Survey Says: Familiarity, Ease-of-use, and Cost Trump “Cool” for Marketers

by | Jun 8, 2011 | Blog, Blog Archive, Distributed Marketing, Industry News, Multi-Channel Marketing | 0 comments

Familiarity, ease-of-use, and cost trump “cool” when marketers decide which communications channel to use.  That’s the take-away from a recent survey which looks at some of the factors that weigh into a marketer’s decision on which communications channel to use.

Pity the poor marketer who has to decide how to make the best use of time, money, and resources.  The number of communications channels available to marketers has skyrocketed over the last 20 years, from about 10 in 1990 to more than 25 today. A newly minted marketing MBA in 1990 would have been familiar with these marketing channels.

  1. Newspapers
  2. Magazines
  3. Collateral
  4. PR
  5. Broadcast TV
  6. Cable TV
  7. Radio
  8. Billboards
  9. Events
  10. Email

The class of 2011 has to be familiar with all of these marketing channels:

  1. Newspapers
  2. Magazines
  3. Broadcast TV
  4. Cable TV
  5. Satellite TV
  6. Radio
  7. Satellite radio
  8. Billboards
  9. Events
  10. Webinars
  11. PR
  12. Email
  13. Internet banners
  14. PPC /Google Ad Words
  15. Streaming video
  16. Video (YouTube or other online video)
  17. SEO/SEM
  18. Collateral & downloadable assets (White Papers, eBooks)
  19. Mobile Internet
  20. Video games
  21. Podcasts
  22. Short message service (SMS /text)
  23. Instant messaging (IM)
  24. Social media
  25. Blogs
  26. QR Codes

Few marketers have the luxury of using every channel, so how does a marketer select the right channel for a particular message and market segment? In an article in eMarketer this week, a Pitney Bowes survey provided a partial answer. According to a May, 2011 survey, ease of use, cost-effectiveness, and the marketer’s comfort and knowledge in using a particular channel are the top 3 reasons to select a particular tactic.

No one doubts the “cool” factor for hot marketing channels like QR codes, social media, and mobile marketing.  But the new survey shows that only a handful feel comfortable with the newer tools — for now.  Just 13% of the respondents in the Pitney Bowes survey ranked themselves “familiar and comfortable” with QR codes, for instance — and slightly less than 20% rated themselves “familiar and comfortable” with social media and mobile marketing. 

Here’s a breakdown on the survey.

Do you agree with the data from the survey? Are you using these tools – and if you are, do your reasons match up with the survey responses?  It will be interesting to look back in a year to see how these ratings have changed as marketers become more familiar and comfortable with new communications channels.