4 Reasons Why You Should Never Add People To Your Email List Without Permission

Lots of spam cans

(photo credit: Spam.budwin.net)

  1. If you add someone without permission what are the odds that person stays subscribed and actually reads what you send?  Don’t kid yourself Charlie Brown, 95% of people could care less about your company. Who do you think you are, Cirque Du Soleil? The more you try to pepper people with your boring company “news or current events”, the more you alienate potential customers. No you don’t need to “just get your message across”, this is a major assumption most organizations make. Why do public entities think we want to hear what they have to say?
    If you must communicate with customers make sure you ask the most important question you know they’re going to ask, “what’s in it for me?”. Are you going to solve a problem that they have or are you going to entertain them? If you’re not doing either of those two you’re wasting their time. 
  2. If you get a lot of e-mails bouncing and people flagging your emails as spam, your emails are going to get caught in spam filters. Email companies are getting smarter and smarter about how to detect spam. If your open rate is low and your unsubscribe rate is high, email providers have a vested interest in filtering out your email. Spamming people with your newsletter is a short-sighted tactic that has huge negative repercussions.
  3. Everyone is a potential customer of yours at some point. If you add people to your list who don’t want your e-mail newsletter you’re ruining the potential for a future relationship with that customer. Why not strive to be the preferred option in your category so that if your potential customer has a question or is in the mood to buy he or she wants to contact you first?The goal should be to build trust in your company so people voluntarily want to do business with you. Trust isn’t build by interrupting people via e-mail to communicate a “brand message” or a “call to action”. Trust is built by providing value in your communication and valuing peoples’ time.
  4. There’s no such thing as a neutral brand impression. Whatever you do as a company, we either like you a little bit more or a little bit less. Do you really want my first impression of your organization to be your “Newsletter” that’s masked as a lazy sales pitch? I sure hope not. You have one shot at a first impression don’t waste it on interrupting me with your e-mail.

Lately I’ve been added to several e-mail newsletters without granting permission. One was from a company that makes custom home creations. I am the last person that would be interested in a custom home creation. By adding me to their e-mail list without permission they increased their subscribers by one and made sure that I will never ever do business with them.

The next unsolicited e-mail newsletter addition was a very prominent business in Regina. What they sent me was five freakin pages, over 1600 words of self congratulatory boring rubbish. It’s like the person in charge of the newsletter never asked the question “who’s going to read this shit?” No one in their right mind has the kind of time to read that much information about a local business unless you’re maybe the Roughriders.

Think about it, do you really want the clientele that has the time to read five pages of your company newsletter?  I mean, who does that? What kind of monster is this person?

On a more serious note. Just don’t add people all willy nilly to your e-mail list. Let it grow organically, make it simple for people to opt-in. Maybe attach a link to subscribe in your e-mail signature. At least then you’ll know that the people who subscribe to your newsletter did so on purpose.