Average base salaries for 2003 dropped 6.1 per cent to $63,590 (£33,600).
Mid-level practitioners with eight to 12 years’ experience were the only people to see salary gains. Entry-level salaries dropped faster than those at senior levels – professionals with less than two years’ experience saw their salaries fall around 6.5 per cent to $33,506 (£17,695).
However, almost three-quarters of respondents (72 per cent) said they were at least adequately rewarded, while the rest felt underpaid. The survey polled 2,546 PR practitioners at all levels. Pay in the industry for men was on average $22,000 (£11,618) higher than for women.
Freelances saw the largest gain in average base income, which grew 12 per cent to $70,954 (£37,485), as they took on increased project work from agencies and small firms. However, 98 per cent were looking for jobs.