Concerns over the overall cost of marketing research and the cost per usable response have in large measure caused marketing practitioners to turn to online marketing research techniques, either as a solus technique, or in a mixed mode application. However, the use of e-mail and mixed mode surveys such as postal invitations to complete online questionnaires present both familiar and new issues, as the extant literature illustrates. This paper examines an earlier study before reporting findings from the present study, which employs a method that ascertains the probability of commissioning and/or responding to four survey research methods, described in scenarios and delivered using e-mail and the World Wide Web (Web). It is evident that while perceptions of e-mail, the Internet, and privacy have changed since early use of the Internet and more particularly the World Wide Web, and there is acknowledgment in the literature concerning the lower costs and faster response speeds of online marketing research, small businesses do appear to discriminate in favour of targeted online survey methods over postal surveys, portrayed as scenarios in this study. They indicate a greater likelihood of responding to targeted, hybrid email/Web surveys than traditional postal surveys.
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