We’ve all heard it and probably all said it: ‘There is nothing worse than . . .’ Invariably it is wrong, as I can testify after rebreaking a toe about a week after I broke it originally. However, from my, regrettably, more experienced position, even I can understand some of the complaints about irritating email marketing ploys.
I feel that most of the criticisms result from people being misled. The subject line offers a product for £27.50 and then, when VAT and postage are added, you are looking at £35. The result of such trickery is a better open rate and a number of unsubscribes.
There is a temptation, one I suppose we have all given into, to be more subtle. Ambiguous wording led me to believe that I would get updates to the maps on my satnav for ‘life’. Whilst I expected to buy another after five years or so, as this was my norm, the offer seemed too good to miss. And it was as it did not include speed cameras. Anyone asking my opinion of my latest toy was told to read the adverts very carefully.
There might be something worse than the false image. The view from the terrace, across rolling fields, or the picture of the product showing it is up to date ‘fashion-wise’ with the caveat underneath, ‘Image for illustration purposes only’ has me doubting everything else in the marketing email.
Not only that, one of the major hurdles everyone in online sales has to overcome is one of generating trust. With the anticipation of unmanned complaints lines, your customers will want to be able to depend on what you say and shoe. Once that goes, your email marketing list will shrink.
In a crowded and competitive part of the software market I have stuck with one company for years. Once, I queried whether their software could perform a specific function. By reply, and on a forum open to the public, I got the prompt reply that it could not. An add on, at a reasonable price, was their advice.
Being honest with your customers, potential or otherwise, brings significant benefits.