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In 2011 Canadian businesses spent $29 billion on marketing activities, of which $14.4 billion was spent on advertising. According to Canadian Marketing Association, the sector supports nearly 1.1 million jobs, constituting 6.3% of total employment. Firms in Ontario accounted for over half of all revenues generated by the industry. The Institute of Canadian Advertisers (ICA) is the largest business association for communications and advertising, its members accounting for 75% of all national advertising in Canada in 2008. Statistics Canada has attributed the continuing rising revenues in the sector partly to the growth in display advertising services, primarily led by the adoption of new technologies. The industry is expected to continue to grow at an average rate of 3.7% a year between 2012 and 2016, slightly lower than the average rate of 5.5% between 2002 and 2007.
The major international agencies operate in the country, alongside numerous prominent local firms. The advertising agencies awards of Canada’s Marketing magazine in 2011 were dominated by local firms, which continue to take on high-profile and creative campaigns. Notable examples amongst these include Sid Lee, the winner of the agency of the year.
The Canadian marketing industry is substantial, with the internet-marketing sector alone worth US$3.5 billion in 2011. The primary industry association is the Canadian Marketing Association, which represents approximately 800 corporate members. The field is dominated by the major international brands. The 2011 marketing magazine award for marketer of the year went to the Maple Leaf Foods, with the shortlist including such brands as Volkswagen Canada, Canadian Tire, RBC, McDonald’s Canada and Mars Canada.
PR is done in-house as well as by dedicated PR firms, notable examples of which are Apex Public Relations, Argyle Communications, and Strategic Objectives. The Canadian Council of Public Relations is one of the trade associations that represents this industry.
The World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report (2012-13) placed Canada 14th out of 144 countries in terms of the extent of marketing, with a score of 5.4 out of 7. Coming considerably above the mean of 5.4 out of 7, the rankings indicate the use of sophisticated marketing tools and techniques by companies in the country is more extensive than average. This position was reflected in terms of buyer sophistication, for which Canada ranked 12th with a score of 4.6, above the mean of 3.5, suggesting buyers are more likely to make purchasing decisions based on a sophisticated analysis of performance attributes rather than based solely on price.
In 2011 retailers spread their marketing spend across different media, with 20% going each to television, daily newspapers and radio. Retailers have been relatively slow to adopt online advertising, with 10.2% spent on digital ads compared to 18% in other industries. Industry media varied according to retail sector – auto manufacturers and dealers spent a large proportion on dailies, financial and insurance companies utilised direct mail, the food and entertainment industries relied on television commercials, and the media industry spent much of their advertising dollars online. The Canadian Marketing Association predicts that mobile advertising will have the most significant average growth between 2012 and 2016.
|Advertising, Marketing and PR organisations in Canada|
|Canadian Marketing Association||