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NEWS: ‘Data overload’ scaring away prospects

UK customers have become overwhelmed by the vast amount of content being thrown at them on a daily basis, according to research from Esri UK.

The study revealed that 61 per cent of respondents found the sheer amount of content available and overabundance of sources a major concern.

Many respondents cited irrelevant content (47 per cent) as the main catalyst for email related stress, while 34 per cent regularly struggle to ‘absorb the content.’

Forty-four per cent of people admitted to ‘deliberately ignoring communications’, while a further 14 per cent confessed to hiding their devices to avoid content overload.

When asked how they would prefer information to be presented, 60 per cent said they found maps and graphics more engaging and easier to assimilate.

Lorna Nightingale, head of marketing at Esri UK, said: “As customers, we can all relate to the feeling of being overwhelmed by our constantly-connected culture. Marketers have benefitted from communication channels that are just a click of a button away, instantly updating the news feeds of their target audience.

“However, our survey shows that this is having a detrimental effect on customers as they process ever-increasing amounts of information. Marketers and businesses need to understand the pressure this is putting on individuals and seek new ways to present information, marketing communications and news. Visualising data is proven to be easier to digest, understand and recall. The phrase ‘a picture can tell a thousand words’ has never been more true.”