," he said.

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