MSLGROUP Launches Report on Understanding the Public Relations Industry

Mumbai: MSLGROUP India’s Hanmer MSL and 20:20 MSL, both part of MSLGROUP, Publicis Groupe’s flagship Public Relations, speciality communications and engagement group and the largest Public Relations and social media network in India, today launched their most recent executive report on the Public Relations industry in India, Understanding the Public Relations Industry in India: Challenges, Opportunities and 2012 Outlook. The paper takes an in-depth view of the PR industry in India, drawing on quantitative and qualitative research to bring together a hard-hitting and frank appraisal.

The PR industry in India today is facing potential growth-limiting challenges such as a dearth of home-grown talent, a fall out from recent PR scandals and a move away from traditional PR towards strategic communications. The report touches on these issues, as well as the widely reported misconceptions about size of the Indian PR industry, and the ramifications of this over-inflated figure on the market. A recent Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India study pegged the size of the industry at a wildly inflated $6 billion whilst MSLGROUP’s research points to $140 million being a more true representation.

Jaideep Shergill, CEO for Hanmer MSL and Member of MSLGROUP India Management Board commented, “The challenges before the Indian PR industry are not that different to what other service industries have had to face in the past – a serious talent shortage, disconnections between fees and value and measuring performance accurately. Furthermore, we must look ahead and ask ourselves how the industry should react to a worsening global economic situation. These are questions this report tackles and by bringing these tough issues to the fore, we hope that it puts the industry into perspective and kicks off a discussion on the roadmap that PR in India so desperately requires.”

“The industry is at an important crossroads, and we have taken the first step in not only asking difficult questions of ourselves and the industry, but also providing potential solutions to foster a stronger and sustainable India PR market.” added Sunil Agarwal, founder of 20:20 MSL and Member of MSLGROUP India Management Board.

In addition to highlighting a variety of trouble spots, Understanding the Public Relations Industry in India: Challenges, Opportunities and 2012 Outlook report also identifies opportunities for PR agencies such as offering integrated strategic and speciality communications, bridging the compensation gap, ensuring performance measurement and understanding client expectations.

Throughout the report, critical questions are posed to agencies and their staff, clients and their organizations, media and the industry at large which are aimed to spark debate, ideas and potential solutions that can strengthen the industry’s future.

A misunderstanding of the size of India’s PR industry, hiding the on the ground realities and core issues. A serious Indian talent crunch, stunted by a more lucrative in-house corporate communications sector, increasing the demand-supply. A lack of understanding of how PR can play a strategic role, resulting in low PR retainers – in the Rs 20-lakh ($40,000) range compared to the average advertising retainer of Rs 2 crore ($400,000).A vital need for PR firms to offer integrated communications as the line between PR, advertising and digital begins to blur.Speciality communications such as niche PR, engagement through social media and employer branding to be recognized as growth focus areas for PR agencies.

Despite the global economic turmoil, India continues to grown at 7%, presenting a unique opportunity for PR firms in terms of global and Indian MNCs.

MSLGROUP India, one of the largest PR and strategic communications brands in India, has developed this report to further its and the industry’s goals for sustainable and professional development. PR professionals, clients, organisations and the industry recognise that PR in India is at a critical juncture and Public Relations Industry in India: Challenges, Opportunities and 2012 Outlook offers a transparent and robust précis to move the industry forward.

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