I’m a loyal customer of beauty products from an independent consultant who does home parties. There are several products that she sells that are on my “must have” list (until they stop making them, but that’s a topic for another blog post). I love the convenience of being able to send an email to my rep and order refills without having to attend a home party, so we have an email-based relationship.
However, I get at least one sales pitch a day – every day – from her and sometimes more than one. I know she’s not sending these to me herself because I can recognize an email “nurturing” or “remarketing” campaign when I see one. The major company she works for obviously sends these out and all she does is provide them with the email addresses of her customers.
I would unsubscribe except every now and then one of these emails is actually of interest to me, regarding one of the products I regularly use. So I put up with the DAILY annoyance. The price I pay for beauty!
Are you burying your customers in email?
Sadly, this is not the only business who pesters me daily with email. There are several others that I buy from fairly regularly and it’s the exact same story. Occasionally there are great offers in these daily emails regarding products I like and want. So I don’t want to unsubscribe. But they really annoy me with the daily hype and nagging. This is the definition of a love/hate relationship.
I don’t think they get it. Just because someone is a customer who occasionally buys products from you and has given you her email address, doesn’t mean she wants you to bury her in daily sales pitches. Please! I buy tons of stuff on Amazon and Zappos, for example, and they never bug me with sales pitch emails.
Do you REALLY need to send email DAILY?
If you are an independent consultant for a company, or you are a small business owner, you need to stop and think like a customer regarding email marketing. If you have any businesses who send you email every day, how do you feel about that? And if you don’t have any businesses filling up your inbox, consider yourself fortunate.
Check your Open Rate and your Click Through Rate
Don’t just look at how many people unsubscribe from your emails. That doesn’t tell the whole story. A certain percentage of your customers WANT to unsubscribe, but they don’t because every now and then one of your emails is of interest to them. You need to look at the open rate and the clickthrough rate also. How many of the emails you send actually get opened? And does anyone click on anything in the email?
Send fewer emails and get more engagement
I actually don’t mind the weekly or less frequent emails that I get from some SMBs that I buy from. And if they feature interesting news or info along with sales or special offers, I love them. That’s what I expected when I gave them my email address. I feel that they respect me and my time because they’re not blowing up my inbox and it makes me more inclined to check out the email and – you know – buy something.
Offer different levels of “opt-in” for email
You have to have an “unsubscribe” link in your marketing email, but the landing page it goes to can give your customer multiple options. Let customers choose the kinds of communications they want to receive from you. Here are some types they can opt in to:
Transactional emails – If someone only wants transactional emails about orders, purchases, shipping, billing, etc. then you should give them the option to just receive those.
Sales, Coupons, Special Offer emails – Some customers love a sale and want to be notified when you’ve got something special going on.
New product/service emails – When you truly have something new to announce to your customers.
Newsletter emails – Not marketing, not sales. A newsletter should be informative and be specifically directed to your audience’s interests. This can’t be a thinly disguised infomercial. This is your opportunity to show that you are a subject matter expert.
Pure marketing emails – Hype yourself! Hype your business, your products, your services. Add coupons and special offers. Don’t pretend to be a newsletter or a transactional message.
Frequency – You may want to let customers tell you how frequently they are willing to hear from you. Subscribers to our newsletter have the option of receiving the weekly version or a monthly version, for example.
You have a relationship with your customers. Just because they gave you their email address doesn’t mean they want to hear from you every day. In relationship terms, that’s stalkerish behavior. Back off and don’t be so intrusive. Your customers will appreciate it.