Bad Marketing is Worse than No Marketing

Like everyone else, I am inundated with marketing emails and marketing mail.  The explosion of databases for sale and the close to zero marginal cost of sending one more email have led to inbox overload.  I enjoy the solicitations that include an email below claiming they emailed me before and implying I was too rude to respond to that email. The sender writes a message as if he is doing me a favor and trying to contact me again.  Does lying to a potential customer really work?   I must have missed that in my marketing classes.  I also enjoy the emails that start off, “I know you’re a leader in your organization.  Could you point me in the right direction to…”  I feel like I understand those emails better than the example above because I learned about flattery in marketing classes and in the sales training I have taken.

Last week, I received an email that was either a mail merge gone wrong or a bad cut and paste effort by a marketing person.  My name was wrong in the salutation but it was correct in the body of the email. I guess “Brian” and “Ben” are similar names.  My company name was right too but, to the best of my knowledge, we don’t make t-shirts as the email said we did.  The sad part is this email came from a company we have actually talked with about using their products and services.  That conversation has now ended.

I’ve written in the past: email is a useful marketing tool if used properly.  But you can’t screw it up.  Bad marketing is worse than no marketing.  If you can’t get your marketing message right, don’t send it.

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