The genesis of the public relations industry in India can be traced back to early 1990s when the Indian government opened up the economy that saw the entry of multinationals and some of the world’s best known brands into the country. This also saw the advent of public relations companies offering strategic advice and a bouquet of services to public relations promote brands. Brands competed and so did public relations companies. Good competition public relations provided a healthier environment for all to grow. The public relations industry in India grew manifold in these years to what it is – a multi-million dollar industry today.
The dynamics of the public relations profession has changed. It is today seen as a management communications discipline, a gradual shift from being considered as the forte of mass communication public relations professionals in the past. Public relations business has existed in the country for several decades, but it has been the forte of Man Fridays and file pushers. It has, in the past decade, evolved into the communications consulting industry giving strategic and integrated communications solutions to businesses in India. The industry has not just grown horizontally. There has been vertical growth as well. In India, there are firms specialising in public relations providing communication packages only for specific sectors. For instance, there are PUBLIC RELATIONS companies provide their services to the Information Technology sector, Healthcare, Biotechnology and Financial Services sector.
Four I’s –
Information, Insight, Instinct and Influence– are playing a pivotal role in today’s decision-making public relations process. Public relations firms have to have a structured and documented programme for their clients and not purely focused on coverage in the media. The new focus is on creating new recession–public relations proof ways of communicating in ever-changing economies. The public relations industry in India is once again on the fast track, with full firepower on most fronts and the mood is upbeat.