Data Privacy Hassle: What Shoppers Like - And Dislike - About AI Use By Brands

There have numerous surveys asking consumers what they think of AI. What bothers them about it? 

Data privacy is their top concern, according to Consumer Perspectives On AI-Driven Brand Marketing, a new study by Optimove. Yet most have at least somewhat positive feelings about use of the technology in marketing.  

Of those polled, 55% have positive feelings, with 26% greatly approving of AI’s impact in tailored messaging. 

But they list these concerns about use of AI: 

  • Data privacy: I’m concerned about how my data is used and stored — 34%
  • Over-personalization: I don’t want to feel like every ad is watching me — 19% 
  • Losing the human touch: I prefer interaction with real people — 18%        
  • Inaccuracy: I’ve received irrelevant or wrong recommendations — 14% 
  • None: I have no concerns about brands using AI — 15%



Most consumers rate themselves as fairly savvy: 63% say they can tell if a company is marketing to them using AI, while the remaining 37% can’t. 

But email teams should heed the results about personalization: there seem to be some doubts. Consumers share these attitudes about personalization and AI: 

  • Very positive: It enhances my shopping experience — 27% 
  • Somewhat positive: It can be helpful, but it doesn’t always get it right — 24% 
  • Neutral: I don’t have strong feelings either way — 25%
  • Somewhat negative: It feels intrusive or not always relevant — 13%
  • Very negative: I prefer brands not to use AI in their marketing to me — 11%

Skeptics may question these results on several grounds. For one, how experienced are consumers at purchasing based on AI recommendations? 

Of those polled, 25% have done so many times, with AI often getting it right. Another 21% have done so a few times and say the recommendations are spot on.  

But 14% say they don’t trust or act on AI-generated recommendations, and 6% say they have not done this, although the suggestions have been interesting. And 34% were not aware when the message was AI-generated.  

Do people trust brands that use AI in general? They say they:

  • Strongly trust: I believe it can provide better recommendations and improves my experience — 27%
  • Trust to some extent: It can be good, but it depends on how the brand uses it — 22%
  • Neutral: It doesn’t affect my trust in a brand — 28% 
  • Trust less: I’m skeptical about brands using AI in marketing — 13%
  • Strongly distrust: I’m wary of any brand that uses AI for marketing — 10%

Optimove surveyed 305 U.S. consumers in November 2023. Of the respondents, 51% were female and 49% male. 




1 comment about "Data Privacy Hassle: What Shoppers Like - And Dislike - About AI Use By Brands".
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  1. Jonathan May from HorseTV Global, December 4, 2023 at 5:31 p.m.

    Would love to know the age bracket of the 27% who said they "Strongly Trust" AI.  Probably don't have their Driver's License yet.

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