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Traditional Sources for Holiday Gift Ideas Still Lead the Way for Shoppers in 2006, According to Targetbase Survey

Window Shopping and Catalogs Beat Web Sites and Online Advertisements

DALLAS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--According to a recent online survey conducted by Targetbase (, a leading direct marketing agency in Omnicom Groups Diversified Agency Services division, consumers plan to go to traditional retail sources for their holiday gift ideas this season, rather than the Internet.

Targetbases holiday retail survey found that when it comes to ideas for holiday gift buyers, more traditional sources like window shopping (46 percent) and catalogs (45 percent) still beat Web sites (32 percent), online advertisements (15 percent) and emails (14 percent). Going directly to the source (i.e., asking recipients what they would like) still ranked as the best idea of all (67 percent) for most holiday shoppers.

The fact that these tried and true sources of holiday gift ideas are mentioned so often by a group of consumers who were interviewed online is significant, said Scott Bailey, executive vice president of strategy for Targetbase. With all the talk about creating consumer experiences online, it looks like the traditional holiday shopping experience is alive and well and still includes walking the malls and browsing catalogs.

Despite a reliance on offline sources for ideas, 72 percent of respondents said they would purchase at least one gift online this year and 24 percent of those said they would spend more money online this year than last year.

Other findings from the survey include:

  • The start of the holiday season now comes sooner 42 percent of consumers stated that in early November, they had already started purchasing holiday gifts; and 4 percent had already finished
  • The end of the holiday shopping season goes right up to the wire 27 percent of consumers said they wont finish their holiday shopping until late December; 42 percent said they have, at least once, finished their shopping on Christmas Eve
  • A good holiday shopping experience is directly correlated with speed - A majority of consumers (66 percent) indicated that a pleasant shopping experience is impacted greatly by finding a gift quickly

These results indicate the increased importance that marketers must be savvy with integrated marketing in order to reach the right consumer, with the right message, through the right channel at the right time, said Bailey. And the ones that get it right will profit in a big way while the ones that dont will begin to lose valuable customers.


Targetbases online holiday retail survey was conducted to a panel representative of the general population. The study opened on Thursday, November 9 and closed on Saturday, November 11, with 305 respondents successfully completing the survey. Questionnaire available upon request.

About Targetbase

Targetbase, a new kind of direct marketing agency, employs a unique set of world-class marketing capabilities designed to help its clients maximize the value of each customer by turning their data into profits. The company uses proven methodologies to manage data and provide analysis and segmentation that reveal actionable customer knowledge. These customer insights are then activated by powerful, creative direct marketing executions in traditional, digital, and online media, resulting in campaigns that are consistently effective and measurable. Targetbase has created major competitive advantages for some of the most successful brands in the world.

Targetbase has headquarters in Dallas, TX, and an office in Greensboro, NC. Founded in 1979, today Targetbase has approximately 200 employees.

Targetbase is a part of Omnicom Group Inc. (, a leading global marketing and corporate communications company. Omnicom's branded networks and numerous specialty firms provide advertising, strategic media planning and buying, direct and promotional marketing, public relations and other specialty communications services to over 5,000 clients in more than 100 countries.



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