Business Marketing - How Big Is Business Marketing?

How Big Is Business Marketing?

Hutt and Speh (2001) note that "business marketers serve the largest market of all; the dollar volume of transactions in the industrial or business market significantly exceeds that of the ultimate consumer market." For example, they note that companies such as GE, DuPont and IBM spend more than $60 million a day on purchases to support their operations.

Dwyer and Tanner (2006) say the purchases made by companies, government agencies and institutions "account for more than half of the economic activity in industrialized countries such as the United States, Canada and France."

A 2003 study sponsored by the Business Marketing Association estimated that business-to-business marketers in the United States spend about $85 billion a year to promote their goods and services. The BMA study breaks that spending out as follows (figures are in billions of dollars):

  • Trade Shows/Events -- $17.3
  • Internet/Electronic Media -- $12.5
  • Promotion/Market Support -- $10.9
  • Magazine Advertising -- $10.8
  • Publicity/Public Relations -- $10.5
  • Direct Mail -- $9.4
  • Dealer/Distributor Materials -- $5.2
  • Market Research -- $3.8
  • Telemarketing -- $2.4
  • Directories -- $1.4
  • Other -- $5.1

The fact that there is such a thing as the Business Marketing Association speaks to the size and credibility of the industry. BMA traces its origins to 1922 with the formation of the National Industrial Advertising Association. Today, BMA, headquartered in Chicago, has more than 2,000 members in 19 chapters across the country. Among its members are marketing communications agencies that are largely or exclusively business-to-business-oriented.

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