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The determinants of consumer behavior towards email advertisement

Hsin Hsin Chang (Department of Business Administration, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan)
Hamid Rizal (Labuan School of International Business and Finance, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Jalan Sungai Pagar, Malaysia)
Hanudin Amin (Labuan School of International Business and Finance, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Jalan Sungai Pagar, Malaysia and IIUM Institute of Islamic Banking and Finance (IIiBF), International Islamic University Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)

Internet Research

ISSN: 1066-2243

Article publication date: 31 May 2013




The aim of this study was to develop a theoretical model of email advertising effectiveness and to investigate differences between permission‐based email and spamming. By examining different types of email (i.e. permission‐based email and spamming), the present study empirically tested the theoretical linkage between email advertising values, perceived instrusiveness, and the attitudinal‐behavioural dispositions towards email advertising.


A survey was conducted using 221 respondents from Taiwan. Two scenarios were designed for the present study. The questionnaires were equally divided into two sets, with the first half containing a scenario depicting permission‐based email, and the other half containing a scenario describing a spamming email. Each respondent only received one set of the survey.


Results from a survey of 221 Internet users in Taiwan indicate that values and attitudes toward, and the perceived intrusiveness of, email advertising significantly affect consumers’ behavioral dispositions toward email advertising. The results suggest that permission‐based email is more effective as compared to spam email advertising. For solicited email, consumers perceived less intrusiveness if the email advertisement offered them financial incentives.

Research limitations/implications

The authors acknowledge four limitations in this study. These limitations however provide further direction for future studies in the discipline. The discussion of these limitations is provided.

Practical implications

Importantly, this study yields significant theoretical and managerial implications. Concerned with the context of email advertising, the authors’ work provides theoretical support for both constructs of advertising values and perceived intrusiveness as important. Concerned with the advertisers, this study renders important implications for better planning of marketing mix strategy using email.


This study provides new theoretical insights into factors influencing consumers’ acceptance of email advertising by incorporating perceived intrusiveness as a mediator in the relationship between advertising values and attitudinal‐behavioral dispositions. By empirically comparing the different types of email advertisements of permission‐based email and spamming, the present study also offers better understanding and extending of the current literature on email advertising research.



Hsin Chang, H., Rizal, H. and Amin, H. (2013), "The determinants of consumer behavior towards email advertisement", Internet Research, Vol. 23 No. 3, pp. 316-337.



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