17 Firms That the New York Observer ‘Top 50’ List Missed


Ye Olde New York Observer is known to be a publication that’s relatively friendly to PR pros who aren’t named Mark Penn. One prominent executive regularly publishes op-eds in its pages!

In case you missed it, the paper revealed its list of The Big Apple’s Top 50 PR Firms yesterday. The feature was extensive; beyond the basic list it included a “9 people to watch” slideshow and other little profiles shedding a bit of light on the people who make this industry run.

For the record, everyone who made the list deserves a spot on it. The people of #1 pick Sunshine Sachs always invite us to their holiday parties.

Still, this being a list, it did fail to mention a few worthy firms…sort of like those SEO trick “top entertainment PR” posts that show up in our Google alerts every week.

Back in September, we thought of a few people off the top of our heads who didn’t make the Business Insider “top tech firms” list. Now let’s do the same for the Observer group.

First, you’ll note that the NYO editors admit that the methodology behind this grouping was not scientific:

“We look at an agency’s clients, connections, reputation, visibility and the kinds of situations where it’s been involved over the last year…we also consider our own interactions with agencies.”

So the criteria for inclusion remain unclear. Here are some omissions:

  • Ketchum: They’re the world’s fourth or fifth-largest firm, depending on who you ask. And yes, they’re based in New York City.
  • MSLGroup: Did they miss the cut because they started in France? And is that really fair?
  • PMK*BNC: We know the paper covers famous people…
  • Waggener Edstrom: They have nearly ten thousand Twitter followers and they release timely studies.
  • Cohn & Wolfe: See above.
  • Gibbs & Soell: See above again, with an emphasis on consumer behavior.
  • Rubenstein Public Relations: The list included one Rubenstein but not the other…
  • Coyne: Because Parsippany might as well be downtown Manhattan. And MWW is technically based in Jersey as well.
  • Spark PR: BetaBeat covers tech. Spark represents tech.
  • Astrsk PR: See above.
  • North 6th Agency: Even more tech!
  • Bender|Helper Impact: They’re not based in New York, but again…
  • Trylon SMR: See above, specifically related to the Big Apple’s Silicon Alley tech scene and the financial powers that make it run.
  • RF|Binder: Because The Big Apple runs on Dunkin’.
  • Crenshaw Communications: Do you not follow Dorothy on Twitter? Why not?
  • Powell’s: See, we know the NYO covers advertising, and they did include DiGennaro…
  • Wise PR: In case you missed it, they throw a great holiday party.

Again, we know this is all arbitrary. But we thought we’d throw a few names out there anyway.

Now who else did the NYO miss?