Thursday, April 8, 2010

Don’t be shady. Take Permission. Know best practices.

A major issue in the email marketing world is that there are many family brands, parent companies, sister companies or their affiliates that are sharing their email subscribers. Consumers are extremely annoyed with getting emails from companies they did not subscribe to and end up unsubscribing. This action committed by companies is legal but is it ethical? Permission-Based Marketing is IMPORTANT.

Getting straight to the facts: let's be logical. Consumers do not have time to read your privacy policy or the fine print that states that they can use your information for their sister brands because it’s the "same" company as they say. These tactics are viewed negatively by users and is a sure way to make the user disinterested in your products quickly. A consumer's permission should not be treated lightly and should be taken seriously. "Companies don’t fully understand the concept of permission marketing" says Simms Jenkins from Clickz.

To prevent your emails from going into the spam box or losing your subscribers, be authentic and give consumers what they ask for. No more and no less. They are giving you access to them but don't take advantage of it. If you do have many brands under your organization, try
cross-promoting. Maybe introduce your product or service through the brand that the consumer is interested in.

Or while a consumer is subscribing to your brand, make sure at the very end you simply ask whether they are interested in your other brands and if they would like to be subscribed to them. Most will say no, but there are those that will say yes. Therefore, you are asking for permission and it will appear to the consumer that their requests are important to your company.

Making the mistake of passing on the consumers profile can cause the company to lose many valuable customers.

Author: Tiffany Wong
Editors: Yasifur Rahman & Courtney Dillsworth

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