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Consumers still loyal to their email accounts, says DMA

Consumers still loyal to their email accounts, says DMA

Email continues to be a reliable method of communication, according to research by the Direct Marketing Association. Almost all consumers check their personal email every day, and nearly as many are still using their very first email address.

The latest edition of the Consumer email tracker 2017 report from the DMA reveals that:

  • 99% of consumers check their personal email every day, checking their inboxes around 20 times a day.
  • 83% still using their ‘first ever’ email address as their main account
  • 59% say they have never deactivated an email address

Of course, consumers have developed tactics for dealing with email volumes, especially from commercial organisations.

  • consumers have on average two or three email accounts
  • 44% of consumers have a specific email address to receive marketing messages

Email volumes

The consumers surveyed by the DMA:

  • believe they are signed-up to an average of 14 mailing lists on their personal accounts
  • use their work accounts to sign-up for just two of these. 
  • believe more than half of the emails in their inbox are marketing messages

The DMA found that consumers feel they receive too much irrelevant content from brands via email:

  • 53% of consumers feel they receive too many irrelevant emails from brands
  • 1 in 5 people say they’ve abandoned an email address due to receiving too many emails.

What drives trust in emails?

What can marketers do to convince consumers and donors that they are handling their data responsibly? According to the DMA’s research:

  • 37% look for access to a preference centre for updating/removing their details
  • 37% look for clear privacy policies

In addition, the DMA report that “consumers are also more likely to read concise emails”. 

Rachel Aldighieri, MD at the DMA, says: “Engagement is driven by relevant, short and actionable emails… We know, for instance, consumers are engaging well with simple emails composed of well-written text and images. The power of the craft of copywriting should not be underestimated.”

You can read the DMA’s Consumer Email Tracker report 2017 although free registration is required. 


Infographic: the email account

DMA Consumer email tracker 2017 - infographic



Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world's first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of Research massive growth in giving.

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