Revisiting the theory of business-to-business advertising

Roberto Mora Cortez*, David I. Gilliland, Wesley J. Johnston

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Creating effective business-to-business (B2B) communications is an increasingly complex challenge for marketing managers. It requires a theoretical understanding of a number of puzzling, interacting components of an advertising stimulus. However, few academicians have pursued the goal of integrating and modeling how the B2B advertising process should be conceptualized. Gilliland and Johnston (1997) provided the first comprehensive model of the process, but B2B advertising has changed dramatically since this paper and demands an update to capture the new dimensions of the phenomenon. Using a systematic literature review to summarize recent trends, this paper incorporates the key changes in B2B advertising over the last 20 years. In particular, the authors explore a revised model of B2B effects, including (1) social media, (2) creativity and emotional appeals, (3) national culture, (4) brand equity and credibility, (5) ad experience social context, and (6) competing messages.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)642-656
Number of pages15
JournalIndustrial Marketing Management
Early online date30 Apr 2019
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2020

Bibliographical note

© 2019, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International


  • Advertising
  • Business-to-business communications
  • Creativity
  • National culture
  • Social media


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