Most categories saw improvement.

January 2003 —Business-to-business advertising figures for November 2002 indicate that ad spending is once again poised for growth. That’s according to a report from Business Information Network, which tracks B-to-B ad spending and pages in 12 megacategories. In the majority of the categories, spending was up from the same period last year.

Overall, ad dollars were up 1.6% compared to November 2001, while pages were down 4.5%. Year-to-date spending decreased by 15.2% and pages by 15.9%.

November 2002 B-to-B Ad Spending
(in millions of dollars)

Megacategory November
2002
November 2001 % Change
Finance, Business & Advertising 117,399.3 120,433.6 -2.52%
Telecommunications 15,505.1 26,727.1 -41.99%
Computers 53,197.2 52,206.7 1.90%
Software 60,240.2 66,010.0 -8.74%
Manufacturing & Electrical
Equipment, Materials & Components
51,490.4 51,575.2 -0.16%
Drugs & Toiletries/PERQ 76,603.2 69,763.2 9.80%
Horticulture & Farming 13,618.4 12,142.1 12.16%
Services, Direct Response, Classified 107,685.8 106,974.2 0.67%
Retail 47,607.1 47,910.2 -0.63%
Home & Building 42,643.9 38,581.7 10.53%
Automotive 30,166.4 25,520.0 18.21%
Travel 40,713.5 28,540.8 42.65%
TOTAL 656,870.4 646,384.9 1.62%
Source: American Business Media

Ad Spending

Seven categories showed improvement in ad spending in November 2002 compared to the same period the year before.Highbrow:

  • The Travel sector led the way, with a 42.7% jump in ad dollars.
  • Automotive was up 18.2%;
  • Horticulture & Farming up 12.2%;
  • Home & Building up 10.5%;
  • Drugs & Toiletries up 9.8%;
  • Computers up 1.9%; and
  • Services, Direct Response & Classified up 0.7%.

The remaining categories were down:

  • Finance, Business & Advertising by 2.5%;
  • Telecommunications by 42%;
  • Software by 8.7%;
  • Manufacturing by 0.2%;
  • Retail by 0.6%.

Quarter-to-Date B-to-B Ad Spending
(as of November 2002; in millions of dollars)

Megacategory QTD 2002 QTD 2001 % Change
Finance, Business & Advertising 239,186.3 268,012.0 -10.76%
Telecommunications 31,813.4 54,036.8 -41.13%
Computers 99,280.2 108,942.5 -8.87%
Software 118,562.3 138,312.8 -14.28%
Manufacturing & Electrical
Equipment, Materials & Components
109,799.0 114,035.1 -3.71%
Drugs & Toiletries/PERQ 156,335.1 141,721.2 10.31%
Horticulture & Farming 25,164.1 23,549.2 6.86%
Services, Direct Response, Classified 228,085.9 236,220.8 -3.44%
Retail 95,923.0 98,860.0 -2.97%
Home & Building 93,266.0 87,087.1 7.09%
Automotive 58,009.2 56,044.7 3.51%
Travel 81,532.6 65,993.7 23.55%
TOTAL 1,336,956.9 1,392,816.0 -4.01%
Source: American Business Media

Ad Pages

Leading the field in ad pages in November was the Travel category, up 33.4%.

  • Automotive was up 5%;
  • Drugs & Toiletries up 3.3%; and
  • Home & Building up 1%.

Telecommunications continued to be the hardest hit, with a 41.9% decline.

  • Finance, Business & Advertising fell by 11.8%;
  • Computers were down 4.2%; Software down 15.6%;
  • Manufacturing & Electrical Equipment, Materials & Components down 11.9%;
  • Horticulture & Farming down 8.3%;
  • Services, Direct Response & Classified down 6.2%; and
  • Retail down 4%.

Year-to-Date B-to-B Ad Spending
(as of November 2002; in millions of dollars)

Megacategory YTD 2002 YTD 2001 % Change
Finance, Business & Advertising 1,173,612.1 1,519,292.0 -22.75%
Telecommunications 175,342.8 316,489.2 -44.60%
Computers 471,754.9 591,423.1 -20.23%
Software 624,824.1 772,411.0 -19.11%
Manufacturing & Electrical
Equipment, Materials & Components
565,332.0 692,817.1 -18.40%
Drugs & Toiletries/PERQ 821,702.9 800,320.4 2.67%
Horticulture & Farming 139,588.9 173,290.3 -19.45%
Services, Direct Response, Classified 1,144,391.7 1,355,108.7 -15.55%
Retail 444,677.0 484,276.2 -8.18%
Home & Building 470,435.0 479,704.5 -1.93%
Automotive 258,021.0 268,702.8 -3.98%
Travel 364,142.5 389,779.6 -6.58%
TOTAL 6,653,824.9 7,843,615.0 -15.17%
Source: American Business Media

“We’re forecasting that B-to-B ad spending will be up about 3% in the first quarter of 2003, and the November data supports our projection,” said Gordon Hughes, president & CEO of American Business Media. “The fact that ad spending in November was up from the year before is a good indicator of what’s to come.”

To get the complete report, visit American Business Media’s Web site.

American Business Media, the association for B-to-B media companies, has 222 member companies representing more than 1,200 publications in 181 industries.