Commentary

Consumers Willing to Trade Off Privacy for Electronic Personalization

Consumers Willing to Trade Off Privacy for Electronic Personalization

According to The 2006 ChoiceStream Personalization Survey, the number of consumers willing to provide demographic information in exchange for a personalized online experience has grown dramatically over the past year, increasing 24 percent to a total of 57 percent of all respondents.

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The survey also finds that the number of consumers willing to allow Web sites to track their clicks and purchases increased 34 percent from the previous year. And the results show no significant decline in the number of consumers concerned about the security of their personal data online, with 62 percent expressing concern in 2006 vs. 63 percent in 2005.

Esther Dyson, an advisor to ChoiceStream, says "Consumers are... increasingly willing to let vendors know more about them in exchange for the convenience and relevance of personalization... For this model to work, it's critical that the vendors make it clear what's going on, so that the personalization feels friendly..."

Of the 30 percent of respondents indicating membership in a social network, 75 percent, indicated that personalization would improve their social networking experience by introducing them to members who share their tastes and interests.

The Survey reports that interest in personalization is spreading to consumers' television and mobile screens:

  • 45 percent of survey respondents are dissatisfied with their current onscreen TV program guide because it takes too long to find programming of interest.
  • 47 percent expressed interest in receiving a personalized guide to help them find shows and movies that match their tastes and interests
  • 62 percent of all 18-24 year-olds expressed interest in personalization
  • 37 percent of 50+ year-olds expressed interest
  • 40 percent indicated that they would watch more VOD/PPV if it were easier to find programming and movies that matched [their] tastes and interests.
  • Almost 50 percent of Survey respondents indicated that they would be more likely to download ringtones, music or other content to their mobile devices if they were presented with choices based on their tastes and preferences.

Steve Johnson, CEO of ChoiceStream, said "... It's no longer enough for devices to simply provide consumers with access to content. They have to offer guidance to help... find the right content for them..."

Additional Survey results from ChoiceStream may be accessed through this link.

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