The first thing to say about 2008 at the U.S. public relations operation of French giant Publicis Consultants is that it was a year of relative stability for a firm that has undergone a series of abrupt management transitions over the past 12 months. Wendy Lund, who was appointed U.S. chief executive in 2007 after the departure of incumbent Ann Moravick, has continued to build on the firm’s positioning as a specialist in “living brands”—primarily those in the health and home and food and nutrition sectors—while Steve Bryant and Hannah Coan, both long-term senior staffers who were promoted last year, continue to lead brand and business development and the firm’s Seattle office respectively.
The second thing to say is that while revenues were flat, there was considerable progress against the firm’s new strategy and positioning. So the year saw about $2.4 million in new business wins, from both existing and new clients, all in the living brands space. The New York office, home to about half of PCPR’s 60 people, grew by about 17 percent, despite the overall softness of the healthcare sector, with three new assignments from sanofi-aventis (for its Multaq, Eloxatin and Benzaclin brands), and the addition of Zoll and MeadJohnson to the client list. In Seattle, there was new business from Purina Mighty Dog, Wonka, Praeventia, Bioseutica, Sodastream, munchbyn and Lenny’s Real Beef as the office continued to build on its reputation as one of the best in the food and nutrition category.
PCPR uses a methodology it calls “Amazing Relevance,” which is designed to deliver big ideas—often holistic, integrated brand platform ideas—drawing on six dynamics: originality, involvement, discovery, authenticity, value and timeliness. It’s an approach designed to help clients achieve coverage beyond their vertical media in leading business and consumer publications, on television, and increasingly in the digital realm, and to help clients engage both consumers and influencers and bring their brands to life. It’s all supported with some resources that remain unique to Publicis, most notably the culinary and nutrition center in the
The firm also expanded its digital and social media capabilities, now fully integrated into most client campaigns. The PCPR creative team worked on a wide range of tools, from electronic invitations for media and influences to e-newsletters to online media relations to content development for websites such as AcneHeroes.com and Soyconnection.com.
Highlights of 2008 in
PCPR’s alignment with Manning Selvage & Lee provides it with access to substantial resources within the