B-to-b ad pages, revenue continue to slide

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New York--American Business Media’s Business Information Network figures have a new provider but that didn’t change the continued downward trend in b-to-b pages and revenues in the data released Wednesday.

The BIN figures--prepared by IMS/The Auditor, which replaced TNS Media Intelligence/CMR--showed that trade publication ad pages declined 4.56% in January compared with January 2003. Ad revenues declined 2.45%.

The automotive category posted the biggest decline in ad pages, falling 19.66%. The sole gainer was the services, direct response and classified category, which posted an increase of 17.68% in ad pages in January.

IMS’ takeover means that there are some changes in the BIN numbers. First, IMS monitors 800 b-to-b publications compared with the 500-plus titles tracked by CMR. The January 2003 numbers reported by IMS are about $150 million less than the January 2003 numbers reported by CMR. ABM attributed the difference to CMR’s inclusion of Time and other consumer-oriented publications.

What hasn’t changed is ABM President-CEO Gordon Hughes' optimism for the industry's recovery. “Our goal is to provide a more robust and projectable ad tracking system for our industry,” he said in a statement. “For 2004, we are projecting 2% to 4% revenue growth, with most of the growth taking place in the second half of the year.”

--Sean Callahan

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