Nearly a third of PR agencies calculate their billing rates by relying on what the market will bear, according to an exclusive study conducted by StevensGouldPincus on behalf of PR News.
When it comes to PR billing there’s little daylight between the most popular billing method among PR pros— amounts based on benchmarking reports—and calculating billing rates based on what the market will bear.
Those methods were followed by total salary, plus benefits divided by projected “billable” hours, and total salary, plus benefits divided by 2080 hours (52 weeks X 40 hours).
Rick Gould, managing partner at StevensGouldPincus, said he thought it was “incredibe” that nearly a third of the survey respondents calculate billing rates based on what the market will bear.
“A method is needed to validate the hourly rates,” he said. “This validation will prvide the basis to request client fee increases and spike the bottom line of your agency.”
The online survey, which was conducted in November, garnered responses from 84 senior PR executives. Most of the respondents work for companies with less than $3 million in revenue or between $3 million and $10 million in revenue.
With budgeting season now in high gear, a majority of respondents (65%) said they mark-up rebillables while 36% of the respondents said they do not. “Marking-up rebillables, to recover the administrative costs of tracking out-of-pockets, is still popular,” Gould said. PRN
Rick Gould is managing partner of StevensGouldPinucs. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.