E-mail marketing; the effects of generic vs. personalized promotional e-mails on receivers

Hemersma, J.A. (2013) E-mail marketing; the effects of generic vs. personalized promotional e-mails on receivers.

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Abstract: The focus of this study is personalization in e-mail marketing, concentrating on three types of personalization; personalization on content, personalization on name and personalization on name and content. Different possible effects of personalization where measured: trust, loyalty, perceived image of the organization, intention to buy, privacy concerns, perceived quality of the message, intention to remain subscribed, retention of the message and recall of the message. This study is important because the preference of marketers for e-mail marketing is growing, but there is little known about the influence of generic versus personalized e-mails on receivers. Research on the effects of personalized promotional e-mails is not only limited, but also shows different results. Some sources claim personalization to be effective, others showed resistance to highly personalized messages. For this study four different kinds of e-mails where designed: one personalized on content, one personalized on name, one personalized on name and content and a generic e-mail. The e-mails where sent out to the customer base of a large Dutch webshop. In each e-mail an invitation to fill out a survey was included. The findings from this study provide evidence that personalization has notable influence on the selected constructs. ANOVA´s showed significant differences between the forms of personalization in the constructs trust, perceived image of the organization, intention to buy, perceived quality of message and intention to remain subscribed. But also indirect effects are found by the multiple regression. The main conclusion drawn from this study is that personalization on content is the best form of personalization for organizations, which want to apply personalization in their promotional e-mails. Another conclusion is that it does not matter whether organizations send out a generic e-mail or an e-mail personalized on name, because there are no significant differences. A recommendation for future research is that participants in the different conditions of personalization need to be randomly selected in each condition, so that the limitations of this study can be reduced.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:05 communication studies
Programme:Communication Studies MSc (60713)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/63793
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