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Anyone have experience shifting from brand strategy at a creative agency to a PR shop? Would you do it again? Pros and cons? (note: options on the table include Edelman and Zeno Group)

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Not all PR agencies are created equal, and Edelman is the first PR/comms agency I’ve worked at, so this answer is specific to my own experience (I spent a decade at large, holding-company creative and digital agencies.) Yes I would absolutely do it again. The biggest shift is that comms and PR tends to have a slightly higher metabolism than advertising. Shorter lead times, smaller scopes, faster turnarounds. Comms clients are used to dealing with media and responding to events in real time, and the depend on their agencies to work with them at the same pace. As a strategist, you really have to lean into your comfort with ambiguity and working without having all the answers. If you are precious about process and doing things “the right way” it might not be a great fit (and I personally wonder about the implications of that for training junior strategists). Another adjustment is that Edelman is much further along compared to a few years ago, but there are lots of traditional PR pros who don’t have experience working with strategy and creative, so you will have to do more teaching and explaining of the process. The upside is that you can quickly add a lot of value by doing basic strategy tasks well. Overall I love it and would not leave Edelman for any equivalent gig at another agency. I could go on but feel free to message me if you want to chat in more detail.

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Strategy is undervalued and often pointless because PR has a limited set of tactics it uses to solve client briefs.

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I switched from a brand consultancy to an experiential agency, although not the size and stature of Edelman but I've heard strategy in PR shops is similar... You don't have much time for it, and all the account people often act as strategists and creatives. It can get very messy... On the other hand, this can also be fun.

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Not personally experienced but I have heard that strategy at PR agencies is different and it can be hard to switch back into a creative shop. I’ve seen this topic pop up in different bowls every now and then

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