CRMindustry.com Blog reports that Habeas Inc. released its 2008 report on consumer attitudes towards e-mail and online interactions with businesses. Just when you thought it was time to drop e-mail and run towards Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace, the report says that e-mail will still be the primary means of communication between consumers and businesses.
I’ve got a problem with this report, at least based on the way this blog presents it. For example, one conclusion is:
–Sixty-five percent of the demographic between the ages of 18 to 34, the age demographic most comfortable with IM, SMS and emerging communications methods, will favor email to communicate with businesses in five years.
First, what if they’re wrong?
Second, if they’re right, that means that 35% will favor other means. That’s a lot of people.
Third, if your prospective customers are primarily using social media to communicate with each other, then you’re going to need to have a presence there. At SXSW a teen panel told the audience that the only time they used e-mail was when they needed to communicate with grown ups or to register for Web sites.
My take: E-mail is going to lose market share to social media, but it will still remain important to a great number of people, perhaps even a majority. Businesses wanting to build effective relationships with their customers will need to continue to use e-mail but will also need to become familiar with the various types of social media.
If you become versed in using Facebook, Twitter, etc. and your competitors don’t, you’ll have an edge on them.
If you don’t become versed in how to use social media, your competitors will have an edge on you.