Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Wrong Way

to do email marketing.

It's called spray & pray.

It's why the "Direct Mail" piece that arrives in my mailbox delivered by the U.S.P.S. is commonly called "Junk Mail" by consumers.

Last month I received the following email in my inbox:

Dear Sir/Madam,

My name is Holly DeSouza, and I am the Vice President of Sales & Marketing at Behave Media, Inc.

We are a digital media company specializing in behavioral advertising, search marketing and consumer panel research. We help develop, plan and execute profitable campaigns for Fortune 500 companies by utilizing real-time consumer data with our innovative targeting capabilities. Our clients have seen an increase of 7%-35% in their ROI by utilizing our knowledge and expertise online.

If you would like to discuss how our services can benefit your organization, please feel free to contact me at any time.

Best Regards,

Holly DeSouza
VP, Sales & Marketing
Behave Media, Inc
73 Lexington St.
Boston, MA 02464
P: 800.270.0442


Usually, I would simply delete this. But I thought I would use this as a lesson instead.

The first question that popped in to my mind is, "why didn't my spam filter catch this?" I get an average of 11 spam emails an hour 24/7 that are caught automatically. (Thanks Gmail!)

Then I remembered that Holly got my email from their mailing list since I actually registered at one time to receive emails from her company.

In case you're still wondering what is wrong with this email, think for a moment. She also has access to my name, and it's not Sir/Madam. It's Scott Howard.

Any decent email marketing program can insert a persons name automatically.

She losses credibility and diminishes her company reputation from this one glaring mistake.

Then the rest is just a bunch of crap. Sorry if this is the way you were told to sell yourself, but you've already proved that you are just fishing for a bite or two, or Spraying the in-boxes with your half-hearted attempt and Praying someone will respond to what you wrote.

Better to send out 10 personalized and targeted emails each day or each week, then to send out a few hundred like this one and lose your chance to ever work with the people who received this poorly written email.

But the problem is not entirely Holly's.

I decided to call the number.

I got an automated attendant that told me, among other things, that if I knew the extension of the person I was calling I could enter it and get connected.

Holly didn't include an extension in her email, so I had to wait a full 40 seconds to be told to press zero for the operator.

I pressed zero. Sappy on hold music came on the line followed by the automated attendant telling me that they were too busy to take my call, please leave my name and number and someone will get back to me.

Total time wasted on the phone: 90 seconds.

This company needs help. If you can reach them. If you see yourself or your company making any of these same mistakes, stop it or go out of business.

As always, your comments are welcome.

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