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Coping With Spam

  |  October 23, 2007   |  Comments

A study finds consumers maintain multiple e-mail addresses, using at least one for trusted sources. What does this mean for marketers?

To learn more about consumer perceptions of e-mail, Habeas sponsored a study conducted by Ipsos and discovered an "e-mail insecurity factor" among Internet users due to spam and online security threats.

Seventy-four percent of survey respondents check their e-mail daily and 22 percent check three -to-six days per week. Across all age, gender, education and other demographic groups, 58 percent believe spam has increased, 36 percent say it's about the same, and 6 percent see less spam.

Over half of the survey respondents said they filter their own e-mail by maintaining multiple e-mail addresses.

"Over 50 percent said they give one e-mail address to people they trust, and another to people they don't trust," Des Cahill, CEO of Habeas. The company describes this behavior as an "e-mail insecurity factor."

Cahill said the study didn't observe whether one e-mail address is used for friends and family, while another one is specifically for marketing e-mail and newsletters. "The bucketizing is more about this e-mail box is for people I trust more," he said. "I would say that a marketer, if they do their e-mailing right, could be put into the trusted box."

E-mail is a crucial component of communications, and 61 percent said they would never give up e-mail regardless of spam, phishing, and virus risk.

Ipsos conducted the research for Habeaus. The study polled 2,347 Internet users based on age, gender, income, household size, education, and region representative of the U.S. population. The survey was fielded in September 2007 and included incentives.

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Enid Burns

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