I was speaking with a couple of salespeople I know a few months ago and one of them used the word “idiot” to describe a C-level executive at a company he was hoping to close as a client.

I have a lot of thoughts about this particular situation. The C-level executive is someone I know and like and I strongly dislike use of the term “idiot.” I shared my thoughts at the time, but I’ve had trouble letting go of the experience.

I’ve been thinking about the bigger picture implications of disparaging your prospects. Does it negatively impact your ability to convert them into customers? Read More →

Note from Jeanne: Happy Throwback Thursday! I continue to work with clients to make their marketing more personalized — without crossing into the creepy zone. A discussion I had last week in a meeting reminded me of this article from June of last year (it was originally published as part of my ClickZ Email Marketing Column) — read on for some tips on using personalization in a way that won’t upset your customers.  

Last week I had the pleasure of speaking at the Specialized Information Publishers Association’s (SIPA, a division of SIIA) Annual Conference. My presentation focused on data, technology and testing in digital marketing and a particularly interesting discussion arose around browse reminders.

Were they good marketing tools or creepy?

Read More →

Note from Jeanne: Happy Throwback Thursday! This was one of the most popular columns that ClickZ published last year. Although it was written in February 2015 the facts and opinions expressed here are still 100% on target. Enjoy!

It’s been a long time since the phrase “double opt-in” has crossed my lips, but it came up in not just one but two different conversations in the past few weeks. Both were friends that work in the digital marketing and product development world and they’re really good at what they do. But email isn’t their primary wheelhouse, like it is mine.

So it was interesting that both considered double opt-in the way that email marketing acquisition should be done. One reminded me that, back when we worked together in 2000, I was a very strong proponent of double opt-in. That’s true; but I’ve changed my stance. While I’m not anti-double-opt-in (full disclosure: my email newsletter is and always has been double opt-in, read on to learn why), there are times when it makes sense to go double opt-in and other times when single opt-in is just fine.

So why did my stance change and how do I determine whether to recommend single or double opt-in to a client?

Read More →

Editor’s note: Happy Throwback Thursday! If you’re not leveraging the power of strategic email resends, now is the time! Here’s a primer on how to do it well. This was first published as part of my email marketing column on ClickZ.com back in March 2015. 

One of my favorite sayings is “Work Smarter, Not Harder.”

I was reminded of this recently in a meeting with a client. The organization (a large not-for-profit) engaged our firm for a digital transformation (DT), a large multi-year project. This meeting was outside the scope of that; I was asked to review the email marketing plan promoting their 2015 conference.

Overall, I was very impressed. They’ve put together a very comprehensive, well-thought-out, content-marketing-focused campaign. The conference is in May and the frequency is two email messages a week (it started sometime around the first of the year) until the opening keynote. But here’s what gave me pause: every single email is unique.

Read More →

Earlier this month I re-published an article from last year about a great opt-in campaign executed by T.j.Maxx to entice email subscribers to sign-up for an additional email publication. I loved it because they went for the opt-in — they didn’t just assume that all their current subscribers would want additional content.

I was reminded just how unusual this is last weekend, when I received an email from another brand offering me additional content and more email messages from them. But this one is a negative option opt-out, rather than an opt-in. When you do a negative option opt-out, you assume that silence (no response) equals permission.

Here’s the email message: Read More →

Oops — I meant to publish this last week. A bit delayed, but happy #TBT!

I originally published this on ClickZ last year just after Cyber Monday. I realize we’re a week out but if you are planning a high frequency campaign here are some things to keep in mind based on programs done last year by Keep and Essential Apparel. If you’re not going high frequency on Monday — it’s not too late to add in at least one more send to see if you can boost performance.

And you might also want to check out a companion post I did here on the blog last year called Cyber Monday 2014: Highlights with information on the email marketing I received from 51 brands last Cyber Monday. Enjoy!

How many messages did you send to your email subscribers on Cyber Monday?

Multi-effort email campaigns can dramatically increase your open and click reach. The charts below are from an actual client campaign and illustrate the relationship between single campaign rate metrics and reach metrics. Read More →

It’s happening again…

Organizations are weighing in on the best day and time to post, publish, send and/or tweet — in general when you should let your marketing loose on the world.

Back in the day there were a lot of studies published about the best day and time to send email. Some gave a single day and time; others gave 2 different answers, one to maximize open rate and one to maximize click-through rate.

It’s not a bad thing, but I can’t help but think of the words of one of my favorite philosophers: Read More →

Happy Throwback Thursday! Thinking of launching a new email publication? Here are some best practices for sending it to your existing email list. ClickZ first published this article in November 2014 — but it’s worth a second look. Enjoy!

How do you view the opt-in permission you received from your subscribers?

As a blanket opt-in giving you the right to change send frequency as well as the types of email sent as you see fit? Or a narrow opt-in related to just specific types of messages or email publications that they agreed to receive?

It may seem like an academic question – until you have a new email publication or new type of email alert that you want to launch. Do you start from scratch and ask for an opt-in? Or do you just start sending it to all of your subscribers? Read More →

Note: Happy Throwback Thursday! Isn’t it great when you look back at something you did a few years ago and think “Wow, that was pretty good.” This is the feeling I got when I found this presentation, originally delivered via a Webinar for the American Marketing Association, back in May 2012.

Although it is over three years old the tips hold up — I cover: Read More →