Is IPG's social media move bad news for its PR agencies?

Today, an article in the Wall Street Journal revealed IPG's plans to launch a social media division, called Rally, later this week.

Today, an article in the Wall Street Journal revealed IPG's plans to launch a social media division, called Rally, later this week. The division will be part of Universal McCann and led by Heidi Browning, UM's global digital officer and former MySpace executive. It's an interesting move, especially considering that it is being called a "social media" practice, not a digital practice, which is more typical of advertising firms.

According to the Journal, the division will "The division will help marketers develop campaigns, track online chatter about their brands and measure how those campaigns perform." Hmm, sounds a lot like what PR firms do, no? Certainly, much has been written and said about how PR needs to take control of social media and claim it as something that they can do best, but certainly that has to be hard when there's increasing competition from within your old holding company. So, what do you think? Does IPG's move send a message about what it thinks about the social media prowess of its PR agencies?

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