1-800 numbers get thumbs up from consumers: Study

Although the figures are American, a just released survey in the u.s. says consumers are responding positively to 1-800 number ad campaigns.The survey, from MATRIXX Marketing, found 84% of those interviewed had a favorable opinion of a company providing a toll-free...

Although the figures are American, a just released survey in the u.s. says consumers are responding positively to 1-800 number ad campaigns.

The survey, from MATRIXX Marketing, found 84% of those interviewed had a favorable opinion of a company providing a toll-free phone number.

The survey found almost three-quarters of the respondents thought 800 numbers were the most appropriate way to reach a company to order.

This year’s 800-Number Image Survey built on a similar survey conducted in 1992.

Three hundred interviewees were selected from random u.s. household lists, with no more than one completed interview from any zip code.

The survey also reported 32% of those interviewed say print is the primary source for obtaining 800 numbers – down from 52% in 1992 – and a further 32% say television is the primary source of toll-free numbers, up from 18% in 1992.

Phone books and directory assistance were cited by 27% of respondents as being the primary source for obtaining 800 numbers; and a further 24% cited brochures and pamphlets.

Bills and bank statements were named by 22%, and catalogues drew a 19% rating.

Product packages came last, with 17%.

The younger the consumer, the more likely he or she is to cite print, tv or packaged good as the primary source of finding an 800 number.

Brochures and phone-related sources skew towards an older market.

The survey also says up considerably is the growth of vanity toll-free numbers, similar to vanity car licence plates, in which personal or significant letters and numbers replace arbitrarily assigned numbers.

Consumer preference for these numbers reached 43% in 1994, up from 24% two years earlier.

The survey said twice as many respondents prefer an 800 number to be shown continuously during a tv spot rather than just at the end of it.