Sunday, May 08, 2005

Email Marketing Gone Bad

The other day I got an email that perfectly illustrates what can go wrong. How many of these mistakes have you made?

1. I received an email with an unknown restaurant name in the Subject line. One to which I had never been, let alone signed up on their mailing list. Once I opened the email it became clear that the same owners owned this unknown San Mateo restaurant and one of my favorite restaurants in San Jose. This still didn't answer the question of why I was getting an email from them. Later it dawned on me that I reserve at the restaurant via, and there is a question on whether you'd like to receive special offers etc. from the restaurant, and I probably checked "Yes." But that was way too much work for me to wrack my brain and figure it out. Are you telling me you couldn't split your list into those who signed up via Restaurant #1 and those who signed up via Restaurant #2 that is over 30 miles away? Lazy!

2. Perhaps the most egregious (and basic) mistake was the recipients of the Newsletter were cc'ed, not bcc'ed. All 842 of us! Yes, 841 people now have my email address. That. Is. Not. Good.

3. There was no opt-out or unsubscribe message at the bottom of the email. No message telling me why I was on their list, but more importantly, no message telling me how to get off the list. Pretty sure that violates the most basic rules of CAN-SPAM right there.

4. The 'Reply-To' email address was not operational. So, not only is there no unsub message at the bottom of the email, you can't reply and get yourself of the list either. You are essentially trapped on their list with no obvious escape route.

Here's the thing: the newsletter itself? Lovely, well-done...nice looking and chock full of truly interesting content. A recipe, some history, advice on choosing a tequila. The content itself was desirable. The execution of the email send wwas deplorable.

When their 'Reply-To' address didn't work, I sent an email to I outlined the mistakes they made, while complimenting the content. That email did not bounce. Nor did they bother to reply.

More bad form.

Yet I still ate there on Wednesday night...and told the Manager on duty my concerns. Who knows what good that did. But I tried.

It's sad to see a good business go down such a wrong path. Hopefully this will give them a fast education.

Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?