Why do people send email newsletters without asking first if we even want them? Obviously the sender expects we will take notice. Yes, I take notice. But I neither expected the newsletter, nor did I ask for it. It’s a distraction. Typically, those sending the newsletter are just “acquaintances” who have “presumed” on a relationship and “assume” it is OK to send unsolicited commercial email. It is SPAM. As such, I filter out the sender by adding their email address to my email blacklist. But if these “acquaintances” would take time to become “associates” and “friends”, with an appetizing email newsletter introduction, I just might read them and do more.
There are email newsletters I regularly receive. These I’ve subscribed to. Thus I expect to receive them and want to read them. The email newsletters I am referring to in this post usually come from two sources. Either we met at an event and we exchanged business cards, or the sender and I are in the same circle of professionals where an accessible member email list is available. I solved the former situation by removing my email address from my business card. Then, when the person who is eager to add me to their email blast asks for my email, I simply inquire and discover their motive. Email distribution lists for professional organizations can be valuable. However, they should never be used to send unsolicited email.
OK… But I get it. Email interruption marketing can work. People use email newsletters to build awareness with the objective of converting toward a business transaction. Send out enough email newsletters and over time some will engage. Still, it’s SPAM and puts a “bad taste “ in my mouth. The senders should learn from the “good taste” food demonstrators found at various stores.
While doing my food shopping I also get the bonus of sampling food delights at special demo stations to decide if I want to make a purchase. Imagine walking by the demo station only for the person to stop you, open your mouth, and force you to taste their prepared morsel. Yikes! This describes how I feel when someone sends me an email newsletter without asking. Of course, the trained demonstrator would refrain from doing what I described. When I come near, the demonstrator, often busy preparing the food, skillfully captures my attention by stating benefits like, “very, very good”, “on sale today”, “wonderful for breakfast”, “mix with your favorite …”, “gluten free”, “contains 24 essential vitamins”, “recommended daily by…”, “reported to relieve stress”… etc. If I’m interested and see a benefit, I take notice – which may create the desire to “try it”. There is a skill in food demonstration. We should learn from their example when we prepare others to accept and actually read our newsletters. The following document, provided by the California Department of Public Health’s Network for a Healthy California, describes the approach:
“While your demonstrations will vary … , one thing that should remain the same is your ability to engage, educate, and empower consumers by letting them see, taste, and smell how wonderful fruits and vegetables can be.” http://www.cdph.ca.gov/programs/cpns/Documents/Network-FV-RP-FoodDemoTrainingKit-2007-10.pdf
Great direction. How about applying this advice when requesting I receive your newsletter?
So, want your new contacts at events and professional organizations to accept your email newsletters? First, rather than simply becoming an “acquaintance” so you can add them to your email blast, create a relationship and become “friends” or “associates”. Get permission. Build trust. Your conversation needs to “engage” them with “how wonderful” your newsletter is – personally. Create a language so they can “taste, see and smell” the success that will result by becoming a regular reader who applies your message to business and life. When asking others to accept your email, make your presentation so appetizing that it compels them to go beyond just reading what you’ve written and instead to look forward to receiving future issues, to archive them, follow up with comments on your blog, and share your important message with others in their network. It’s rather easy and fun to make things appetizing. “Try it! You’ll like it”.
Read the great article on the G-Lock EasyMail7 blog
“5-Point Checklist Before Sending Cold Email“
Principle 2 – Construct Community Relationships by Design
Principle 5 – Nurture Social Relationships