2022 Marketing Consulting, Branding & PR Industry Report

Posted on May 11, 2022 By

The Global Marketing Consulting Market

The global marketing consulting market is expected to grow by $3.83 billion between 2022 and 2026, increasing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.75%.

Market growth is being driven by various factors, including continued education, the rising need for improved customer digital experiences, and the providing of custom-made solutions.

Because the global marketing consulting market is rather fragmented, we are seeing vendors trying to remain competitive by deploying growth strategies such as forming strategic partnerships. Over the next four years, 35% of the global market’s growth will originate from North America. 

The Marketing Consulting Market in the U.S.

There are currently 224,884 marketing consulting businesses in the U.S. That represents an increase of 3.6% from 2021. Between 2017 and now, the number of marketing consulting companies has also grown by 3.6% per year on average. The states with the most marketing consulting businesses are:

  • California (6,688)
  • Florida (4,593)
  • New York (2,862)

A Rapidly Growing Segment

Some marketing consulting firms are growing 3.5 times faster than their competitors. These companies can beconsidered “high growth” when they have a CAGR of 20% or greater over a three-year period. So, what is leading to this rapid growth?


Amid widespread labor shortages and the Great Resignation, the battle for finding and retaining key talent is stronger than ever. All marketing consulting firms are engaged in the battle, but the high-growth firms have an advantage.


High-growth marketing consulting companies have a significant advantage when they excel at the overall adoption and implementation of business software & automation products.


The high-growth firms are demonstrating that they are better at creating high-quality content that organically draws traffic to their websites, while also positioning themselves as credible thought leaders. Two of the most prominent reasons for this success are keyword & search engine optimization (SEO) techniques, and the publishing of original research.


Mergers and acquisitions have played a significant role for the marketing consulting industry. The top M&A strategies for high-growth companies focus on workflow and process automation, finding and retaining top talent, and optimizing technology.

Ready to explore your exit and growth options? 

The Branding Agencies Market 

The global branding agencies market has been growing at a rapid rate. The market is expected to increase at a CAGR of 5.5% over the next six years, with the rising adoption of strategies by key players.

Strong branding strategies and brand management can launch and support a company's long-term success, setting it apart from the competition. These aspects have always been valuable in the marketing world, but are being recognized for their importance more than ever during a time where companies need to build strong relationships with their customers by offering value-added services, innovative products, and high-quality experiences.

On the basis of region, the branding agency market is segmented into North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and Middle East & Africa. North America continues to hold the major market share, with the largest region being the U.S., where there is continued growth in the use of branding agencies.

The branding agency market is segmented into various applications: Brand Development, Brand Launch, and Brand Management.

Brand Development

In the development phase, a new brand needs to have awareness generated by branding agencies. During this stage, agencies focus on acquiring customers and building loyalty through effective marketing strategies. Branding experts craft strategies to drive the brand’s popularity with potential customers.

Brand Launch

A brand represents a product or service’s identity in the market. Branding agencies help companies launch a new brand or re-launch an existing one, especially through online media channels, to create relationships with consumers.

Brand Management

Branding agencies help to generate new products, maintain customer satisfaction, and drive sales. Their expertise provides key insights into market demand, which guides the decision-making process for brand strategies. They also conduct competitive research, support customer satisfaction, and drive revenue by managing the customers’ life cycle.


Growth Factors for the Branding Agencies Market

  • Leading brands are shifting more focus towards global marketing and more inventive digital marketing strategies.
  • Small businesses’ growing demand for branding and creative services.
  • Increasing advertising budgets from companies in order to promote their brand image online through platforms including social media and website presence.

Feeling unfulfilled? Explore your options...


The Public Relations Market

The global public relations market is forecast to grow from $92.55 billion in 2021 to $102.80 billion in 2022. That is at a CAGR of 11.1%. The growth is largely due to businesses having to rearrange their operations during recovery from the impacts and operational challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. The global PR market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 9.8% to reach $149.44 billion in 2026.

The public relations market is made up of private and public PR firms. PR companies design, implement, and manage communications between an organization and its customers. Public relations tactics are executed through various mediums, such as events, social media, websites, TV, print, and others. These tactics are employed across most industries, including retail, consumer goods, government and the public sector, IT & telecom, healthcare, and media & entertainment.

The PR market relies largely on the collection, storage, and use of personal information for media relations. Stringent data collection regulations have proven to be a challenge for the market, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). These regulations focus on privacy and data protection, so that governments can enforce data protection laws to protect consumers against unfair practices. For PR companies to comply with GDPR, they must publish a data protection policy explaining the type of data they maintain, what they will do with it, and with whom they will share it. The policy must also explain how requests to reveal, change, or delete data are handled, as well as data security plans. Because the data must be collected with more caution, and it gives individuals the option to not provide personal information, it is a possible restraint for the PR market.

More and more PR companies have been investing in programmatic PR in the digital medium for the automation of advertising, switching over from manual tasks to artificial intelligence. Programmatic PR boosts transparency, has better targeting capabilities, and improves the area of reach. These advancements will help drive the PR market’s growth.

The Marketing Agency M&A Outlook

Since the start of the pandemic, consumers have been refocusing their priorities, and employees have been looking at work differently, so marketers have to rethink how they do things. M&A strategies will continue to be utilized for talent acquisition, mid-size companies seeking exit strategies, increasing private investment, and premium pricing for digital-related transactions. Plus, agencies, holding companies, management consultants, and private equity firms are looking to expand into the marketing sector, which means that mergers and acquisitions are likely to maintain steady momentum.

Distress sales are also a major driver of deals in the marketing space. Many business owners are looking for a way out after a tumultuous couple of years. M&A activity among regional, mid-size, independent agencies is expected to be the most dynamic that it's been in several years. Larger, stronger agencies may view this as the right time for M&A growth strategies to acquire top talent and key clients. And thanks to working-from-home and Zoom meetings becoming the norm, geography is no longer a factor, making more deals more possible.

Agencies will also turn to M&A to update their business models in response to changes that their clients have made since the onset of the pandemic. Companies are more acutely aware than ever how much they need digital transformation. Among the top M&A targets (and the top valuations) will continue to be firms that concentrate on ad tech, analytics, and performance marketing.

Outside investment from private equity is also expected to surge as agencies find ways to improve their clients’ profitability in a digital-first world. This means more lead generation and customer acquisition capabilities.

Schedule A Call

Americas: Sam Smoot at +1 (813) 898 2350 /

Europe: Michael Lawrie at +44 (0) 161 359 4400 /

Africa: Anthony McCardle at +27 21 300 2055 / 


Benchmark International’s global offices provide business owners in the middle market and lower middle market with creative, value-maximizing solutions for growing and exiting their businesses. To date, Benchmark International has handled engagements in excess of $8.25B across various industries worldwide. With decades of global M&A experience, Benchmark International’s deal teams, working from 14 offices across the world, have assisted thousands of owners with achieving their personal objectives and ensuring the continued growth of their businesses.





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