KNOXVILLE, TN: PR firms have mixed feelings about their Web sites, a recent survey of 1,000 independent US and Canadian agencies has revealed.
KNOXVILLE, TN: PR firms have mixed feelings about their Web sites,
a recent survey of 1,000 independent US and Canadian agencies has
But even the biggest technophobes seem pleased with the way e-mail has
revolutionized client and media communications.
Fewer than a third (29%) of respondents said they were ’very satisfied’
with their sites, while 64% reported being ’somewhat satisfied’ and 7%
were ’not at all satisfied.’ Eighty-four percent of respondents added
that e-mail has improved the ’quality’ of client communications, and 71%
said it has improved their communications with the media.
The survey was jointly conducted by Ackerman Public Relations and
Marketing and Al Croft, a Sedona, AZ-based management consultant.
According to Croft, the 1,000-strong response indicates an intense
interest in what PR agencies are doing on the Web.
Among those who reported being generally optimistic about the impact of
e-mail on client communications was Englewood, CO-based pro Pete
’(E-mail) allows us to be even more accurate and precise,’ he
’DSL and computer upgrades have changed the way we do business.’
But Croft believes that one reason many pros are dissatisfied with their
Web sites is the difficulty in locating them. Croft randomly selected 12
agency names, including many of the industry’s biggest. Using Yahoo! and
AltaVista search engines, he was surprised to find that he couldn’t find
six of the 12 online.
’No wonder most agencies said they were only ’somewhat satisfied’ with
the results they’ve been getting from their sites,’ he quipped.
Croft added a caveat, however: ’One of the most interesting and
contradictory things about the survey is the large number of principals
who are positive about the current and future impact of the Internet on
their agencies, but who are not really satisfied with their own Web
Added Ackerman president Cathy Ackerman, ’PR firms seem to be scrambling
to figure (the Internet) out and stay ahead, almost in spite of the
There (is) a fair amount of nervousness relative to ... being able to
outsmart the competition and create a unique selling proposition on the
Web. I’m amazed at how many firms are still not focusing on the value of
having a really good site.’