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Before initiating your next messaging campaign, look at it from the customer’s perspective. Stock image
Ask Mr. MarketingColumns

A plunger for your email inbox

Thank goodness the election’s over. It’s finally safe to go back into your mailbox.

For months everyone’s been deluged with cries for money to “beat those horrible people!” At its most fevered pitch, 10-15 emails arrived HOURLY. These clogged our mailboxes, overshadowing the usual solicitations, newsletters and legitimate business we needed to transact.

It became so overwhelming that I unsubscribed to everything in sight.

My threats to vote for the other guy were ignored. To avoid being canceled, political parties sent panicky messages from hundreds of email addresses. Deleting them all was like playing whack-a-mole!

I’m not the only one who’s noticed these email misadventures. My friend Darrell got a solicitation from someone who took great pains to personalize the sales message. They successfully cut through the clutter, and he requested a meeting. Only he never heard from them again.

Darrell now asks: “What total moron would spend huge human and $ resources to generate a truly bonified, qualified lead, only to never follow-up? What does that say about the seller’s client service. The incompetence is unfathomable.”

Days later, Darrell heard from another unknown firm requesting introductions to his contacts. He advised them to stop the solicitations … which continued unabated. Now peeved, he responded: “Why do you keep sending me notes when I have unsubscribed on multiple occasions? Why would I hire a company with such poor fundamentals?”

Interestingly, his question provided the perfect opening. Any savvy marketer knows that taking the time to slap creates an opportunity for a clever response. Instead he got crickets.

Poor Darrell’s at the epicenter of email foolishness. When he unsubscribed to yet another marketing firm, they started writing to him, “Dear Unsubscribe…”

Nope, not kidding!

It’s easy to laugh when it’s happening to someone else, but odds are good your business is using email for its marketing. But are you following best practices when it comes to developing and maintaining ongoing customer relationships?

Before initiating your next messaging campaign, look at it from the customer’s perspective. Are you responding appropriately? Do you provide opportunities to unsubscribe?

Because if you’re treating your customers with respect, they’ll cut you slack if a screw-up happens. But if you’re ignoring their legitimate requests, you’re going to upset them … and hurt your chances of making the sale.

With that said, I wish you a week of profitable marketing.

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