Truth be told, I am not a fan of email marketing. When done right, it can be effective to regain the attention of customers who have lost interest, or continue to feed and improve existing customer relationships, but in my experience, most companies do not use effective strategies in targeting and segmenting their email newsletter lists, rendering their email marketing campaigns ineffective.
Emails have become quite boring these days as they are seen as obsolete and out of synchronization with times so you people may rather find the best Sales Tracking Software for your business and go into sales as that is a far better outcome than email marketing.
Over the past few days, I’ve been reviewing email advertising sent to my email account, and have compiled a list of my top five pet peeves when it comes to email marketing campaigns, in reverse order, so you’ll have to go to the bottom of the list to see what I find the most annoying when it comes to advertising emails.
- The content of the email is completely irrelevant to me.
The best example I can give from my own email box is from a parenting newsletter I’m subscribed to. The site asks you for your child’s date of birth or due date, so that they can send you information about what your child should be doing at a certain age, milestones they should be working toward, and so on. So why, with an 18 month old, am I getting email advertising (presumably used to cover the cost of the company’s newsletter) about signing up for cord blood banking services? Not only do I not have any interest in this service, once a baby is born and you’ve taken them home from the hospital, you physically can’t use this service.
- I can’t find a way to opt-out from your email newsletter without a magnifying glass.
I realize that it’s not ideal to have people want to opt-out of an email newsletter, but it happens. I recently got subscribed to an email mailing list because I had started to order a product from the company and then found a better deal elsewhere. When I started getting their newsletter twice a day (another pet peeve I will address shortly), I wanted to opt-out. Buried in some legal mumbo jumbo at the very end of the email, in four point font, was a link to “change your email settings”.
To be fair, the company smartly offered me a 25% off coupon after I had unsubscribed (great strategy!), but at that point I was so annoyed by the fact that they had hit on two of my five pet peeves that I didn’t want to do business with them anymore.
- The subject line in your email doesn’t grab my attention.
I don’t have much to say about this, other than that if your email headline says something to the effect of “Hi friend”, or “Just for firstname.lastname@example.org”, I’m not going to open the email. You might be legitimate, you might be part of a phishing scheme, but from this headline, I have no way to know, and I’m not going to open the email to find out. Where is the targeting? Where is the call to action?
- Your email newsletter sends me so a page I don’t have access to!
I can understand, sometimes you want to send an email newsletter to get someone to sign up for premium content on your website, especially if you’re a blogger or news-oriented site. However, it is really annoying to see a headline and summary for an awesome story in an email newsletter, and then click on the link and be told “Sorry, you need to be a paid subscriber to view this content.” When this happens, I just feel tricked, like my intelligence has been insulted.
My suggestion: link to free content within the email newsletter, then within the free content, offer links to premium content (and indicate on your website whether that content is premium or free before I click the link).
Furthermore, if your email newsletter has broken links…shame on you.
- You send too much email!
I cannot express how annoying it is to get email advertising from a company three times a week. If I haven’t purchased from you in six months (or never), emailing me multiple times within a week isn’t going to change my mind. Be smart – segment your email lists based on purchase history and frequency. If I’ve bought from you in the last month, I might want to hear from you weekly or biweekly. If it’s been six months or more (or never), I might only want to hear from you once a month.