According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics survey, in 2021 the median annual income of a PR pro (labeled in the survey as Public Relations Specialist) was $73,250. Journalists on the other hand, made $63,230, for a pay gap of $10,020.
This gap, states Muck Rack, “marks a 68% increase from the 2020 gap, when PR pros had a median annual income of $71,940 and journalists had $66,000 for a difference of $5,940.
“If a $10K pay gap sounds like a lot, it is—but it’s not as high as 2016, when PR pros ($58,020) made $19,150 more than journalists ($38,870).”
According to Muck Rack:
“In 2020, BLS reported 244,550 PR pros in the US. In 2021, that number dropped to 242,710. During the same time period, the median annual income of PR pros increased from $71,940 to $73,250. The number of journalists also dipped in between 2020 to 2021 from 41,580 to 39,080. Meanwhile, their pay decreased from $66,000 to $63,230.
“PR pros have long outnumbered journalists, and that trend continues. In 2020, the ratio of PR pros relative to journalists was 5.8:1, and in 2021 that number increased to 6.2:1. The median age of a PR pro is 42, while the median age of a journalist is 35.
“Geographically speaking, New York, followed by California, has the highest numbers of PR pros and journalists employed. After New York and California, Texas, Washington, D.C., and Florida had the highest number of PR pros. For journalists, Texas, Florida and Georgia were in the top five.”
More from Muck Rack here.
Artwork: Muck Rack