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2011 ICCO Summit Unites PR Consultancy Directors from 30 Countries
John Saunders and Paul Holmes Inducted into ICCO Hall of Fame
06 October 2011 SINTRA, PORTUGAL - On the 29th and 30th of September, some 120 PR consultancy directors from 30 countries convened at the 2011 ICCO Summit for “PR Takes the Lead: The Industry in 2020”. The one-of-a-kind programme delivered lively debate among top PR consultants and included both the Global SABRE Awards ceremony and inductions into the ICCO Hall of Fame.
Leading public relations figures Lord Chadlington (Huntsworth), Rob Flaherty (Ketchum), John Saunders (Fleishman-Hillard), Prema Sagar (Genesis Burson-Marsteller) and Brad Staples (APCO Worldwide) led sessions on Day 1 of the Summit, sharing their views on the future direction of the business and opportunities for PR. Collectively they highlighted a shift in growth and services toward Asia and the need to “do good” by supporting clients in sustainable and responsible business practices. They also brought to light the disruptions to the public relations industry through economic and social change and the need to lead communications at a strategic level by being more creative in our work.
Day 2 saw practical breakout sessions by experts on the use of social media, measurement of PR campaigns, management of key financial elements and competing for talent. The programme also incorporated a panel session with leading independent agency heads Jean-Leopold Schuybroek (Interel), Andreas Fischer-Appelt (fischerAppelt), Carl Fredrik Sammeli (Prime) and Maxim Behar (M3 Communications), who discussed the major issues facing the future success of independent businesses.
Stephen Waddington of Speed explained the emergence of social media and how the “shift to participation” creates new service territory for PR to claim, while Robert Phillips of Edelman drove home the need for transparency in building trust and maintaining the reputation of not just brands and companies but also individuals and governments.
Paul Holmes of The Holmes Group challenged consultants to stand up for PR and be confident in the value they deliver since the business of “relations with the public” encompasses far more than mere communications. Olivier Fleurot (MSLGROUP) later closed the conference by drawing attention to the major changes the world has experienced in the last five years and what the impact has been on public relations in particular. He argued that, in order to succeed, consultancies need to 1) adopt new business models that embrace the new communications environment and 2) implement a global campaign to improve the perception of PR.
Current ICCO President Richard Houghton and Past President Lou Capozzi moderated the two days of high-level debate and acknowledged the role of ICCO as a convener of industry leadership.
Celebrating the best
The evening of the 29th saw the first-ever Global SABRE Awards dinner followed by inductions into the ICCO Hall of Fame.
Edelman took home top honours, receiving both Global Agency of the Year and the Platinum SABRE Award for Best Public Relations Campaign last year. This latter award was shared with Weber Shandwick and the client team at Pepsi for the Pepsi Refresh project.
Outstanding Consultancy awards went to Prime of Sweden (Consumer), Brunswick (Corporate and Financial), Glover Park Group of the US (Public Affairs), WCG (Healthcare), Bite Communications (Technology) and Ogilvy Digital Influence (Digital).
The ICCO Hall of Fame welcomed two new members: John Saunders and Paul Holmes.
John currently serves as Regional President of EMEA for Fleishman-Hillard and has held leadership positions in the firm for more than 20 years. As a past president of ICCO and an active member of several other trade associations for the communications industry, he has a long track record of contributing to the development of public relations and professional standards on an international scale.
Paul is the only non-consultant ever to join the Hall of Fame. Perhaps best known for his Global Agency Rankings and SABRE awards, Paul is a seasoned journalist who has dedicated his career to raising the profile of public relations as a global discipline. He consistently challenges PR professionals to outperform competing disciplines and generates much-needed dialogue on industry issues.
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