First Industry-Wide Study on Performance Marketing Size

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PMA estimates size of performance marketing in the United States to be over $6 billion for 2018.

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Performance Marketing Association

The Performance Marketing Association (PMA) will release on August 7, 2019, the first-ever Industry-wide study of its kind, gathering data from eight of the leading affiliate/performance networks and platforms to assess the overall size of the US performance marketing industry.

The study, conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), in conjunction with the PMA, found the performance marketing channel’s adoption has been legitimized by its measurability, trackability, attribution, and compelling return on investment (ROI).

Performance marketing also delivers a very attractive return on ad spend (ROAS) compared to other digital marketing channels. Mobile matters more than ever as consumer shift online shopping behaviors and spend more time online. And content affiliates and bloggers lead the way when it comes to performance marketing ad spend.

Continued Performance & Affiliate Marketing Growth

According to the PMA report, spend on performance marketing in the United States in 2018 is estimated to have been over $6 billion.

By collecting anonymized data from eight major networks and platforms (AWIN, CJ Affiliate, Impact, LinkConnector, Partnerize, Pepperjam, Rakuten Marketing, and ShareASale), along with publicly available data, PwC determined the overall value of the performance marketing space, which comprises more than 200,000 businesses and individuals.

The cooperation of all the major networks in such research was unprecedented. This first of its kind study commissioned by the PMA, clearly shows the major foothold of performance marketing as a trusted, proven and highly-valued channel for businesses.

"Compiling these results required an unprecedented level of cooperation across the industry,“ Rachel Honoway, PMA Board of Directors President, says. “With a fair amount of trust and a common goal, our members came together to produce the one thing that this industry has lacked for decades: a concretely stated value."

Key findings include:

  • ROAS by Advertiser sectors including retail, automotive, clothing & accessories, consumer electronics, and consumer goods
  • ROAS by Retail sub-sector
  • Ad spend by affiliate type

The PMA report also identifies several trends including:

  • Influencers
  • Incrementality
  • Mobile

To view the full report go to
To join the PMA go to

About the PMA
The Performance Marketing Association (PMA) is a non-profit trade association founded in 2008. It is the only trade association representing the performance marketing industry. The PMA’s mission is to champion and protect accountable performance marketing. Its main goals are to promote the growth of the industry, to help model standards and best practices, and to advocate on behalf of the businesses that comprise the performance marketing industry The PMA strives to raise the profile of performance marketing by demonstrating the value of this multi-billion marketing channel, which comprises more than 200,000 businesses and individuals. With the PMA leading the charge, businesses will continue to grow and succeed, the quality of work will be demonstrated, and further quality participation in the performance marketing field encouraged.

About PwC US
With approximately 1,200 practitioners serving TMT clients in the United States, PwC is deeply committed to providing clients with industry experience and resources. In recent years, its pioneering work in TMT has included developing strategies to leverage digital technology, identifying new sources of financing, and marketplace positioning in industries characterized by consolidation and transformation. PwC’s experience reaches across all geographies and segments of the TMT sector, including broadband, wireless, the internet, music, film, television, publishing, advertising, gaming, theme parks, computers and networking, and software. With thousands of practitioners around the world, we're always close at hand to provide deep industry knowledge and resources.

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Tricia Meyer
since: 01/2009
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