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Traditional channels still influence

News, 23 May 2016

NEW YORK: Although retailers are advised to use as many channels as possible, traditional media channels still reach more consumers than digital and email, according to a new survey.

Advertising technology firm Fluent polled more than 1,800 US consumers for its "The Omnichannel Advantage" report and found that around 40% of them recalled seeing TV, print or online ads from their favourite retailer over the previous month.

That compared with about a third (30%) who reported having seen mobile alerts, email newsletters, mobile shopping apps, Facebook posts or videos from their favourite retailer over the same period. Engagement levels were even lower for Instagram (20%) and Twitter (14%).

"Traditional channels remain important because they still exist and they are ubiquitous and continue to enjoy massive audience reach," said Fluent CMO Jordan Cohen, in comments reported by Luxury Daily.

"Digital may be growing faster, but it is mostly additive in terms of how marketers can reach consumers," he added.

However, while traditional channels maintained their lead in terms of consumer recall, the report also showed that an omnichannel approach can be highly effective.

For example, 78% of respondents who received emails from their favourite retailers while following them on Twitter said they go on to make purchases at least once a week.

So, even though it appears Twitter on its own delivers low engagement levels, when combined with email newsletters it helps to drive purchase intent more than any other digital channel.

This was reinforced by the finding that the purchase rate stemming from email combined with Instagram stood at 68%, while Facebook scored 58%, followed by watched video (56%).

But another key survey finding was that consumers who connected across multiple channels tended to make more frequent purchases.

Almost two-thirds (62%) of respondents who engaged with their favourite retailer across 10 or more channels reported making in-store purchases from them once a week or more, and that number dropped to 41% among those who were reached by fewer than 10 channels.

"So, the key advantage of connecting with consumers across as many channels as possible is that it works," Cohen said. "They are more engaged and have a higher purchase frequency."

Data sourced from Fluent, Luxury Daily; additional content by Warc staff