Public relations in Brazil is dominated by women

Professionals emphasize feminine characteristics such as compassion
and sensitivity to social interaction as an explanation for the phenomenon

Unlike other sectors of the Brazilian communications market, the PR market or public relations is dominated by female professionals. Large, medium, and small agency teams (the latter more commonly known as “boutique”) are dominated by businesswomen and partners, CEOs, and other management-level executives.

And how will this dominance of women in public relations be explained? “We believe there are some factors, one of which is that the nature of work in public relations has historically been associated with feminine qualities such as communication, empathy and sensitivity to dealing with different audiences and situations,” says Bia Azevedo, partner at Marqueterie. With Teresa Westin and Deborah Carvalho. Teresa emphasizes the feminine gift of leading teams. “Female leadership generally favors a more collaborative management style in a sector where teamwork is fundamental, bringing together disciplines and very diverse fronts. These behavioral skills, balanced with technical skills, are valued and essential to perform well in our market.”

With 17 years in the PR market, Marqueterie can be classified as a mid-sized agency in the industry. Serving several segments such as the financial market,
technology, food, beverages, education, architecture and design, real estate, civil construction and agribusiness among others. Its multidisciplinary team consists of 30 communications professionals from journalism, social media, advertising, graphic design and public relations who work in PR, content, influencer marketing, media and creative.

Teresa, Bia and Deborah from PR agency Marqueterie. A convergence of goals brought together three partners with academic backgrounds in the fields of communication

The three partners of Marqueterie have common professional knowledge in the field of communication. Bia and Teresa are journalists and Deborah is an advertising executive. Deborah explains that the convergence of goals brought them together. “Each of us had individual motivations for getting here, but we came together with the same goal. Use this leadership to manage an agency that truly makes a difference in each of its clients’ businesses while promoting a healthy and prosperous environment for its employees. Our mission and values, established in 2005, are very simple and bring this: to make communication and relationships a valuable and strategic business tool in our clients’ daily lives, based on values ​​such as quality, ethics, competence, transparency and efficiency.”

A feeling
Journalism is also the professional background of Ana Zamboni, CEO of PR agency Tastemaker, which has served more than 390 clients since 2003. He worked in fashion publications as a reporter and editor. “I never imagined having a business like today. After a season in Europe working at agencies in Milan and Paris, I learned that there was a keen eye for representing brands and building relationships with people. It was in 2002. When I returned to Brazil to organize my move, some brands approached me. When I realized, I already had a CNPJ and clients. I started as an image consultancy, and over 20 years the business has evolved, but the beliefs are the same: communicating brands to people, no matter who they are.”

Ana believes that the preponderance of women in public relations is because the job requires “smart intuition to know and understand what will actually work well, a good dose of emotion to manage people and their egos, and a a condition to carry out a series. activities at the same time, not neglecting the smallest details. All of these, she adds, are “characteristics that women instinctively carry. We tended to be less explosive, more listening, points that put us in a more strategic and less operational position.”

The executive director of PROS Comunicação agency Fernanda Chernobilsky has a similar opinion. “I think one of the main reasons is that doing PR requires a lot of attention to the current context, and women are more sensitive to capturing these messages and turning them into powerful narratives. We also noticed a feminine ability to see multiple focus points at the same time (holistic vision) and ease of dealing with people, working with flexibility and kindness, essential qualities in our market.”

Almost an exception among her career colleagues, Fernanda graduated in engineering, but insists that her orientation has always been communication. After a few years in manufacturing, it decided to move into customer service to be closer to the brands ultimate strategy. With a proven track record in live marketing, brand experience, PR activation, branded content and influencer marketing, he has over 25 years of experience at large agencies in segments like BFerraz, Rock, Hands among others and counting. great work and awards including Best Customer Service Professional at the Ampro Globes Awards.

Fernanda’s partner at PROS, CEO Daniela Graikar, started working in PR early. he opened his first agency at the age of 19. Today, he is the co-leader of a team of 120 professionals of the PROS agency. She also leads the Aladas Movement in support of women’s leadership and entrepreneurship, and is one of the directors of the WOB – Women on Board seal. “I started in the PR world when I was still in college at the age of 17. I soon realized my calling and passion for building a brand reputation. At the age of 19, I decided to open my first PR agency and since then I have followed with interest the adoption of creative strategies for each solution. The ability to serve the most diverse sectors of the economy and build strategies that mix delivery formats is what always renews the PR mind and my desire to continue in the field,” he says.

PROS handles accounts for Grupo Boticário, Grupo Petrópolis, Bauducco, Mercado Livre, Huggies, Intimus, Vibra, Porto and 20 other clients mixing content production , activation, influencer marketing and strong press relations to amplify big ideas. . It has a team of over 120 employees.

It’s not all flowers on the well-trodden path for PR professionals. Having worked in the industry for 13 years, businessman Denise Delalamo, owner of the architecture and design agency that bears her name, recalls a phrase from the film Triângulo da Tristeza, a satire of customs that is competing for three Oscar statuettes this year: synthesize a reality that still persists in the labor market as a whole. “There is a very interesting statement of one of the heroes, a model agent. “the only market where women earn more than men is fashion.”

She says women still deal with a number of “reflections of structural misogyny” today. “Including communications, look at how long it took for a woman to become an anchor, for example, it wasn’t until 1976 in the US with Barbara Walters. And pay equity is still a contentious issue in this sector, as it is in almost every other.”
Denise believes that the predominance of women in PR is because “it’s a job that requires more than technical knowledge and diplomacy. It requires finesse in dealings and great flexibility to manage crises. Although these predicates are not exclusively feminine, we were conditioned to overcome previously insurmountable obstacles, to overcome ourselves in these ways,” she says.

As for what made her join PR, Denise says she chose to work with communications out of passion. “I’ve always liked people and brands. I started as an architect consultant, which was a springboard to an agency specializing in architecture, design, design and construction. I learned and made many connections and after eight years at this agency I decided to open my own, Denise Delalamo Comunicação. I started in my room at my parents’ house and as I always developed relationships, I soon acquired two very important brands and slowly grew and built a team. This trajectory is a little more than 20 years old, and I think the most important thing is the need to reinvent yourself, be open to change and learn.”

Read the full story in the March 6 issue

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