In 2019, PR Lions entries dropped 12 per cent to 1,857, which is the lowest number since 2014, when there were 1,850.
This is a much greater decline in entries than the overall figure, which fell by four per cent – to 30,953.
Last year, entries across all categories crashed by 21 per cent after Publicis Groupe imposed a moratorium on its agencies entering global awards events.
This didn’t impact PR too much – which fell four per cent last year – because Publicis doesn’t have many comms agencies outside of MSLGroup.
The PR Lions category received the seventh most entries, while the highest entry numbers were in Film Lions (2,793) (see chart below).
The drop in PR Lions can be explained by several factors. In recent years, the festival has added new categories for work that previously might have fallen into the PR category, such as social and influencer, and brand experience and activation.
The PR industry is increasingly doing more creative work that may better suit other categories, while there has also been a growing number of regional PR awards events and a budgetary squeeze on agencies looking to enter awards.
The country with the largest number of entries is the US, with 8,138, followed by the UK (2,268) and Brazil (2,093).
PRWeek will cover all of the PR agency winners and shortlists over the week.