From 1st January 2010, APA, the membership organisation representing the editorialised branded content industry, previously a subsidiary of the PPA, becomes an independent association.
The customer publishing industry continues to grow and latest Mintel figures estimate that by 2012 the industry will be worth £1 billion.
The move follows APA’s need to develop initiatives specifically tailored to its burgeoning membership in order to add even more value to its relationship with its member companies.
In addition to traditional customer publishing agencies that produce both print and digital branded content for clients; digital agencies, creative agencies and international agencies are increasingly developing editorial content initiatives for their clients and are expressing interest in joining the APA, as proven by the high level of non-member entries to the International Customer Publishing Awards in November 2009.
The inaugural awards celebrated excellence in editorialised branded content from websites, video and podcasts, through to e-zines and printed titles.
The APA Digital Audit carried out last year revealed that 15 per cent of the industry’s output is attributed to digital or integrated activity. That figure will already have been exceeded and is set to grow rapidly.
As a result a key objective of APA moving forward is to support this stream of revenue through bespoke initiatives designed to showcase the power of digital editorialised branded content. In 2010 APA aims to build on its award-winning (Memcom 2009 Overall Communications Award) communication strategy to further enhance its service to its members and encourage new strategic partnerships.
APA will continue to operate from the same open plan offices with PPA and the two organisations will share resources where it creates extra value for their membership such as legal, distribution and environmental issues.
Julia Hutchison, COO of APA comments: “Our decision to become an independent entity reflects our ongoing strategy for business growth and diversification amongst our increasing membership. Our New Year’s resolution is a desire to become even closer to our members and focus specifically on activity that benefits them.
"This is particularly crucial given the current economic climate and the continued fragmentation of the marketing mix. 2010 is set to be an exciting year for our particular industry. We are confident that our programme of research, training, events, new business generation and client retention services, combined with our new independent status means that we will ensure that the editorialised branded content industry will continue to grow in the new decade and beyond.”
Eric Verdon-Roe, Consultant to the PPA added: "Trade associations need to work more closely together, especially at times of change such as we are experiencing at present. I believe that the independence of the APA will still allow both organisations to work very closely together on matters of joint concern but also to dedicate our respective activities and resource to the specialised needs of our members.
"I hope that this relationship will be the model for closer co-operative ventures between PPA and other organisations that share similar interests with us. I wish APA great success and look forward to PPA working closely with them."
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