e-Dialog’s Independent Research Shows E-mail a Significant Driver of Multichannel Activity

BURLINGTON, Mass.—E-mail’s influence on offline sales, brand advocacy and discovery is even higher than expected according to the latest research from e-Dialog, a proven provider of advanced e-mail and multichannel marketing solutions within the GSI Commerce (Nasdaq: GSIC) Marketing Services division.

The Global E-mail Attitudes Survey of 13,000 consumers in 13 countries across the Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific reveals that e-mail’s influence over multichannel purchasing is powerful, with the majority of consumers (58%) having been driven to make a purchase in a store or over the phone by a marketing e-mail. And while Websites are the preferred place for consumers to opt-in, they are also very willing to subscribe to e-mail messages offline, for example when placing a catalog order (46%), at the point-of-sale (29%), or via SMS text message (13%).

In addition, two-thirds of consumers indicated that e-mail inspired purchases have prompted them to further research a brand and its products while more than half say it spurred a peer recommendation. Moreover, roughly half of consumers revealed they are willing to act as brand advocates in order to connect e-mail content, such as special offers and promotions, to social networks. This activity is highest in Asia-Pacific where the number of consumers indicating such behavior exceeds the global norm.

While regional differences exist in these findings, the research clearly demonstrates a global opportunity for companies to maximize their marketing investments by connecting e-mail to various digital and offline communication and commerce opportunities.

“This research confirms our long-standing belief that organizations need to align themselves and their databases to work cross-functionally in order to connect marketing initiatives,” commented Simone Barratt, managing director, e-Dialog International. “There is a tremendous opportunity for brands to strategically connect e-mail marketing to in-store, social networking and mobile channels to drive revenue, acquire new subscribers and importantly, connect the dots for cross-channel measurement and attribution. But one must not forget to take differences across borders into account so as to optimize relevance and effectiveness in every channel.”

While still somewhat nascent, the research also shows that the mobile channel presents new opportunities for marketers. Sixty-eight percent of surveyed consumers use their mobile devices to triage their personal e-mail while doing something else on their desktop PCs. Additionally, an increasing number of consumers across regions are purchasing products and services based on promotional SMS messages. However, the cultural differences are strong with 57 percent of Asia-Pacific, 21 percent of European, and 14 percent of U.S. consumers having done so.

“While Asia-Pacific consumers tend to be more sophisticated across mobile and social channels than other regions, the value of an e-mail address and its ability to drive cross-channel customer conversations that ultimately turn into conversions cannot be discounted,” said Darren Fifield, managing director, e-Dialog Asia-Pacific. “E-mail is a permanent, and very influential, fixture in the consumer’s life and there are abundant opportunities to continue using it globally to improve long-term customer loyalty through data-driven, cross-channel coordination.”

Available for download now at http://www.e-dialog.com/globalresearch, the comprehensive report, Global Perspectives: A Study of Global Consumer Attitudes to Digital Marketing, includes detailed findings from the survey as well as important recommendations for global marketers. The survey consisted of nationally representative interviews with 13,000 consumers across 13 countries, including the U.S., U.K., Germany, Netherlands, France, Spain, Sweden, Italy, Japan, Singapore, Australia, South Korea and China. It was conducted on behalf of e-Dialog’s Centre for Digital Marketing Excellence by Lightspeed Research in April 2010. Analysis was carried out in conjunction with industry analysts from The Relevancy Group and Intelligent Insights.

About e-Dialog

Established in 1997, e-Dialog empowers marketers to meaningfully connect with customers by engaging in relevant conversations through e-mail, mobile devices, social networks, e-commerce and at the point of sale. e-Dialog’s multichannel suite gives marketers direct access to timely customer insight that drives targeted and opportunity-rich consumer dialogs. With e-Dialog, marketers quickly evolve customer relationships from the newly acquired to the highly engaged.

Consistently recognized by top analyst firms for both outstanding service and first-class technology, e-Dialog is a global provider to some of the world’s most recognized brands, including AirTran Airways, Avis Budget Group, Boots, British Airways, CVS/pharmacy, Nintendo, the NFL, PETCO, Reuters, the Royal Bank of Scotland group of companies, and The TJX Companies. With offices in Boston, London, New York, Seattle and Singapore.

e-Dialog is a wholly owned subsidiary of GSI Commerce Inc. For more information, visit http://www.e-dialog.com

e-Dialog Media Contacts:
Jean Borgman, 508-451-5944

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