AMA: COVID Killed Consumer 'Techlash'

The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated consumer acceptance of marketing technology, according to findings of a just-released study by the American Marketing Association (AMA).

The study -- part of a new AMA report ("Did Covid Kill The Techlash") -- is based on surveys among American consumers and marketers conducted in 2019 and 2021 by Charney Research and Toluna, and shows a marked uptick in acceptance of marketing technology as a way to improve consumer shopping and brand experiences, making them easier, quicker, more fun and more informative to a greater percentage of people.

While the AMA concludes that a so-called "techlash" -- a backlash to marketing technologies perceived to compromise consumer privacy -- persists, the study shows that consumer perceptions have eased significantly over the past two years.

The findings show "that widespread use of new marketing technology and associated worry about its privacy implications are two sides of the same coin," AMA New York President Jason Revzon said in a statement, adding: "Companies need to use this technology, but they also need to be genuinely responsive to customer concerns about it.”'

While the study did not show a shift in consumer vs. marketing perceptions over time, it does find that there are some marked differences in their current views about consumer consent and how their personal data is used to power marketing technologies.
Surprisingly, it shows greater percentages of marketers believe consumer consent is needed for many categories than among consumers surveyed (see below).



Source: American Marketing Association. Base = 506 U.S. consumers and 411 U.S. marketers surveyed in August.

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