During June and July, I did my first internship in a public relations company based in London, called Bell Pottinger. I didn't know exactly what the challenges were in this field, so it was a chance to learn many new things. Chime Communications PLC is the holding company of 35 companies which include the UK's leading public relations group, Bell Pottinger; the UK's leading research and consultation group, Opinion Leader Group; and one of the fastest growing advertising and marketing services groups in the UK, VCCP. The Bell Pottinger Group, managed by Kevin Murray, is a network of 23 companies which collaborate together 'to make their clients better known, better regarded and more successful'. The aims of this internship were, to improve my english, to increase my understanding of the functioning of a public relations firm, and to put into practice the knowledge acquired during the academic year, particularly in marketing. In addition, it would enable me to experience a particular professional project, and find out if this was the field in which I would eventually like to specialize. In order to do this, I arranged to do my internship in London in one of the companies of the Bell Pottinger Group called The Collective. This is the department which has to bring new businesses into the group and then, once acquired, to assign them to the most relevant agencies. Another function of the team is to specialize in crisis management.
[...] o Business Climate of Saudi Arabia During my internship in Bell Pottinger, my manager told me to always refer to the investment authority when I had to do research concerning the business background of a foreign country. It is a good way for public relations agencies to determine what the advantages for doing business there are and what obstacles they may face. And with these elements, they will be able to prepare the best public relations campaign which will be in total suitability with the realities of the country. [...]
[...] It is also the biggest financial market in the Middle-East serving a population of more than twenty seven million with high incomes and purchasing power. And currently, the country is trying to sign bilateral agreement with many countries in order to strengthen its power and to encourage investments. Then Saudi Arabia is really attractive for international investments. It is now a stable country which offers many possibilities and advantages. But there are still obstacles and negative aspects which must be considered by public relations companies. [...]
[...] This is why it is important to wonder what the key success factors of a public relations agency are and if they vary from one country to another. To answer this question, I have decided to analyse two very different countries. The first one is the United Kingdom since it represents a rich country with a traditional and typical economy in the western world. And in contrast, I have chosen an emerging country which functions in a totally different way: Saudi Arabia. [...]
[...] I had to present the firm with information about the products and services it delivers. I also had to find the composition of the board of directors and biographies of each of them because it was important to have their previous career details and to know their specializations. I had to refer to press releases to see how the company was perceived in terms of its performance, its strengths and its weaknesses. I also wrote a report concerning the Strategic Health Authority. [...]
[...] Roughly, the way of resolving a public relations problem is the same for all European countries. But in the case of the United Kingdom, the situation may slightly be different. Indeed a company which tries to find the best PR agency in the United Kingdom will have a wide choice and many options. According to the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR), the PR sector in the United Kingdom is the most highly developed in Europe and it ranks second in the world just beyond the United-States. [...]
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