The Importance of Getting Your Email Marketing Right

Does this sound familiar?

“Dear Sir/Madam,

Do you want to see your website in Top 10 position in Google or other major search engine?”

Day after day I receive umpteen of these emails from SEO companies (and others) telling me they can get my website into a top 10 position in Google.

First, this is obviously a blanket email, because if they’d done any research they’d realise that my website was already on the front page for my chosen keywords.

And secondly, it’s addressed to ‘Sir/Madam’, so they haven’t bothered to take the trouble to personalise their email.

Not a great start then.

We’re all used to getting these types of emails, but it’s essential that you don’t fall into a similar trap when undertaking your own email marketing.

To spam or not to spam, that is the question

A little while ago I posted on the UK Business Labs forums about email marketing and how to get the most from it by offering relevant and targeted emails to your own, home-grown opt-in marketing list.

This caused a furore as it was intimated by a reader that email marketing was spam regardless of whether you use an opt-in list or a bought list.

However, provided you follow a few basic courtesies you should avoid alienating any of your customers.

Be clear from the start

The only way to gain trust and keep your customers happy is to be clear and upfront with then from the outset.

If you are cultivating your opt-in list to send out a newsletter, tell your customers how frequently you’ll contact them.

If you want to send a newsletter and occasional email marketing messages or offers, again let them know. If possible, offer a choice of messages so they can opt-in, for example, to your newsletter but not your other emails.

Giving them choice and being open and honest about what you intend to do with their email address will generate that all important trust that’s vital for strong and lasting customer relations.

Divide and conquer

As mentioned above, splitting your email marketing list and offering different communications that people can opt in and out of will help you target your marketing efforts.

That way, you won’t cheese off half your customers.

Get personal

Don’t send out generic emails addresses to ‘Sir or Madam’. Use their name and make your communications personal.

So, is using an opt-in list spam?

Not in my book.

People who want to receive your news and offers gave those email addresses. So, provided you stick to your promise of what you’ll send them and when, how can that possibly be seen as spam?

After all, Wikipedia defines Spam as:

…the use of electronic messaging systems to send unsolicited bulk messages, especially advertising, indiscriminately.

And, as your list has opted in to your messages they’re not unsolicited.

Over to you

What do you think about this issue?

What do you class as spam?

Leave your comments below and give us your take on this contentious issue.

 

Sally Ormond – Copywriter

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#1 Newsletter Industry » Blog Archive » The Importance of Getting Your Email Marketing Right on 08.28.12 at 2:08 pm

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