Email Marketing – The Fine Line between SPAM and Success

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May 13th, 2010

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I receive dozens of email marketing messages each day.  They come in all shapes and sizes, from all types of organizations.  Best Buy, Dell, Jos. A Bank and other large retailers, Amazon, Proflowers, and other online business, Insurance brokers and wholesalers – even some of my competitors.

Our company sends out well over 1,000,000 eMarketing messages each year, so I will never complain about receiving these messages.  But I sure wish they could improve their methodologies.  I have many criticisms, but the two most common issues I see are format and frequency.

Format:  Who decided that an email message can only be effective if it is covered with pictures?  Many people open their emails in a text-only format and these messages do not transmit well into text.  Outlook and other programs often block the pictures, also rendering the messages ineffective.  When a message does not open properly, it is often discarded.  Consider a simplistic approach that is primarily text.  Flashiness does not help if the message is never seen.

Frequency:  Many of the aforementioned vendors email me on a weekly basis and some even on a daily basis.  Do I really need to know what is new at Victoria’s Secret every day?  Clearly not.  Remember there is a difference between keeping your name in front of your prospect, and barraging them spammish communications.  Respect the email list, and space out your eMarketing campaigns to at least a 2-3 week interval.

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