Budget conditions continue to improve this month, details Warc [pdf] in its latest Global Marketing Index. The budget component of the index improved to a reading of 52.4 this month from 51.7 in February, as Europeans recorded budget growth (50.5) for the first time since the index’s beginning in October 2011. (A score above 50 indicates a generally improving environment, while a score below 50 indicates a generally declining environment.) The budget index remained strongest in the Americas, though it was relatively unchanged from the prior month, at 55.4. In the Asia-Pacific region, the budget score improved to 51.2 after crossing into positive territory last month.
- The global index for staffing levels continued to rise, up from a score of 57.6 last month to 58.2 this month, nearing the “rapidly expanding” territory represented by a score of 60. The Americas again had the highest reading, of 59.4 (down from 62.1), while marketers in the Asia-Pacific (58) and Europe (56.6) also reported positive sentiment.
- The index for trading conditions rose to 60, signifying rapid expansion. The Americas again registered the highest reading, at 62.3, followed by the Asia-Pacific (59.5) and Europe (57.9).
- The headline global marketing index (GMI), comprised of the budget, staffing, and trading conditions components, improved to 56.9, from 56.2 in February. March marks the fourth consecutive month of improvement, and its value is the second highest in the index’s history, behind only April 2012’s 58.1.
About the Data: Warc’s global panel (1,225 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.
Data collection period: 4-15 March 2013. 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.