Porter Novelli was founded in Washington, D.C. in 1972 by William D. Novelli and Jack Porter, advertising executives, who worked together to market the Peace Corps. The company's first major client was the National Institutes of Health, for whom they created the National High Blood Pressure Education Program, a program that the NIH still maintains.
Porter Novelli's consumer practice area showed the most growth in 2008. Among its clients last year were the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, Navy Federal Credit Union, FDIC, Johnson & Johnson Corporate Communications, and Blockbuster Video.
In recent years, Porter Novelli has become known for its use of social media as a marketing tool. Its jack + bill "popup agency," created in September 2008 and led by eight younger Porter Novelli employees (average age 26),
Porter Novelli’s well-known projects include both the old and new USDA Food Pyramid campaigns, the anti-tobacco Truth campaign, and public awareness campaigns regarding climate change and HIV.
Porter Novelli was hired by the Indiana Economic Development Corporation, designated with the task to attract businesses to the state, to rebrand Indiana's image after backlash from the Religious Freedom Restoration Act signed into law in March 2015.
Poerter Novelli provided pro bono services to fledgling fashion designers. Using Flickr, Twitter and YouTube, the company promoted the designers' work for New York's September 2008 Fashion Week.
- "PRWeek profile of Porter Novelli". PRWeek.
- "NHLBI: National High Blood Pressure Education Program, NHLBI, NIH". Nhlbi.nih.gov. 2012-02-15. Retrieved 2012-11-30.
- "Porter Novelli". PRWeek US. 2009-04-27. Retrieved 2012-11-30.
- Leggio, Jennifer (2009-02-19). "Research report: Is 'social PR' for real? Which agencies get it? | ZDNet". Blogs.zdnet.com. Retrieved 2012-11-30.
- Elliott, Stuart (September 16, 2008). "A Pop-Up Agency Shows Off Emerging Talent". The New York Times. Retrieved May 22, 2010.
- Terkel, Amanda (April 13, 2015). "Indiana Hires PR Firm To Rebuild Image After 'Religious Freedom' Fiasco". The Huffington Post. Retrieved April 13, 2015.
- Alexandra Bruell (2008-06-27). "Porter Novelli to open popup fashion agency". PRWeek US. Retrieved 2012-11-30.