Marketers are not typical consumers: They're more likely than other online consumers to explore new digital environments, own a smartphone, and use various digital media frequently. Consequently, marketers can lose touch with the people they're trying to reach, according to a study by ExactTarget.
Below, additional findings from ExactTarget's new "Subscribers, Fans, and Followers" study titled "Marketers From Mars," which polled online consumers and marketers about their use of digital media.
Basic Online Behaviors
In its report, ExactTarget defines three segments of digital users in the US:
- Subscribers: Online consumers who receive at least one permission-based email a day.
- Fans: Online consumers with an active Facebook account who have become a fan (i.e., "liked") at least one company or brand on Facebook.
- Followers: Online consumers with an active Twitter profile who "follow" at least one company or brand on Twitter.
Marketers are over-represented in all three digital user segments. However, that finding is most pronounced in the Followers segment, where marketers are overrepresented by a 5:1 ratio:
- Subscribers: 98% of marketers are email subscribers, compared with 93% of online consumers.
- Fans: 86% of marketers are Facebook fans, compared with 58% of online consumers.
- Followers: 61% of marketers are Twitter Followers, compared with 12% of online consumers.
Similarly, 90% of marketers own a smartphone, compared with only 51% of online consumers.
Not surprisingly, those 51% of smartphone-owning consumers tend to behave more like marketers than consumers without smartphones. They are more likely than consumers without smartphones to use technologies such as email, mobile apps, and social media. Also, smartphone-owning consumers tend to share more content and purchase more products online than consumers who don't own smartphones.