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This topic contains 9 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Jennifer Mattern 1 month, 3 weeks ago.

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  • #27990

    Jennifer Mattern
    Keymaster

    When someone pitches you for something via email, when does it go too far? After how many email pitches do you go from simply not being interested to forming a negative view of a company? Essentially, when does it cross the line from good marketing to bad PR?

    For me that depends on the kind of pitch a little bit. I get annoyed by the first pitch if it’s completely unsolicited (when they generally harvest my contact info in domain registration WHOIS records — meaning I’m often hit on multiple email addresses at once). The same is true if it’s poorly targeted.

    For better targeted email marketing, I have a three email rule. If you pitch me on something three times and I don’t buy, sign-up, or even respond, the emails need to stop. Keep going and I’ll probably discontinue whatever relationship I already have with you, or at least you’ll piss me off enough that I’ll remember the intrusive, nagging behavior for a while. Neither is something you want as a business.

    What about you? When does email marketing cross the line? At what point do you stop sending messages to solicit new business if someone doesn’t respond?

     

    Jennifer Mattern - Owner 3 Beat Media

    Professional Blogger, Freelance Business Writer, Author

    #29891

    Amasty
    Participant

    I definitely don’t like getting emails that I haven’t sign up to. That’s in our company we send emails to only those people who are interested in them. This helps to achieve higher delivery and open rates which is important. Moreover, hardly anybody will mark the email as spammy if he requested it himself.

    So relevancy + loyal audience = base of good email marketing campaigns.

    #29892

    Jennifer Mattern
    Keymaster

    All good points!

    Jennifer Mattern - Owner 3 Beat Media

    Professional Blogger, Freelance Business Writer, Author

    #29905

    LoriWidmer
    Participant

    It’s a fine line, for sure.

    I know personally, I’m not okay if I’m getting one solicitation a week for things I’m not interested in. I agree that farming my email from WHOIS is a complete turn-off.

    That said, I have a few people who solicit weekly and I’m fine with it. I know them, they’re pitching something that’s related to what I do, and they’re not killing me with over-the-top marketing pitches that scream at me. For me, the messaging is the deciding factor as much as the relevance.

    When I market, I send one note every two or three months. One is an introduction, two is a follow-up, three is a check-in to see if needs change…If they don’t respond, I cut back to sending them a note every six months. I won’t pester them, but until they say we never use freelancers, I assume they’re not responding because they don’t have a need at that time. Plus, people leave jobs. It’s a good way to introduce myself to the new person, and in at least one case, my follow-up six months out ended up in a gig.

    #29913

    Jennifer Mattern
    Keymaster

    I had a frustrating email marketing issue this week. Smithsonian Magazine has been spamming my inbox for years (and sending me unwanted pitches via snail mail). They’re pushing me to renew a subscription. The problem? That subscription ended 7 years ago! Plus, it was a guest subscription for someone no longer in my life (a relative of an ex), and frankly, I don’t even know that the person is still alive.

    Now it’s not spam if you had a commercial relationship. Unless you’ve asked to be removed from their email list. I’ve done that. Multiple times. I get unsubscribe confirmations, but the emails keep on coming.

    Earlier this week, I’d had enough. When they spammed me yet again, I responded (didn’t seem to be a no-reply catch-all email). I left them a harsh message about the continued spam and made it clear any further messages (every single one) would be reported not only to the FTC but to every major spam blacklist and to their email marketing service’s abuse department (which I was able to track down via the email headers). In other words, keep spamming me and I’m going to do everything in my power to get your email marketing account shut down or at least get you on spam lists so your emails struggle to get through to other recipients.

    It’s still early, but not another email so far. I really hope it ends there. The sad part? I used to have a lot of respect for the magazine. And another magazine in their family was on my pitch list (not anymore). That’s what ill-conceived email marketing can do — destroy your reputation among the very people you’re hoping to reach.

    Jennifer Mattern - Owner 3 Beat Media

    Professional Blogger, Freelance Business Writer, Author

    #29927

    LoriWidmer
    Participant

    That’s so frustrating! I hope it stops, too. Sounds like you’ve done everything to let them know (and then some!).

    I had two organizations that did that. One I’m no longer a member of (but I belong to their LI group). The other — I’ve no idea how they ever got my name, but multiple attempts later, they stopped. At least, I think they did. It’s usually when I exhale that they return. ;)

    #29936

    Jennifer Mattern
    Keymaster

    LOL Exactly. Every time I think it’s going to stop, and I get a bit of a reprieve, there they are again. And all they’re doing is spending money to make sure I never want to buy their magazine again.

    Jennifer Mattern - Owner 3 Beat Media

    Professional Blogger, Freelance Business Writer, Author

    #30058

    lesley_vos
    Participant

    If I am not signed up to emails, I will never open them. Sometimes it depends on their subject anyway: if it sounds interesting, I may open the email itself, read it and… forget about it probably (I am just interested in HOW they describe their offer). If there are some links inside  – I will never open them as well. If I am interested in email marketing, I will sign up to get newsletters from them. All other marketers… Sorry, guys, not today.

    #30091
    Sharon Hurley Hall
    Sharon Hurley Hall
    Participant

    And then there are the people who find you online and think it’s ok to send you their spammy offer via your contact form.

    Professional Writer for 25+ years: Online Writing Portfolio : Writing Career Advice : Google+ Profile

    #30101

    Jennifer Mattern
    Keymaster

    I hate it when they do that through my quote request form. It’s a lead form for prospects, and yet I get marketing and SEO pitches from others through it. Very annoying, especially given that the email address for other message types is right on the page.

    Jennifer Mattern - Owner 3 Beat Media

    Professional Blogger, Freelance Business Writer, Author

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