Technology ‘fastest-growing’ market

Technology has overtaken healthcare as the fastest growing market sector for the global PR industry, while crisis management promises the most growth.

That is the verdict of the latest International Communications Consultancy Organisation (ICCO) survey of 20 national PR trade associations. Covering Q2 and Q3, it found IT/technology and telecoms were the best growth prospects for the first time in three years.

Healthcare dropped to third, below the public sector, which benefited from increased optimism from Eastern European PR trade bodies following the expansion of the EU.

‘Overall, the global PR industry appears to be much more optimistic than it was earlier in the year,’ said ICCO secretary-general Simon Quarendon.

The report found crisis management was the discipline promising most growth, ahead of marketing and corporate comms, CSR and media relations.

The majority of the 20 PR associations found employment prospects were either rising (eight) or stable (six).

PR growth is most inhibited by pressures on price, caused by low economic growth or a lack of understanding of the value of PR, according to the survey. Long decision cycles and the involvement of procurement departments were also factors.

l The 2005 ICCO Summit, to be held in Prague on 20-21 October, will examine if the globalisation of PR is either possible or desirable, and the issues thrown up when PR crosses borders.

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