Consumers Want to Hear From Retailers; Knowing When Is the Key

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More than 80% of Americans want to receive ads from retailers and e-tailers; though only 57% say they want to hear from them when there is a sale or promotion.


Almost all consumers want to hear from retailers and e-commerce companies. However, not all consumers agree on when they want to hear from them.

According to a recent survey from Emarsys, 81% of Americans want to receive advertisements from retailers and e-tailers; but only 57% say they want to hear from them when there's a sale or promotion. Slightly fewer, 47%, say they want to hear from commerce companies when something they've been perusing drops in price. Other times Americans wish to hear from e-tailers and retailers:

  1. When something they've been looking at is close to selling out (26%)
  2. When a holiday is approaching (25%)
  3. After visiting a company's website/social media page/store (23%)
  4. When they're at home (17%)
  5. When they're shopping in or close to their store (16%)
  6. When a loved one's birthday is coming up (12%)
  7. After visiting a competitor's store/website (10%)
  8. When at work (3%)

“This latest round of research confirms what we've known for years: that a vast majority of Americans want to receive advertisements from retailers and e-commerce companies," Emarsys CMO Tomas Puig, said in a statement about the study, "they just want the right message at the right time.”

Even though the lion's share of Americans welcome ads, the survey shows that 81% say they'd likely take steps to prevent unwanted email from retailers and e-tailers; for example, 65% say they'd unsubscribe immediately from all company communications. Other actions taken by respondents include:

  • Contact customer service (18%)
  • Shop at a competitor instead (14%)
  • Complain to their family and friends (13%)
  • Blacklist the brand and never shop there again (11%)
  • Rant on social media to their followers (6%)
  • Post/tweet directly to the retailer to complain (6%)

The survey—which polled 2,120 online adults—also reveals that the channel via which companies interact with consumers matters greatly. Almost half (48%) of respondents say that TV ads are most effective in persuading them to buy a product. Print ads (38%) ranked second, email (35%) third, social media (22%) is next, then radio (15%), mobile (12%), Internet banner ads (9%), and SMS/text messages (7%).

In addition to gauging perspectives on marketing and advertising, the survey also asked respondents which presidential candidate they think is doing the best marketing job. Donald Trump (37%), apparently, is conducting the best marketing campaign among the candidates; trailing him is Bernie Sanders (21%) and Hillary Clinton (20%). Eighteen percent of Americans think that Ben Carson is conducting the best marketing campaign, while 11% say Ted Cruz is the top candidate when it comes to marketing themselves.

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