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O'Dwyer's Newsletter - Mar. 12, 2012 - Vol. 45 - No. 11 (download PDF version)

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The Garden State has planted the seeds to review its tourism advertising and PR business with an RFP process through late April.

New Jersey

New Jersey’s Dept. of State released an RFP March 6 saying it will either award individual contracts for PR and advertising or a single pact covering both following the review.

The work focuses on three tenets: reinforcing and enhancing the state’s vacation destination reputation, expanding its existing tourism markets, and bringing in digital marketing strategies. Budget is $5M a year split as $300K for PR and $4.7M for ads.

Brushfire, with offices in Cedar Knolls, N.J., and New York City, is the incumbent from the last review in 2007, winning both pieces of the account.

Tourism is the state’s No. 3 industry as visitors generated a $35B impact in 2010. But that figure was below recent highs in the mid-2000s. RFP:


George Drucker, who served as chief marketing officer for the past 11 years at RF|Binder Partners, is joining New York-based Crenshaw Communications on March 15 as West Coast president in its new Los Angeles outpost.

The move reunites Drucker with Dorothy Crenshaw as the pair worked together at Edelman. He was at Edelman for more than 20 years in New York and Los Angeles. Earlier, he was partner in the PR unit of Jordan, McGrath, Case and Taylor Advertising, which was merged into Euro Havas RSCG.

RF|Binder is part of Ruder Finn Group.


Chime Communications, parent of Bell Pottinger, reported a seven percent drop in PR income in 2011 to the $105M mark due to the restructuring of its contract with the State Dept. for communications duties in Iraq and Afghanistan.

PR, which generates 42 percent of Chime's operating income, was bolstered by gains in financial, corporate, consumer, healthcare and Middle East hotspots embroiled with Arab Spring issues.

CEO Lord Bell is negotiating to buy a piece of PR unit.


Edelman topped the 2011 healthcare rankings with $114,588,421 in revenues, up slightly from $113M in 2010, while WCG moved into second place to $43,350,100 as it registered a 21.4% gain.

Others in the top five were Ruder Finn at $30,401,000; APCO Worldwide at Healthcare $22,741,000, and Cooney/Waters Rankings Issue Group at $20,433,000.

PR firm CEOs and heads of the healthcare practices, asked to describe how they are practicing PR and communications, responded with detailed descriptions of their activities.

Revealed is a world of dizzying complexity as PR firms and their clients grapple with issues surrounding pharmaceuticals, patient care, health technology, legislation and regulation at federal, state and local levels, medical devices, health insurance, general and healthcare press, and the academic and scientific communities.

Leading gainers among the top 25 firms in the healthcare category included MWW Group, up 323% to $2.5M; Jones Public Affairs, up 149% to $4,272,403; Rasky Baerlein up 64.4% to $3,058,884; Coyne PR, +26.6% to $3,375,000; Dodge Communications +25.3% to $3,602,980; Revive PR +22.7% to $4,600,000; Hager Sharp +22.1% to $4,796,177; Crosby Marketing +20.9% to $4,440,982, and Makovsky & Co. +13.6% to $5,000,000.

Nine of the firms in the top 25 healthcare ranking only handle healthcare—Cooney/Waters, GYMR, Spectrum, Revive PR, Jones PA, Jarrard Phillips Cate & Hancock, MCS, Dodge Communications and LaVoie Group. Cooney/Waters grew 45% to $20.4M and fifth place in the rankings from No. 13 partly by adding The Corkery Group, which had $6.3M in fees in the first nine months of 2011.

WCG’s revenues are 92% in healthcare. Other specialties handled are technology, food/beverages and entertainment/cultural. It is now part of the W20 Group holding company. Edelman, $114,588,421

Kym White, global health chair of Edelman, said the firm believes that, “Health, today, is everyone’s business.” Said White: “Companies, institutions, and individuals are shifting their perception of health—from something needing to be fixed to something that needs to be

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