World Economics - Insight , Analysis and Data

World Economics - Insight , Analysis and Data

Global Marketing Index

Released: November 20, 2014

European marketing activity outpaces Asia and Americas in November

  • Trading conditions buoyant in all regions
  • Expenditure on traditional media down
  • Staff levels continue to rise in all regions

The Headline Global Marketing Index (GMI) for November registered a value of 56.5, up by 0.2 on its value in October. Marketers are continuing to experience strong business activity across the world at a steady rate of increase. Buoyant marketing activity was recorded in each region with values for the Headline Index of 58.1 in Europe, 55.9 in the Asia-Pacific area and 55.9 in the Americas respectively. In Europe, however, the Index indicated a slight acceleration in the rate of growth in marketing activity with a rise of 0.9 in the Index value.

Trading Conditions by Region
Panellists reported that Trading Conditions were strong and growing in each region. The Index for Trading Conditions in Europe reversed a fall in October to rise by 1.9 in November to reach 61.4. In the Americas, Trading Conditions were reported to be strong, but the Index was unchanged at 59.0 while in the Asia-Pacific region the value of the Index increased by 2.1 to register a value of 61.2 in November. This was the third successive monthly increase in the value of the Index in that region.

Global Marketing Budgets
The Index for Global Marketing Budgets slowed by 0.6 to register a value of 53.4. This is back to the level reached in September, but this is still the 23rd successive month that the Index has registered that panellists were experiencing rises in the amount of resources devoted to marketing.

Marketing Budgets by Region
The monthly changes in Marketing Budgets for all regions exhibited growth although at different rates. In Europe after a fall in October the recorded Index of Marketing Budgets bounced back to rise by 1.1 to reach a value of 56.0. In the Americas, in contrast, the Index fell by 1.5 to record a value of 52.0.

The outlier was the Asia-Pacific region where the Index fell by 4.3 to record a value of 50.9 taking it close to the 50.0 no change value. Marketing Budgets in this region have been volatile in the past year and panellists last recorded a drop in marketing expenditure in August 2014 when the Index fell to 48.2.

Marketing Budgets by Medium
In terms of the marketing budget allocation by medium across the world, all media saw a reduction in expenditure apart from Digital and Mobile with Index values recorded in November of 75.4, down by 1.0 and 70.5, up by 2.3 respectively. This indicates very strong growth in the resources allocated to these media.

Panellists recorded that the absolute amount spent on TV budgets across the world has fallen only very slightly with an Index value recorded in November of 49.6, just below the 50.0 no change level. The index for TV budgets also indicated a contraction in the Americas at with an Index value of 44.8 and in the Asia-Pacific region at 48.5. In Europe, the value of the TV Index for November showed modest growth in the resources allocated to the medium with an Index value of 54.4, down by 2.0 on October and the second successive monthly decrease.

Print continued its global contraction as an advertising medium with an Index value recorded in November of 34.6, down by 2.0 on October. This pattern of declining expenditure allocated to the medium was replicated in all regions.

The Index values for Radio and Out-of-Home (OOH) also indicated continued contraction in the proportion of budgets allocated to these media with global index values of 42.2, down by 0.8, and 46.4, down by 2.1 respectively. The only region where growth was seen in the OOH medium, the Asia-Pacific region last month, saw a contraction in November. In this region the Index fell by 4.9 to 49.0, below the 50.0 no change level.

Staffing Levels
The Staffing Index reflects the number of staff taken on compared to the same period last year.

The Staffing Level index registered a value of 55.9 in November, up by 0.3 on the previous month indicating that marketing departments are still adding staff. On a regional basis, the Staffing Levels Index fell by 0.5 in Europe, but rose by 0.8 in the Asia-Pacific region and by 1.5 in the Americas.

World Economics Chief Executive Ed Jones commented on the release:

“The Headline Global Marketing Index reading for November indicates that marketers are seeing strong business activity and showing solid growth in all regions with a slight acceleration reported in Europe. The only media increasing their share of advertising budgets in all regions were Digital and Mobile. Marketers also report that staffing levels continue to rise.”


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The Global Marketing Index results are calculated by taking the percentage of respondents that report that the activity has risen (“Increasing") and adding it to one-half of the percentage that report the activity has not changed (“Unchanged"). Using half of the “Unchanged" percentage effectively measures the bias toward a positive (above 50 points) or negative (below 50 points) index. As an example of calculating a diffusion index, if the response is 40% “Increasing," 40% “Unchanged," and 20% “Reducing," the Diffusion Index would be 60 points (40% + [0.50 x 40%]). A value of 50 indicates "no change" from the previous month.

The more distant the index is from the amount that would indicate "no change" (50 points), the greater the rate of change indicated. Therefore, an index value of 58 indicates a faster rate of increase than an index value of 53, and an index value of 40 indicates a faster rate of decrease than an index value of 45. A value of 100 indicates all respondents are reporting increased activity while 0 indicates that all respondents report decreased activity.

About the Global Marketing Index 
The World Economics Global Marketing Index (GMI) provides a unique monthly indicator of the state of the global marketing industry, by tracking current conditions among marketers.

Our global panel (1,000+ members) consists of experienced executives working for brand owners, media owners, creative and media agencies and other organisations serving the marketing industry. The panel has been carefully selected to reflect trends in the three main global regions: Americas, Asia Pacific and Europe.

About World Economics
World Economics is an organisation dedicated to producing analysis, insight and data relating to questions of importance in understanding the world economy.

Currently our primary research objective is to encourage and assist the development of better and faster measures of economic activity. In cases where we believe we can contribute directly, as opposed to through highlighting the work of others, we are producing our own measures of economic activity.

Our work is mainly of interest to investors, organisations and individuals in the financial sector and to significant corporations with global operations, as well as governments and academic economists.

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