Medicom CEO J.K. Lee Invited to ICCO Global Summit in New Delhi of India

Common issue in global PR industry is ‘Asia’…discussed PR in New Delhi
J.K. Lee, “Should actively deal with digital network among independent agencies”Special conference which gathers PR specialists from all over the world, ICCO(International Communication Consultancy Organization) Global Summit 2014 successfully hold in New Delhi, India from October 9 to 10. In its 2014 edition, Medicom CEO J.K. Lee attended and earned huge interest from PR affiliates of the world with presentation regarding topic of a virtual union among among PR agencies in the digital environment.

user image▲Start of ICCO Global Summit 2014 hold in Shangri-La’s – Eros Hotel, New Delhi. PR experts from world arrived at the event hall with its start.

ICCO is an organization which discusses concerns and long term goal for overall growth of PR industry by subjecting world leading PR consultancies. It operates the organization under membership system, and board of management who are in charge of operating organization has two meetings a year including annual ICCO Global Summit and board of management conference. Approximately 30 representatives consist of leaders of continent or nation representing PR firms, has four years of tenure. Their regular meeting is prepared to meet the practical goals of organizations such as quickly updating case studies and know-hows of PR specialized agencies or dealing with ethical issues across overall industries.

user image▲Photo of reception after the main session

In this year’s edition, common issue over global communication industry is explosive growth in Asian market led by China and India. It is clear that ICCO Global Summit 2014 in New Delhi of India reflects the fact. ICCO president David Gallagher(Senior Partner and CEO Europe of Ketchum) mentioned of the venue India as “Region which proves rapid growth of PR industry with creative and efficient methodologies”. Among twenty sessions composing two weeks of conference, most of the sessions covered current issues related to growth in Asian region including India. J.K. Lee also prepared presentation under the topic of significance of “networking among PR agencies” by emphasizing industry level effort aligned with Asia’s growth.
J.K. Lee presented topic of virtual union among PR agencies in the digital environment

Last August, J.K. Lee of Medicom invited as session speaker of ICCO Global Summit 2014. This invitation possess special meaning to Medicom by directly informing its exclusive move which adopted big data mining strategy in PR field and developed new platform for independent PR agencies to the world. It also introduced Medicom’s history which aggressively expanding boundaries of PR from CPR, CPR, crisis management, and digital PR in front of worldly renowned industry leaders including ICCO board managers. J.K. Lee’s presentation gained much attention as Medicom was an only PR company invited in Korea.

user image

▲CEO J.K. Lee in his speech

J.K. Lee’s presentation was under the title of a virtual union among among PR agencies in the digital environment. Considering the visualization of economic growth in Asian market, Lee explained that virtual alliance among companies is possible through SNS platform as a part of effort to build network among PR agencies in each region. However, the newly proposed network has large difference to existing method in terms of efficiency and format. For independent companies, MOU was the only way to expand their network; however, network’s practical effectiveness was hard to expect due to limitations in information sharing coming from cultural, verbal, and geographical difference. Thus, Medicom proposed ‘digital network’ as an alternative.

Evolving communication strategy is a key success factor for Medicom

ICCO Global Summit introduced Medicom as “PR agency which studies and commands communication strategy based on various social media.” By actively responding to media trends, Medicom enlarged scope of PR through social media and continued analysis on social media platform’s fundamentals and trends. In this year, Medicom launched “allpage,” an interest-based social media, which was planned and developed by Medicom. After, the company also developed one platform with evident target and purpose which directly applies to PR industry; the service is a social media for corporations and it increased practicality in networking through sharing information, career, and PR industry.

▲Introduction video of digital network platform which played within presentation. Medicom’s social communications team produced the video clip.

Interest that Medicom’s “SNS for corporations” gained from foreign PR industry leaders were over expectations. They shared same concerns of building efficient network in the industry trend which needs to target global market. And they all agreed on communication method through digital environment that lessens misinterpretations coming from capital, time, nationality, and culture. Intuitive delivering of message by showing video clips or images within short speech time also helped a lot.

Keyword for upcoming PR industry is “Asia”

Among 20 sessions which consisted this ICCO Global Summit, here are the bullet points for Korean PR agencies.


▲Picture of Bob Pickard, Chairman for Asia-Pacific of Huntsworth plc, during his speech

l  Bob Pickard(Chairman for Asia-Pacific of Huntsworth plc) – Global communication for Asian multinational companies: successful product for next generation PR
Almost 200 corporations out of Fortune 500 are Asian companies, and more than hundred are Chinese corporations. However, these multinational companies remain anonymous in foreign regions. For Asia-based corporations of next generations to grow as global companies, they are now reached the status how and where to utilize PR. This phenomenon will rise with the era of social media, and this means it is inevitable result of industrial trend among companies who take PR as an essential function. Center of world economy is moving toward Asia, and Asia would emerge as the most necessary stage for PR communication among different culture.l  Donna Zurcher(Managing Partner, Instinctif Partners) – Partnerships in global communications
As the target market of companies spread out all over the world, agencies must plan the execution of multilateral communications based on understanding of each nation. Shrinking boarder, the world, offers a new challenges and opportunities for the communication industry workers who put multinational PR programs into practice. Markets are newly formed, and geographical boarders between nations keep losing their meanings. At this time, understandings of local characteristics merging into the multinational programs act as a key factor of communication. It is important to form and improve the information network according to the customers’ demand in each region.
Moreover, success depends on the selection of most optimized partners or agencies within the wide boundaries of global PR.


▲ PR agencies’ representatives from various regions who are freely discussing in the event hall

l  Panel Discussions: India, land for challenge and opportunity
As a single market, India is the most diversified market in the world. The country possesses world leading complexity starting from language, consumptions, media, and ethnicity. This characteristic directly appears on the surface when Indian corporations seek business opportunities from abroad. Thus, companies around the globe could find case studies or clues for multinational PR as they research on “global skills” which Indian companies experienced and learned from various markets in other regions.l  Panel Discussions: Emerging of Asian PR
PR experts working in major markets of Asia Pacific region proceeded session in form of panel discussions. Among diverse topics, discussion were made under the topic of efficient communication method to reach targets in Asian nations, challenges and opportunities that PR industry confronts, and Asian PR companies’ competencies in global market.

Press Inquries:
Grace Heeran Kim

Huntsworth Asia Pacific CEO Bob Pickard Interview

user image

▲  Official Image of Huntsworth Asia Pacific CEO Bob Pickard

Now the CEO of Huntsworth Asia Pacific, Bob Pickard is truly a PR veteran who has shown visible achievements all throughout the North American and Asia Pacific region. He has served multiple roles in the past as the vice president of Hii&Knowlton Canada, managing director of Edelman Korea, president of Edelman North Asia and CEO of Burson-Marsteller Asia Pacific. During his term at Edelman Korea, the agency has shown rapid growth under his outstanding management skills, receiving prestigious awards including ‘Office of the Year’ and ‘Consultancy of the Year.’ In our 87th newsletter, we prepared an opportunity to hear how he has entered the PR industry, what he has done, his thoughts on the current PR market of the Asia Pacific region and its future.
Tell us briefly about your background and how you stepped into the PR industry?

I was born in Ottawa, raised in Toronto and majored politics at Queen’s University, Canada. I was interested in political issues that I served as a student activist during college and worked as aide at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Personally, I have learned the basics of communication through all these political activities. Politics is similar to PR in that those involved compete via communication to grasp power and authority.

If political communication targets ‘citizens,’ PR aims ‘consumers’ and the ‘general public.’ What differs is the objective and the overall process is similar. To give a more clear idea, a congressman presents his or her political agenda when running for an election and people vote to select the winning candidate. What about companies? The product of a company reflects the vision and philosophy of the CEO and it is the consumer who decides to purchase which at the market. Thanks to the similarity in the general mechanism of politics and PR, I was able to naturally utilize the communication skills and know-hows that I have learned.

You have been active for the past 25 years while working at major companies like Hill&Knowlton, Edelman and Burson-Marsteller in the Asia Pacific region. What were your most outstanding performances?

While serving as the head of a certain country or the Asia Pacific region, I was in charge of communicative education and consulting, new service development, recruitment, regional office establishment and others. I have given services to clients across various industrial fields like IT, automobile, electronics and pharmaceuticals. A few examples include the Canadian government, Kia Motors, Microsoft and Goldman Sachs. All and throughout, I have done corporate PR, public PR, crisis management, consulting, social media marketing, CSR and others.

user image▲ Members of Edelman Korea during Bob Pickard’s term

I served as the vice president of Hill&Knowlton Canada in 1990 and Environics Communications in 1994 after co-founding the company. While taking the position as managing director of Edelman Korea, I not only supported local companies like Kia motors to stretch overseas, but also helped global companies enter the domestic market. Achieving 309% revenue and 38% net profit growths, Edelman Korea became the largest Asia Pacific regional office. Thus, the office won the title as the ‘Office of the Year’ and ‘Consultancy of the Year’ at the 2004 Asia-Pacific PR Awards. I was also the president of Edelman North Asia in 2004 and established Edelman Japan in Tokyo, expanding it to a group of 30 in only two years.

I was appointed as the CEO of Burson-Marsteller Asia Pacific in 2010 for his astounding performances in Korea, Japan and other regions. I have put in efforts to expand the Asia Pacific PR industry through setting new local offices and recruiting talented individuals as well as generating new businesses such as strengthening global energy industry or digital capability. As a result, Burson-Marsteller Asia Pacific reached a historic growth both in revenue and net profit and I was awarded the ‘PR Agency Head of the Year’ in 2012. Currently I am the CEO of Huntsworth Asia Pacific, a company that operates 73 offices including Citigate and Grayling across 28 countries.

What is your most memorable PR project in Edelman Korea?
While serving as head of Edelman Korea, I earned the privilege of first launching Kia Motors in the global market. Members of the office actively distributed press releases and managed numerous media events, thus achieving over 3 times higher coverage rate YoY from well-known foreign media outlets. During that time, it was not a common phenomenon for regional offices to perform media activities targeting foreign media. Even now, Edelman Korea members still describe the Kia Motors case as a major turning point of overseas publicity.
user image▲ Bob Pickard’s interview article as managing director of Edelman Korea
What was the most difficult thing in Korea?
Obviously Korean was the most difficult part. But I enjoyed the casual time drinking after work with fellow colleagues. I was not able to speak the words but still had no trouble in sharing my thoughts. Now it all became fond memories I hope to repeat.
You have shown exceptional progress in major Asia Pacific regions like Korea, Japan and Singapore. What would be the representative traits of these countries and which country do you think holds the strongest growth potential in terms of PR?

It’s speed for Korea and detail for Japan. As for Singapore, it is the intersection where China and India meets and where culture intersects. I would like to say that Indonesia, the Philippines and India are those that will grow immensely in the future. Both the traditional media and new media of the PR industry are fast-growing in all these three countries. Especially as social media usage increases among the younger generation, the digital PR industry is growing as well as public PR that deals with the government and policies.

Other than these three countries, the Asia Pacific region altogether will become the center of the future PR industry. Just a decade ago, money, idea and technology all came through the western nations. However, now Asia is growing fast and furiously. Over 188 multinational companies in Asia have been listed on the Fortune 500 and all these companies are investing generously in PR as to enter the global market. Since capital is what yields power and authority, I am certain that the region will position itself as the center of the globe.

user image▲ Bob Pickard at the ICCO Global Summit held in New Delhi, India last October

What are skills and attitudes a PR expert should develop?

PR experts are powerful information houses. Since they have to communicate with different stakeholders in different forms, each PR expert should understand the scientific functioning of persuasion and relationships. Also, he or she should instinctively sense on how to earn others’ interest and attention.

Lastly, share a word or two for the Medicom members and CEO JK Lee
There were only 15 people in Medicom when I first visited the place. Now with over 150 people, it has become the largest PR agency in Korea. Of course, the efforts of all the members may have played a huge role in achieving such growth, but I would like to give a round of applause to CEO JK Lee’s leadership. By providing a differentiating service with global agencies and implementing the incentive system, he has made Medicom the largest local PR agency in Korea. He is passionate and certain of his decisions. While he can just walk a stable path, he always challenges himself with new ideas. Also, noting that I cannot stop laughing when I converse with him, I strongly believe his sense of humor has been one of the key factors for the company’s success. I would like to maintain our positive relationship by further discussing potential cooperative opportunities in the coming days.
Press Inquries:
Grace Heeran Kim

2014 Seoul Arirang Festival

Publicity emphasizing the diversity of the event including ‘Dance with Arirang’
Total of 569 successful on·offline coverage through strategic publicity activities

A global cultural event, the 2014 Seoul Arirang Festival was held for three days starting in October 10th. The event attended by over 120 thousand people from Korea and abroad, was planned to spread the culture of participation, communication and sharing through Korea’s national anthem Arirang. Division 3 in charge of the publicity of this year’s event, achieved 569 on·offline coverage across various news outlets including KBS, SBS and MBC by performing strategic publicity.

user image

▲ Official poster of the 2014 Seoul Arirang Festival

The 2014 Seoul Arirang Festival was comprised of five specific programs including ‘Show off Arirang,’ ‘Arirang Traditional Performance,’ ‘Experimental Exhibition Program of Arirang,’ ‘Dance with Arirang’ and ‘Arirang, It’s you.’ This year, 20 thousand more joined the event compared to last year to experience its diverse programs such as making recycled fans with kids, participating in creative dance programs and jumping to famous DJ performances.

Senior Account Executive Lee Kyung-eun of division 3, department 2, team 4 stated, “the event was first started in 2013 to celebrate the naming of Arirang as one of Unesco’s intangible cultural heritage in 2012. Managing publicity for the 2014 Seoul Arirang Festival was truly an honorable experience and we hope all the citizens of Seoul to interact with others, both domestic and global, through our valued cultural property ‘Arirang.’

user image
▲ A father and daughter performing at the ‘Show Off Arirang’ event
(Source: Seoul Arirang Festival Organizing Committee)

The ‘Show Off Arirang’ was a pre-event program held four times starting early September to support the activation of a national donation boom as well as to raise public recognition for the upcoming festival. Participants were able to donate USD 10 under his or her name to the Child Fund Korea after presenting a unique stage recreating the traditional Arirang.

user image
▲ A participant performing the Arirang using the ocarina
(Source: Seoul Arirang Festival YouTube account)
After distributing pre-event press releases, the Medicom team actively promoted the news contents both via SNS channels and websites. Consequently, over 370 people participated in the event, raising total of USD 3740. In fact, videos showing unique versions of the Arirang such as ukulele Arirang and smartphone Arirang were shared through Facebook, receiving heated attention among the public.
user image▲ DJ Koo at the ‘Dance with Arirang’ event(Source: News Chunji)

This year, the festival presented not only traditional forms of Arirang such as the Gangwon-do Arirang and Miryang Arirang but the notion of a fusion Arirang as well. Especially the ‘Dance with Arirang’ that was held on the second day of the event gained massive popularity for combining the modern sentiment of well-known rock bands with the traditional melody of Arirang, thus reproducing a brand new tune.

user image▲‘2,014 pieces of Arirang’ of the 2014 Seoul Arirang Festival(Source: Choice Economy)

Also a special wall was established during the festival. Names the ‘2,014 pieces of Arirang,’ the wall is a citizen-participatory art work in which people could freely attach hand-decorated wooden boards. During the event, over 2,014 pieces of meticulously crafted boards were applied, each with a hopeful message written by children.

user image ▲Print coverage of 2014 Seoul Arirang Festival (Source: From the left Segye Ilbo, Maeil Business Daily)

Account Executive An Sae-mi of division 3, department 2, team 5 delivered her honest thoughts after the event by stating, “I was not aware of such diversity and even during the publicity period, my interest was not high. However after listening to different forms and shapes of Arirang for three consecutive days, I was able to understand the beauty and emotions our national song connotes.”
Press Inquries:
Grace Heeran Kim

CJ Lion’s Cham Green ‘Green Mom’ Gimjang Volunteering Sketch

CJ Lion to practice social activities starting in 2011 through ‘Green Mom’ suppoerters
Total of 30 volunteers to work on 300 heads of napa cabbage for the eldersAs to share the corporate spirit of supporting neighbors, lifestyle goods company CJ Lion held the ‘Gimjang Volunteering’ at the Chungwoon Elder’s Home on November 5th. Gimjang is a traditional practice of preserving Kimchi or fermented Napa cabbage in Korea. Medicom division 2, department 2, team 2 is a long time PR partner of CJ Lion and has been running multiple CSR programs including DIY classes and Korean traditional rice cake sharing since 2011 through the detergent brand Cham Green’s supporting group ‘Green Mom.’The Cham Green ‘Green Mom’ is a gathering of mothers who are interested in preserving the global environment and protecting families through eco-friendly kitchen products. Ever since its first establishment in 2011, it has been active in providing needed support to neighbors.

Social worker Min Jung-a expressed her gratitude to all the volunteers who have come to provide support in a situation where volunteering rate is decreasing. Around 30 people including those from Medicom, CJ Lion employees and the 5th Green Mom members attended the event and successfully made over 300 heads of kimchi for the elders.

user image

The Chungwoon Elder’s Home is the nation’s first free welfare facility for elders and is located in the middle of woody Gugi-dong, Jongno. Already Medicom has formed friendly relationship with the facility after visiting twice in the past: once in 2011 for a similar gimjang activity and in 2012 for a sewing goods give away.

user image
user image

Prior to the actual event, Medicom team mates and CJ Lion employers cooperatively prepared the 300 heads of Napa cabbage and the ingredients in the front yard of the facility.

user image

While the green moms were moving to the facility after having lunch at a nearby restaurant, division 2, department 2, team 2 members were settling down sweet snacks for the volunteers. Account executive Hyun So-young was neatly arranging warm drinks perfect for the cold weather, energizing crackers and chocolates.

user image

After the supporters arrived at the scene, a short briefing session was held at the 2nd floor of the Chungwoon Elder’s Home. Following team leader Kim Ga-won’s introduction of the event schedule, Chungwoon Elder’s Home director Lee Jong Myung and CJ Lion vice president Horiuchi, who made a special visit to participate in the event, also made a short speech.

user image

Outside in the chilly fall weather, Senior Account Executive Rho Eun-hae and Lee Ji-yeon of Medicom was preparing the aprons and rubber gloves for the coming event. Despite the hand-freezing wind, they all showed sincerity by folding each and every piece with care.

user image

CJ Lion employees, members of the 5th Green Mom grouping and Medicom account executives stood in front of the horizontally arranged table. Kimchi master Na Yoon-jung was specially invited to the event to not only share her know-hows on making the most delicious Kimchi, but also to encourage all the volunteers who will be working on total of 300 Napa cabbages.

user image

user image

The long gimjang process continued on, even after 3 hours. Each volunteer handsomely stuffed each cabbage with red fillings and stacked them in a nearby storehouse with speed. The Medicom team, even during the gimjang, continuously checked if there were any help needed and brought the ingredients to people.

user image

After applying the final touch to the 300th cabbage, a special time was arranged to meet the elders of the facility. Account executive Lee Ji-yeon and the 5th Green Mom members headed to the next building, hands heavy with icy patches for swollen legs and juicy fruits. Seeing rooms filled with smiling faces and laughter, it was quite evident that the event ended successfully.

After the event, team leader Kim Ga-won said, “The Chamgreen Green Mom has been with us for the past 5 years and has actively participated in many CSR and nature-driven activities. Being able to link the company with its consumers and to provide a sharing ground with the neglected neighbors around us truly is a meaning thing to achieve. We will continue to plan diverse socially engaging activities.”

Press Inquries:
Grace Heeran Kim

New Public Employment for the Second Half 2014 and Client News

Medicom News

Public Recruitment for the Second Half 2014

Public Relations Firm Medicom (CEO: J.K. Lee) executed new public employment for the second half 2014. The hiring process consisted of resume examination, first executive team interview, and final board member interview. After accomplishing two weeks education from September 22, seven applicants on the list started hands-on work in different departments.

J.K. Lee, CEO at Medicom attended ICCO Global Summit

Medicom CEO J.K. Lee attended ICCO(International Communications Consultancy Organization) Global Summit held in New Delhi of India from October 9 to October 10. With 200 leaders in PR industry around the globe, JK Lee conducted presentation under the topic of “Virtual Alliance of PR Agencies in Digital Environment”.

New Client News

A-Young FBC

A-Young FBC(A-Young Fortune Brands Company) is one of five domestic wine importers which established in 1987 as first company specialized in wine. The company possesses WINENARA, the biggest wine education facility, and operates the largest wine specialized warehouse in Korea. Followed by the mission of ‘selling wine that brings fortune(Fortune Brands Company)’, the company pursues to provide wine with reasonable price and trustworthy quality to consumers. Medicom is in charge of publicity and put effort on setting mature wine consuming culture with A-Young FBC.

Press Inquries:
Grace Heeran Kim

Looking into Medicom through Infographics

In Medicom Newsletter Vol.87, infographics were produced based on the research of Medicomers’ types of residence, housing, and pets. Let’s look into Medicomers’ life.

user image

18% of Medicomers forms single household. And 80% of them answered that they live together with their family including parents, siblings, and spouse.
Most of living-alone Medicomers pointed their reason for single household as far distance from company(87%), and they also picked ‘house chores’(38%) and ‘economic burden’(33%) as their difficulty of living alone.

user image
Living-alone Medicomers for studio, and living-together Medicomers for apartment were most common.
user image
17% of Medicomers reside with pets. The most common case was living with one dog, and Medicomers living with more than 4 pets charge 15% of all Medicomers.
Press Inquries:
Grace Heeran Kim

Burson-Marsteller Managing Director James Yi Talks about the Current Status and Future of the Korean PR Industry

Asian PR market to grow exponentially compared to Europe and the United States

High expectations for providing high-quality integrated service and expanding markets through partnership between Medicom and Burson-Marsteller

user image

▲ Burson-Marsteller Korea Managing Director, James Yi

Last May, James Yi was appointed as the Managing Director of global PR agency Burson-Marsteller Korea. Mr. Yi has extensive experiences in the healthcare field, having worked at global pharmaceutical companies GlaxoSmithKline and Aventis. He joined the agency side with McCann Healthcare based in Singapore and working on regional APAC clients. He also has had experiences in market research before joining Fleishman-Hillard Singapore. Since then, he established MAX Public Relations and served as Managing Director of Ogilvy Public Relations Vietnam.

Medicom, a local agency, has deep connections with global agency Burson-Marsteller Korea. Medicom and Burson-Marsteller Korea signed the MOU at the Burson-Marsteller Asia Pacific headquarter located in Hong Kong. While shown as competitors, Medicom CEO Lee Jae Kook and former Managing Director of Burson-marsteller Korea and now COO of Burson-Marsteller Asia Pacific Margaret Key have maintained close relationships in discussing the diversification of Korean PR industry and globalization.

user image

 ▲ 2012 MOU Scene of Medicom and Burson-Marsteller (From left: Medicom CEO Lee Jae Kook, Former Managing Director of Burson-Marsteller Korea Margaret Key)

Recently, Mr. Lee has met with James Yi, now managing director of Burson-Marsteller Korea, to discuss the specifics of the MOU and strategies to expand the PR industry of Korea as well as Asia. Following the meeting, Medicom ran an interview with Mr. Yi regarding the future management plan of Burson-marsteller Korea and his thoughts on the PR industry as a whole.


Burson-Marsteller Korea’s Market Leader James Yi has worked in various PR markets such as Singapore, Vietnam and now Korea. What do you think are the differences between each country?

I have had the privilege to work in various markets across Asia Pacific, as well as working on regional and global clients based out of Singapore. Although there are many differences among the markets such as a higher ratio of paid media vs earned media, or a media landscape that may be geared more towards digital media vs traditional media, I find two main differences.

The first is that the concept of PR is either more developed or more accepted in certain markets over others. This has significant impact on agency business as the entire market (and clients) has a different level of understanding on the value of PR and how PR agencies can best support them. The second is that the level of investment and education from each market often determines the level of quality of PR per market – in certain markets where post-secondary education in PR is lacking. Burson-Marsteller will invest in training to develop talent in those particular markets so to offer higher quality support for clients.

What are some Asian countries that you expect the PR industry to bloom? Why?

As long as there remains economic advance among the markets within Asia, the PR industry will continue to follow this trend across all markets involved. In companies such as Burson-Marsteller, we can feel business momentum across the region, and realize a rising wave of PR investment in all the markets involved.

PR may be relatively new across Asia, but I believe that the widespread sense that Western PR is somehow superior or more advanced than Asian PR is not really substantiated or valid any longer. The talent is getting much better overall than our Western peers, the pace is as fast if not faster than in the West and I am seeing many regional markets in Asia such as Singapore and Hong Kong from where not only regional but global PR campaigns are driven out of. In addition, markets such as Korea, Japan and China are also now driving global campaigns, as many local Asian companies and brands are moving swiftly to become strong and leading global players.

Burson Marstellar Korea is the first global agency entered Korean market. What are the strengths of overall services that Burson Marstellar provides and in comparison to that, what are the strengths of a local agency Medicom?

Medicom’s biggest strength would be that it provides a holistic solution for its clients with not just traditional PR but also marketing and digital capabilities with a deep understanding of Korea’s local PR market and the local clients. Burson-Marsteller has a long-standing history in Korea, being the first global agency to enter into this market, managing the global communications for the 1988 Seoul Olympics. We have worked extensively since then with both global players wanting to enter into the Korea market as well as local companies looking to expand both regionally as well as globally.

Burson-Marsteller Korea has a long history of focusing a great deal on traditional PR, which includes strategic communications, issues/crisis work and public affairs and government relations. However, Burson-Marsteller Korea has had experience in diverse other areas beyond the traditional, such as social media and brand marketing. We will look to continue to diversify to meet the demands of the evolving media market landscape, thus the partnership with Medicom – we are able to tap onto the digital strength of Medicom to further develop our capabilities. Medicom also offers some production capability as well as being well-integrated in regards to a Korean cultural context.

In some sense, Burson Marstellar Korea and Medicom is in competitive relationship. Moreover, the two has difference as B-M is a global agency while Medicom is a local, independent agency. Do you think that there are ways for these two agencies to have mutual goal and cooperate?

Burson-Marsteller Korea and Medicom have a win-win relationship although we are two different agencies, one global and one local, independent. We can be successful together because we can work collaboratively on the development of new client business both in Korea and overseas. Each partner can offer the services of the other to existing clients to provide a broader range of services where required. In the case of B-M and Medicom, we have the extensive global network of B-M and the depth of the Korea offering of Medicom that we can leverage together for higher value services to our clients, both local and global.

PR agencies are struggling to hire and train talented employees. How is BM Korea trying to resolve this issue?


With the rise of more PR agencies in Korea, it is much more competitive to recruit the best talent. I believe that the PR firm that can attract and champion the top talent will be the firm that wins in the market. Burson-Marsteller Korea has been fortunate to always be able to attract top talent, and we will continue to work hard to do so – there are many factors involved in this including leadership, training, career development, etc. B-M will continue to leverage on its wide international experience and leadership to attract top local talent.

In the future, PR agencies have needs to improve their own companies but to plan for enhancement in Korean PR industry. What does Burson Marstellar want to contribute in Korean PR industry?

I am proud to be part of the Burson-Marsteller family moving forward – I have seen that one of the distinguishing characteristics of B-M is its large pool of talented professionals from all parts of the world as well as its international character. B-M strives to be diverse across markets, and takes the time to better understand each market individually. Burson-Marsteller Korea, as one of the PR pioneers in Korea, will look to continue to set the standard and together with Medicom and other players to raise PR boundaries.

Press Inquries:
Grace Heeran Kim