I'm evidently seen as the go-to person for all things IT and email marketing in my family, as not only do they come to me with their problems but they tell their friends to give me a call. It is fair to say that I enjoy the fame. Mind you, for the majority of the time all I do is state the obvious. It can be a little frustrating.
The latest test of my patience, by way of someone I had not met, developed into something of an argument. It was probably my fault as I may have been a little abrupt in telling the person what they were doing wrong. There was probably no probably about it.
It would appear that the seeker of the blindingly apparent was having problems with marketing emails he sent going directly to spam folders, even when previous ones had been accepted by that particular inbox. On the FAQ page on his website were instructions to subscribers on how to avoid this with detailed descriptions for various email service providers. He’d put a lot of work into it. So how, he wondered, could he get his subscribers to put his Send Address on their allowed list?
I am used to not being able to satisfactorily explain complex technical details but I expected to be able to convince somebody of simple marketing realities. It can be summed up in the term 'The customer is always right'. Or, to put it another way, it is up to the marketer to change their ways to cope with the vagaries of the customer.
You have to modify your systems to cope with the needs and behaviors of the subscribers to you email marketing list. Discover what they are doing and find ways to cope with them. It’s fairly basic.
The discussion ended with me giving a bit of a lecture on ways to ensure a marketing email does not fall foul of spam filters. We'll cover it in future posts, although without the abruptness. In the meantime, remember that if your customers are doing something you regard as wrong, you are doing something wrong.