EDITORIAL: Make an industry standard official

The lure of the North American market is proving strong this summer - with first Lord Chadlington and now PR Week announcing its intention to cross the pond. The decision to export PR Week’s format of news, opinions and hard hitting campaigning, is a direct result of the relentless globalisation of the PR industry, and the pivotal place of the US in this international marketplace.

The lure of the North American market is proving strong this summer

- with first Lord Chadlington and now PR Week announcing its intention

to cross the pond. The decision to export PR Week’s format of news,

opinions and hard hitting campaigning, is a direct result of the

relentless globalisation of the PR industry, and the pivotal place of

the US in this international marketplace.



The US edition will be produced separately but both magazines will

benefit from their transatlantic links - a relationship that will be

strengthened by a new PR Week web site. To borrow a phrase from the

industry, PR Week will ’think global, but act local’, to provide an

international perspective while continuing to address the particular

issues affecting each market.



And there are tremendous lessons that can be learned on both sides.

Undoubtedly the US is streets ahead of Europe in terms of its use of

technology as a communication and agency management tool. But at the

same time a trend towards transatlantic business alliances and a boom in

public affairs work means that an understanding of UK, EC as well as US

lobbying techniques is going to become of prerequisite for truly

international players. The dynamic UK market has much to contribute,

particularly in terms of increasing the accountability of the discipline

- an area in which it has made giant strides.



In my last leader, it was suggested that the UK scene might be rather

overburdened with committees dedicated to the cause of evaluation.

However, this week I have come to the conclusion this island may be

sinking under the weight of such worthy bodies.



Great minds think alike and it appears that the PRCA has independently

hatched a similar scheme for ’best practice’ guidelines to that

announced by the IPR. At the same time, the PRCA and IPR are also

sitting on a forum together with the Chartered Institute of Marketing

(and possibly the Market Research Society ) which is looking to set up a

joint body to administer a quality trade mark for R&E methodologies.



These are all important developments. But there is a danger of

duplication of effort in such a fragmentary approach. So, as part of the

Proof Campaign, PR Week invites all members of the new forum, plus

representatives from ICO and the Association of Media Evaluation

Companies (AMEC) to pool resources.



PR Week offers to host a single forum dedicated to establishing a

quality mark, a joint body to administer it, and one comprehensive good

practice ’ tool kit’. It’s time to sweep away the committee culture, set

a timetable and ensure that the UK continues to push forward the

frontiers of accountable communications.



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