PR professionals come in all shapes and sizes, with different foibles and outlooks on life, right? Not necessarily.
Exclusive research for PRWeek by profiling firm Experian - which analysed the postcodes of 500 random practitioners - shows PROs to be rather similar. Indeed, it is possible to categorise more than a quarter of them into three types: what Experian calls New Urban Colonists, Global Connectors and Cultural Leaders (see below).
Experian head of press (business strategies) Bruno Rost says if you work in PR, chances are you resemble one of these types - in terms of what you buy, your outlook, and your self-image.
If you still need convincing, PRWeek/Experian has more proof of your predictability: the most common PRO is the New Urban Colonist, which represented 13 per cent of the sample.
Experian says only one per cent of the UK population fits into this category, meaning there is a disproportionate amount of these people working in the PR industry.
So, which type are you? Read on to see if you recognise any traits.
How did we do it?
Experian, a leading geodemographic profiling firm in the UK, uses census return information and additional data from consumer questionnaires to describe each UK postcode as one of 52 ‘types'. Each type displays certain characteristics, and each has up to 12 sub-groups that provide minute differentiation between people.
PRWeek gave Experian 500 random postcodes of anonymous readers and asked it to classify them into different categories. Experian then extrapolated the three major types.
NEW URBAN COLONISTS ‘Toby and Sophie'
Most likely found in Twickenham, Richmond, Wimbledon, Kingston (London), Brighton, Manchester, Cambridge, Southampton.
Recognised for Containing high concentrations of women determined to pursue careers and delay having children.
Described as Avid consumers of information, relying on newspapers (particularly supplements) rather than TV to learn about new products. They are ambitious people who are inclined to be dissatisfied with life as it is, but
are motivated to improve their lives for the future.
Main interest is What they eat - not just at restaurants, but also at home - especially exotic, organic or
Like to buy Holidays abroad.
Enjoy The arts, cinema, music and fine wine.
Define themselves as Demanding much from life, but often have little time to fit in the things they want to do. More likely to make lifestyle statements (such as being vegetarian) than choose status brands.
Attitude Open to new fashions both in taste and thinking. They are alert to issues that affect others as well as themselves, and to international as well as national trends.
Would rather Recycle and have concerns about ethical businesses; and keep fit rather than play in team sports - with tennis and gyms playing more of a social role than a workout one.
Don't say Why haven't you got children?
Do say Fancy a coffee at that new cosmopolitan café?
Dominant age range 25-34
Marital status Single (41%)
Degree ownership: 48%
Value of house £247,000
Two cars or more: 19%
Political bias Labour; 30%; Conservative, 18%; Lib Dem, 13%
Shops at M&S, 35%; Waitrose, 27%
Reads The Sun, 14%; Daily Mail, 21%; Guardian, 11%; Times, 13%; FT, 4%
GLOBAL CONNECTORS ‘Sebastian and Olivia'
Most likely found in Chelsea, Battersea, Kensington, Hampton, St John's Wood (London), Bath, Edinburgh, Gloucester, Oxford.
Recognised for Being middle-aged and single, living the hedonistic lifestyle of the wealthy, with few financial commitments beyond their own interests. They demand to be treated as individuals, with above-average smoking and drinking.
Described as Prosperous, self-confident, well informed and ‘cultured' in the broadest sense. Driven by the need to achieve. They welcome change and have no fear of risk. Extensive prosperity cushions them from domestic routine and chores such as cooking and cleaning.
Main interests are Interior decoration and refurbishment, eating out and foreign travel.
Like to buy Anything artistic. Clothes are tailored rather than off-the-peg.
Enjoy Designer clothes shops, antiques, and taxis rather than public transport.
Define themselves as People whose fingernails never get dirty and whose closets only contain worn-out garments for the occasional home-improvement project. Defined by career/life choices they make rather than affiliations to family, community or religion.
Attitude Individualism centred around a refined portfolio of interests. Vanity is subtle and they rarely parade their economic and social status. They are ‘inner-directed' and do not seek approval.
Would rather Colonise newly fashionable areas such as London's Notting Hill.
Don't say Have you cleaned the bathroom?
Do say What was the last thing you bought at Harrods?
Dominant age range 25-34
Marital status Single (51%)
Degree ownership: 59%
Value of house £468,000
Two cars or more: 11%
Political bias Labour, 37%; Conservative, 4%; Lib Dem, 20%
Shops at M&S, 44%; Waitrose, 42%
Reads The Sun, 3%; Daily Mail, 21%; Guardian, 13%; Times, 23%; FT, 9%
CULTURAL LEADERS ‘Jacob and Annabel'
Most likely found in Golders Green, Finchley, Church End, Muswell Hill (London), Leeds, Bristol, Aberdeen, Coventry.
Recognised for Being arts or social science degree holders whose job it is to exercise judgement in areas to do with policy, taste and the arts. Typically well-to-do professionals living in traditional family units, for whom home life is a priority. They spend their wealth carefully.
Described as Fastidious, alert, well informed and principled, with a marked quest for authenticity. Little preference for TV, but when they do it is news, drama and documentaries. Contentious people who act, as well as voice, their beliefs. Spending is determined by aesthetics, but they do not parade their wealth. Little interest in the brasher side of consumerism.
Main interests are Gourmet food, reading, classical music and theatre.
Like to buy Goods and services perceived as having a classic, understated value.
Enjoy Rich colours and ethnic designs, but are not ostentatious.
Define themselves as Ready to support environmental or social concerns; likely to be immediate followers of cultural trends, rather than initiators. Are reserved. Prefer public transport to taxis and display readiness to support worthy causes.
Attitude Not big-spenders, and many would reject consumer culture. Tend to pay attention to diet and take regular exercise.
Would rather Take foreign holidays in French or Tuscan hideaways.
Don't say Forget the kids - come out to play.
Do say Would you like to look at my well-appointed kitchen?
Dominant age range 45-54
Marital status Married (52%)
Degree ownership: 49%
Value of house £279,000
Two cars or more: 28%
Political bias Labour, 22%; Conservative, 28%; Lib Dem, 23%
Shops at M&S, 41%; Waitrose, 32%
Reads The Sun, 6%; Daily Mail, 20%; Guardian, 11%; Times, 19%; FT, 6%