Two-fifths of consumers (41%) say they are more comfortable and confident that brands are handling their data correctly thanks to the introduction of GDPR, while fewer people find themselves questioning how a brand got their data than they did before the regulation came into force.
So says the DMA ‘Consumer email tracker 2019’, backed by dotdigital, which looks into into consumers’ perceptions and preferences of email.
In 2018, consumers believe they have more control over the marketing emails they receive, estimating this at around 57 per week to their personal inboxes – down from 73 in 2017 – and less than half of these (44%) are actually from brands.
In addition, consumers estimate they are signed up to receive email messages from around nine different brands, which has also declined from 12 in 2017.
DMA managing director Rachel Aldighieri said: “The fact that so many of the people we surveyed said the new rules have made them more confident about how brands treat their personal data should be seen as a very positive step.
“This year’s report highlights the power of email to be at the heart of brands’ communication with customers, being the central channel that others can then be built around. However, it’s fundamental that marketers combine convenience and relevance, building relationships based on transparency and trust.”
When it comes to unsubscribing from email marketing, most cited the fact that they get too many messages (59%), followed by the information no longer being relevant (43%) and not recognising the brand (43%).
Most people (70%) take action via the brand’s website or the button within an email, with 40% expecting to never hear from that brand (via email) again or only receive transactional emails (23%).
However, almost one in five expect to be taken to options where they can change their email preferences (9%) or to some form of survey (7%), offering marketers the opportunity to retain that customer by changing their approach or, at the very least, better understand why they are leaving.
When offered this opportunity for control, around a third (36%) say they would like to reduce the frequency of emails they receive or specify the products/services they hear about (31%) – two of the key reasons they may have clicked unsubscribe in the first place.
Marcus Gearey, chair of the DMA Email Council’s research hub and analytics manager at Zeta Global, said: “The management of the inbox is an attempt to maximise utility and minimise disruption. The right message of the right value still wins: too many of the wrong one makes it difficult to get that consumer to change their mind that your brand belongs in their spam folder rather than their inbox.”
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