Anyone with a mailing list runs the risk of being reported to their Internet Service Provider for spam. In fact, every month there are tens of thousands of internet searches done by people who want to report someone for spam.
Despite our strict compliance with spam laws, a few years ago we were reported by a former business associate for spamming when we sent out an issue of a newsletter that she had been getting for months. Why? She had just broken up with one of our relatives and didn’t want to be in a business relationship with us any more. In another instance, a subscriber had simply forgotten they subscribed.
Thankfully, we had done things right. And if you’ve done things right (you are doing it right aren’t you?), and find yourself in a similar situation you’ll be able to show that you were not spamming, and that you are doing things legally.
All of us, at one time or another have subscribed to someone’s list and regretted it. Recently I had subscribed to someone’s mailing list and found myself bombarded six times a day with sales emails. It didn’t take me to long to unsubscribe.
There are also unethical practices where someone makes up things in an effort to get the email opened. One Internet marketer sends out emails that say things like: “Did you try to call me at 3am? If not sorry for bugging you, but someone called and I missed the call. If you did then click here.” Obviously this isn’t true, everyone on his list did not try calling him at 3am. This is an unethical use of the trust that person gave him by sharing an email address and opening his emails.
Although both uses of our email was annoying, this is technically not spam, since each person he mailed to had in fact joined his mailing list. However, doing such tactics greatly increases the likelihood that you’ll be reported as a spammer.
My point is, your subscribers asked to join your list, and asked to receive emails from you. Do not take advantage of their good will by doing unethical things, and don’t bombard them with sales message after sales message.
As honest and ethical Internet marketers we need to hold ourselves to a higher standard. Sure, we may miss out on a few dollars due to having higher ethics, but at least we can sleep at night, right?
Bottom line, do your email marketing the right way. If you are complying with the laws regarding spam, you can easily defend yourself against complaints of spam by subscribers who have forgotten they subscribed or who do not totally understand the law. Permission based marketing is a special form of marketing and one that we should work hard keeping honest.
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Posted on Posted on January 19, 2011 under the following category: Navigating Your Business To Success
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