Merkle Publishes "View from the Digital Inbox" Whitepaper

Feb 2011
Columbia, MD - 

Merkle (, the nation's fastest growing customer relationship marketing (CRM) agency,today published a new whitepaper entitled "View from the Digital Inbox 2011", with insights from Merkle's ninth annual consumer attitudes and usage study. The research is based on a survey of 3,535 U.S. online adults 18 and over regarding e-mail, mobile phone and social networking use. The results of the survey, which was conducted during the Fall of 2010, illustrate the rapid growth in consumer adoption of digital media, and their subsequent integration through mobile technology.

The findings from "View from the Digital Inbox 2011" have significant implications for digital marketers, as they attempt to navigate a crowded media landscape. Highlights of the report include:

  • Of those with an Internet-enabled mobile phone, 55% use it to check their personal e-mail account, up to 44% the prior year.
  • E-mail is the preferred method of commercial communication of 74% of all online adults and is preferred over direct mail by a margin of nearly five to one. There are relatively small differences by age, unlike the very large age differences that exist for preferred personal communication channel.
  • The potential for social targeting is high, as 73% of Facebook users have become a fan of at least one company or brand. On average, Facebook users are fans of 12 companies or brands, with a median number of four. The primary reason social networkers became fans of companies of brands on Facebook is a genuine like of the brand (34%), followed by access to exclusive deals and offers (24%).

"The rate of digital convergence of online activities is being accelerated by mobile technology and adoption. Mobile devices now make it easy to communicate in multiple ways, and engage in activities that were recently only in the domain of the PC," said Lori Connolly, Merkle's Director of Research and Analytics. "This is causing the lines of digital media to blur. E-mail and websites must render properly on mobile devices, and have socially integrated elements. It's no longer about these separate, distinct marketing channels, but about the consumer experience as a whole, and smartphones have become tools to augment that experience." 

About Merkle

Merkle is a global data-driven, technology-enabled performance marketing agency and the largest independent agency in the US for CRM, digital, and search. For more than 25 years, Fortune 1000 companies and leading nonprofit organizations have partnered with Merkle to maximize the value of their customer portfolios. The agency’s heritage in data, technology, and analytics forms the foundation for its unmatched skills in understanding consumer insights. When combined with its strength in performance media, Merkle creates customer experiences that drive improved marketing performance and shareholder value. With more than 3,400 employees, the privately held corporation is headquartered in Columbia, Maryland with 15 additional offices in the US and offices in Barcelona, Bristol, London, Shanghai, and Nanjing. For more information, contact Merkle at 1-877-9-Merkle or visit