Key findings from our investigation into advertising and PR spending among trade groups

Key findings:

  • Washington, D.C.’s biggest trade groups often put far more money into advertising and public relations than into lobbying.
  • We know how much industry spends to lobby the government, but spending on public relations faces far less disclosure.
  • By industry sector, the biggest clients of PR services are energy and natural resources associations.
  • All five of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s top contractors in 2010 and 2012 were advertising agencies.
  • PR giant Edelman collected $346.8 million from trade groups from 2008-2012, way more than any other communications firm.
  • Industries relying most on PR campaigns are usually those facing the heaviest regulation and public contempt.