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Don't Send Me an E-mail

  |  November 8, 2010   |  Comments

Three examples of e-mails gone bad.

For marketers, e-mail is our life. Fast, easy, responsive, personal, and so much more. E-mail is what brings us closer to our consumer and makes sure they never forget our brand. But when we are not in buying mode, e-mail has people so fast, simple, easy, and mobile that sometimes we abuse it to the point where it would drive even the most hard core e-mail marketer to beg not to receive e-mails.

Here are some samples of well-intended e-mails gone bad:

Scenario 1: The multitasking e-mailer

What the e-mail said: "Look at me! Tell me what you think. Don't respond directly to the MD send to me so I can edit your response before she sees it."

What the e-mail was supposed to say: "Look at this message! Tell me what you think. Don't respond directly to the MD send to me so I can edit your response before she sees it."

Nope…the HR team did not fire this person for editing what a coworker thought of her. But it did cause a few laughs.

Scenario 2: The auto-correct e-mailer

What the e-mail said: "Hey Lunatic. I wasn't quiet, sure I understood your lady comment. Can you call me?"

What the e-mail was supposed to say: "Hey Lee. I wasn't quite sure I understood your last comment. Can you call me?"

Um…if Lee the "lunatic" does call, I'm not sure it is going to go so well.

Scenario 3: The overworked e-mailer

What the e-mail said: "Can you send me an update by the end of the day?"

What the e-mail was supposed to say: "No one really knows…This e-mail was too vague."

While humorous, and in many cases these errors hit very close to home, these examples remind me of some things we, as marketers, need to keep in mind regarding our e-mail marketing campaigns:

  1. Prospects and clients cannot read your mind. Don't be an overworked e-mailer. Make sure your marketing messages convey substance and context.
  2. Double check details. While errors and typos can be funny in personal e-mails, and overlooked, for marketers we can't afford to show a lack of attention to detail.
  3. Don't confuse your reader. E-mails with too many options will get confused and/or distracted.

For us in the e-mail marketing field, e-mail will continue to be a valuable part of our messaging strategies only if we use it with care. The last thing we want is to receive an e-mail saying "don't send me e-mail."

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jeanniey Mullen

Jeanniey Mullen, a recognized women-in-business and tech, is known for her entrepreneurial style and her ability to build, shape, and grow brands into well-known dominant, successful entities. Jeanniey is a pioneer in email, mobile, and digital marketing; publishing; and brand-building. She now leads her own agency, YellowBean LLC, focused on assisting companies of all sizes with driving innovation and growth. Most recently, Jeanniey was the Global EVP, CMO, and subsequently Chief Growth Officer for Zinio, where she worked to define and implement strategies creating explosive growth through strategic partnerships with publishers, technology companies, brands, and consumers during her five-year tenure. Jeanniey has authored and contributed to multiple books, blogs, and magazine articles. She is a regular columnist for ClickZ, a blogger for Huffington Post, and a frequent keynote speaker. A serial networker, in 2005 Jeanniey founded the Email Experience Council, which was sold to the Direct Marketing Association in 2008. She sits on the Advisory Board for IndieFlix, and on the International Executive Council of the Internet Marketing Association. Jeanniey is recognized as both a Top CMO and Top Author on Twitter, and was most recently featured as Mover and Shaker by the Professional Woman's Magazine, and a featured Woman in Technology by The Legacy Series Magazine.

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