It’s 6 p.m. on a typical Monday and my office e-mail box has logged in 110 e-mails today. As is true of most workdays, about 20 percent of them were from people or businesses I knew or people or products I want to know. The rest were solicitations or introductions from those who shall be know as the “deleted mob.”
I’m not complaining, mind you . . . I can tie a chunk of my own compensation to efficient and targeted e-mail as can most modern day publishers. We live by the marketer who wants to use our qualified readers to target, often in some sort of adjacency to content. But does anyone else think it’s just gotten out of hand?
Here are just a few of the things that some publishers are doing today that really irritate me and, I think, help us devalue our brands and our relationships with our readers:
Let’s be chums: Why do publishers think it is okay to personalize e-mail blasts to, among others, “Dear Warren N,” or “Dear W,” or “Dear (insert name) or “Warren?" I’m a formal kind of guy so, “Dear Mr. Bimblick,” is fine for me. Or if you really prefer the familiar, “Yo” works for me more than these just plain wrong salutations.
The sneak attack: That’s those publishers who run webinars that I don’t sign up for and then email me – “You missed our client-sponsored webinar on a topic.” Only problem is they don’t always tell me the topic.
Speaking of webinar pitches: “Top 15 reasons why . . . “ or “A free checklist of the 7 things . . .” Couldn’t the marketers of these things be more original. How about, “Your business will self-destruct unless you listen to tips on how not to do email?"
Lousy house ads: So many e-letter published populate their e-letters with house ads for subscriptions or events that are clearly picked of from somewhere else. You can’t read the date of the event. Or, there are nine typefaces crammed into a tiny space. And the clip art.
Anyway, time to go home and get through my personal e-mail box.
Warren Bimblick is senior vice president, strategy and business development, at Penton Media.