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PR 'must be more creative'

08/07/2013

Although communications recruitment and PR jobs are still in a relatively healthy condition, especially compared to many other industries, there is a concern that the quality of roles available to people in the industry could be declining.

Specifically, a new report from PR Week and Marlin PR has suggested that there is a dearth of creative positions coming up within in the industry, meaning businesses could be missing a trick when it comes to their campaigns or solutions.

The study cites judges' criticism of the PR entries to last year's Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity, when the officials suggested that the sector lacked the nous to create the new 'big idea' that will generate a shift in industry thinking.

Sparking a great deal of soul-searching within the PR industry, this attack appears to have encouraged businesses to make changes - some 49 per cent of survey respondents argued that creativity is more central to their plans this year than it was in 2012.

With the industry now competing with holistic advertising agencies for business, it is clear firms need to take steps to stand out from the crowd.

Audience engagement and 'the big idea' were ranked as joint top priorities for the sector, highlighting the importance of innovative thinking in driving improvements in brand management.

Jenny Tod, managing director at Marlin PR, argued that smaller budgets need not stifle creativity.

"The most forward thinking agencies haven't siloed creativity and have encouraged the entire agency to embrace it. Everyone in this agency is expected to be a creative of some sort - be they writers, video experts, or social media specialists," she explained.

With only 67.7 per cent of companies boasting a unique creativity function, it seems that Ms Tod's approach could be the way forward for PR firms hoping to generate more innovative content in order to perform their role well.

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