Surge in Spending on Media Intelligence Software & Information

• Total spending tops USD5.5 billion in 2021, up 14.7%, on continued demand for social media tools and insights and bounce-back in press release spending

Annual spending on Media Intelligence solutions for public relations professionals is now over USD5.5 billion, with 14.7% year-on-year growth, according to a new report published by Burton-Taylor International Consulting (part of the TP ICAP group).

The analysis shows that customer demand for social media management tools and insights into the impact of communications activities again kept the overall market in growth mode in 2021, further helped by a surge in spending on press release distribution, which had fallen back the previous year during the early stages of the coronavirus pandemic.

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While most of the largest suppliers of Media Intelligence services enjoyed double-digit revenue growth in 2021 through a combination of organic growth and acquisitions, there were other notable market drivers.

“While the larger providers had a better year than in 2020, there is still a really noticeable trend for buyers to turn towards smaller and more nimble suppliers,” said report author Chris Porter, Director at Porter Walford Consulting and a consultant to Burton-Taylor.

“We’ve seen renewed acquisition activity for Cision and Meltwater in 2021, but also transformational moves for Onclusive and Kantar, as well as Access Intelligence and Isentia”, Porter added. “Meanwhile we’ve again seen significant growth from established mid-sized suppliers such as CARMA, Infomedia and The RepTrak Company, as well as newer-generation names such as Muck Rack, PublicRelay, Roxhill Media, ACCESSWIRE, NewsWhip, Truescope and others”.

The report again highlights the rapid growth of social media software tools such as Sprinklr and Sprout Social, as well as significant expansion in the social media space by Meltwater – integrating specialized social solution vendors Linkfluence and Klear – and Cision, absorbing Brandwatch. It also shows how tool providers are responding to hot topics such as environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues.

“This is Burton-Taylor’s tenth annual report on this market and we still see no end to the mergers and acquisitions activity in this market,” said Robert Iati, Director of Strategic Consulting at Burton-Taylor.

“There is also a wave of private equity and venture capital funding coming into the market, which reflects both the growth we have identified and the sense that public relations and communications professionals still have unmet needs.”

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