Remote controls, TiVo, the Internet -- all of these technologies have helped consumers gain better control -- actually, total control -- over what information they receive. Don't want to sit through a commercial? Click! Want to jump to a different part of the program? Click! Need to find the best price for a product? Click, click, and click some more through the Web. These technologies that have offered consumers so much in the way of convenience are actually posing quite a challenge for marketers, as Paul Soltoff notes in today's ClickZ column "Just Who's in Control Here?" To drive his point home, Soltoff cites some stats from Forrester Research:
* 60 million households have signed up for the national Do-Not-Call Registry
* 54 million have spam blockers
* 20% have advertising blockers
* PVR households (think TiVo) skip 59% of commercials
Yikes! How is a company to get its message across if no one wants to listen?
Soltoff says, "There's no better way to stay ahead of the curve than to go where consumers are going." Give consumers more anonymity and control and they'll reward you with business. For e-mail marketers, make it very clear that consumers can opt out of receiving your messages and, on Websites, set up preference centers that help personalize your customers' visits. Have any ideas you'd like to share?