By Greg Hazley
Financial communications vet Phil Nourie has opened a new shop, NouriePR+, centered on B2B marketing communications and strategic counseling as he looks to widen the scope of PR counsel beyond traditional media relations and “upend” the PR agency model.
Nourie said he’s serving middle market and well-funded start-up stage clients that PR firms have traditionally ignored or under-served as they rely too much on junior staffers providing uneven media relations services that are drying up.
“Clients just aren’t getting value that way,” he said. “PR firms in those markets never really got into marketing and business development advising,” he said, adding: “I’m not trying to compete with PR firms but I think there’s value in a strategic counseling role coming from a media relations background.”
Nourie starts up with clients like registered investment adviser Warren Financial Service, REIT Kairos Real Estate Partners and the Arthur Ashe Learning Center, among others, providing services from business development counseling and content creation to digital services and advertising.
Nourie, who merged his six-year-old firm into the Financial Relations Board in 2007 and another start-up, Nourie Johnson, into Stanton PR & Marketing in 2011, said he believes many media relations-centric firms are losing from 20 to 30 percent of that business a year, adding new work to replace shrinking budgets rather than address underlying issues.
The PR exec said he sees an agency model he dubs the “agency’s agency,” similar to what some tech and pharma sales companies have pursued to boost revenue without the expense of full-time employees and the associated costs. He is working with PR firm and M&A adviser Art Stevens on that effort.
He added: “Attaining the kind of profitable clients agencies want today is no longer about knowing the right people; it’s far more complex than that”
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