Some Spam Isn't, According to Your Perception

Some Spam Isn't, According to Your Perception

A recent study conducted by Harris Interactive for Digital Impact notes that even though 59% of the US online population understands the difference between legitimate e-mail marketing and "spam" or unsolicited commercial e-mail (UCE), 16% still say that they do not differentiate between the two.

What Internet Users Say About Spam vs. eMail Marketing (% of responses, September, 2002)

  • Email marketing is for product/service specifically requested; spam is sent without asking for it. - 59%
  • There is no difference between email marketing and spam - 16%
  • Email marketing is from companies previously dealt with; spam is from companies never dealt with - 11%
  • Email marketing is email I like; spam is email I don't like - 8%
  • Email is from companies I know; spam is from companies I don't know - 6%

    Source: Harris Interactive, September, 2002

    Though the results are weighted to represent the online population in the US, respondents were Harris online suvey panel members, and may therefore be more likely to receive e-mail marketing than the average internet user. Nonetheless, it is interesting to note that 71% of respondents have made purchases as a result of e-mail marketing they received. Still, only 7% say they do so as often as once a month.

    Frequency by Which US Internet Users Make Purchases Based on eMail Marketing (% of respondents 23 July to 7 August, 2002)

  • Once a month - 7%
  • More than once a year, but less than once a month - 42%
  • Less than once a year - 22%
  • Never - 29%

    Source: Harris Interactive, September, 2002

    A December 2001 report from RoperASW determined that most recipients of spam delete the e-mail message, but a sizeable number say they report the sender of the message.

    Actions US Internet Users Take in Response to Unsolicited email (2001 % of respondents)

  • Deleted email - 94%
  • Asked to be taken off list - 72%
  • Visited new website - 39%
  • Reported sender - 35%
  • Subscriber to newsletter - 21%
  • Forwarded email - 21%
  • Sent to (their company's) tech people - 14%
  • Purchased product/service - 11%
  • Signed a petition - 11%
  • Blocked sender - 2%

    Source: RoperASW, Burson-Marsteller, Dec 2001

    According to Brightmail, the number of spam attacks in the US alone is estimated to have grown from roughly 2 million in Q1 2001, to about 13.9 million in Q2 2002.

    Find out more here.

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