PRAD 255 - Module 3 - PR Departments and Firms - Part 1final


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Public Relations Departments and Firms (Part 1) Principles of Public Relations Ragas

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Importance of organizational structure in PR function Larger firms have a greater tendency than smaller firms to give the PR department a “seat at the table” with senior management (“dominant coalition”) = a bigger voice An important indicator of a PR department’s influence and power is whether its top communicator is a member of the dominant coalition 77% of Fortune 500 report that the top comms. officer reports to the “C-suite”

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So what are PR departments called inside of companies? Most frequently called “corporate communications” or simply “communications” department Due to view that these names are broader in scope than PR; also some negative perception of “PR” A check of the Fortune 500 reveals only 48 have PR departments, 200 have (corp.) communication departments

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What is the size of a PR department inside a company? PR department size depends greatly on the size of the organization: PR dept. in a Fortune 500 company: average of 24 professionals with a budget of $8.5 million per year PRSA survey found only 13% of respondents work in PR department with more than 10 professionals Same survey found almost 33% of respondents were the only PR professional in the organization

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Sources of friction for the PR department inside a company Legal department Human Resources (HR)department Advertising department Marketing department Why might the PR department run into friction from each of these departments?

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PR firms – what do they do? PR firms a.k.a. public relations agencies Organizations increasingly outsource specialized PR work to PR firms Provide a variety of services Traditional practice areas (e.g. Media Relations, Community Relations, Financial Relations, Public Affairs, Reputation, Crisis, Events, etc.) PR firms offer specialized services and expertise that organizations are not likely to have “in house”

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Examples of specialty practice areas: Fleishman-Hillard

Summary: PRAD 255 - Module 3 - PR Departments and Firms - Part 1 (Matt Ragas)

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