The week in communications

Check out the highlights from a busy and interesting week in PR and communications.

Martin Sorrell fulfilled a promise to Jack Dorsey this week when he tweeted for the first time.
Martin Sorrell fulfilled a promise to Jack Dorsey this week when he tweeted for the first time.

WPP CEO Martin Sorrell finally posted his first tweet, having initially joined Twitter in 2009. He was fulfilling a promise to Twitter cofounder and CEO Jack Dorsey he made in Cologne at German tech trade show Dmexco one year ago. The two reconvened on stage earlier this week at the 2017 event. WPP spends $300 million a year with Twitter, which is dwarfed by the $5.5 billion it outlays annually with Google and the $2.3 billion it transacts with Facebook. At the time of writing he has 4,006 followers and has tweeted twice.

Separately, the WPP boss is also facing storm clouds as concerns grow about the future of the holding company agency services sector, under pressure from client budget cuts and increased competition from digital giants such as Facebook, Google, and Amazon and management consultancies including Deloitte and Accenture. Analysts, observers, and insiders speculate that Sorrell needs to merge and simplify the number of individual agency brands in the holding company.

Hope Hicks got the White House director of communications gig full time having covered the role on a temporary basis since the short-lived tenure of The Mooch. Hicks and press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders have restored an air of normalcy to the White House communications function following the crazy tenure of Sean Spicer, when the PR person became the story. Spicer made his first of what will no doubt be many appearances on TV since relinquishing the press sec role, guesting on the Jimmy Kimmel late-night show on Wednesday. Spicer was a little nervous and revealed the info nobody wanted to think about that he had never seen the president naked…

There have been some comments about the relative youthfulness of Hicks for such an important role, but podcast guest Bill Chandler from Western Union recalled his time as press secretary for Los Angeles mayor Tom Bradley when he was still in his mid-twenties and backed Hicks’ credentials for the job. She certainly seems to have the ear of the president and has managed to avoid most of the White House intrigue and in-fighting that has dogged other officials.

Al Roker presented PRWeek and the PR Council’s Diversity Distinction in PR Awards in New York City Thursday night. The amiable host handed over gongs to honorees including agency diversity champion APCO Worldwide’s Washington MD Lisa Osbourne Ross and agency team of the year ($100 million-plus) Burson-Marsteller. HP CMO Antonio Lucio accepted his award via a video.

Some sad news this week as we said goodbye to civil rights champion and former PRWeek Communicator of the Year Edie Windsor and longtime Ketchum executive Marv Gellman. Our thoughts are with both of their families.

PRWeek announced its 2017 Hall of Fame honorees and we are very much looking forward to celebrating Howard Rubenstein, Muriel Fox, Kim Hunter, Pam Edstrom, Zenia Mucha, and Bill Heyman at our gala event in New York City on the evening of December 4.

Time is running out to enter the PRWeek Awards. October 2 is the first deadline for submissions. You can find more details here, including top tips on putting together a great entry.

PRWeek’s Swipe Right conference takes place in New York City on October 12. The fantastic lineup of speakers includes Facebook CMO Gary Briggs, IBM CMO Michelle Peluso, The Girl With No Job, CEOs of Minibar and Boxed.

Full disclosure – this is a sponsored content alert: do check out our new Earned Media Rising website, which we produced in partnership with Cision. It contains analysis, podcasts, videos, surveys, and other topical content about the current trends and issues shaping the future of PR. We’ll be adding to the site for the next six months. Check it out; it’s rather good.

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