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BizReport : Email Marketing : June 25, 2010

What motivates consumers to disclose their email address?

The second research brief in ExactTarget's "Subscribers, Fans and Followers" research series has been released. Called "Email X-Factor", the study investigates consumers' motivations for engaging with companies through email.

by Helen Leggatt

exacttarget logo.jpgIt's not the newest communications channel around but it is, by far, the most subscribed-to and familiar among consumers. Email is part of almost every online person's life.

In fact, over 93% of online consumers subscribe to email and have given their email address to at least one company or brand.

According to ExactTarget's latest research brief (.pdf), 88% of U.S. consumers check their email daily and 94% use it at least once a week.

But what motivates a consumer to give out their email address? Here's what ExactTarget discovered (respondents selected all that replied):

67% gave out email to receive discounts and promotions
55% gave out email in return for a freebie
50% gave out email to be informed of upcoming sales
45% gave out email to be updated on upcoming products
33% gave out email to gain access to exclusive content
29% were motivated by the promise of fun and entertainment
28% wanted to receive more information on products and services
28% said "to keep informed"
22% wanted to stay abreast of topics the business specialized in
17% gave out their email on a recommendation
14% want to interact with the sender
11% subscribe to show their support

So, despite the onslaught of social media and mobile, email remains a valuable channel via which to communicate with consumers, particularly when promoting sales, new products or giveaways.

"This research provides new insight into why consumers of all ages are increasingly turning to email to interact with companies amid the explosive growth of social media," said Peter McCormick, ExactTarget Global's general manager.

"Consumers identified several X-factors that keep them engaging with companies through email, including privacy, their ability to receive exclusive and targeted content and the ability to respond at their leisure."

ExactTarget's first brief in the research series, "Digital Morning", delves into consumers' online behavior first thing in the morning, claiming it reveals their primary motivation for logging on.

Tags: email marketing, email subscription, social media

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