GLEN J. NOWAK is an associate professor in the College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia. He has a PhD and an MA from the University of Wisconsin. His research interests include direct response TV advertising, the impact of direct marketing on consumers' privacy, and advertising effects on consumer behavior. JOSEPH E. PHELPS is an assistant professor in the Advertising and Public Relations Department at the University of Alabama. He has a PhD and an MA from the University of Wisconsin. His research interests include consumer perceptions of direct marketing and privacy issues, children's responses to TV advertising, and examining the implications of integrated marketing communications on current marketing practices, theory, and research.
Direct marketing and the use of individual-level consumer information: Determining how and when “privacy” matters
Version of Record online: 29 AUG 2006
Copyright © 1995 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. and Direct Marketing Educational Foundation, Inc.
Journal of Direct Marketing
Volume 9, Issue 3, pages 46–60, Summer 1995
How to Cite
Nowak, G. J. and Phelps, J. (1995), Direct marketing and the use of individual-level consumer information: Determining how and when “privacy” matters. J. Direct Mark., 9: 46–60. doi: 10.1002/dir.4000090307
- Issue online: 29 AUG 2006
- Version of Record online: 29 AUG 2006
The desire to maximize marketing effectiveness and reduce communication costs has increased direct marketers' reliance on computerized databases, customized persuasion, and other consumer information intensive strategies and tactics (28,54). The belief that the success of marketing efforts is positively related to the amount and specificity of individual-level consumer information (7), however, has raised questions about how far companies should be allowed to go in learning about or attempting to persuade consumers (6,40). In the process, privacy has become widely evoked, but often elusive concept. This article develops a framework for addressing privacy concerns that arise when direct marketers utilize consumer information. It does so by identifying the underlying dimensions of the privacy construct and examining the relationships between those dimensions and direct marketers' consumer information practices. This approach not only helps identify situations when privacy matters, but suggests productive strategies and tactics for alleviating consumer concerns related to the use of individual-level consumer information.