1- Offer no way to unsubcribe.
I subscribe to a lot of things. I like to try ’em out. So I get on a lot of email lists. And I’m not afraid. Because I know I can unsubscribe at any time. But every once in a while I can’t unsubscribe. The marketer doesn’t want me to. They want to have a one-way conversation with me without my permission. I HATE THAT! So the number one thing you can do to offend people with your email is “to offer no way to unsubscribe.”
2- Make it really difficult to unsubscribe.
Ok. So this goes with number one. And I think it’s probably self-explanatory. But just to be clear… Email marketers should make it EASY to unsubscribe. Don’t make me jump through hoops. The date is over. I don’t want to dance and I certainly don’t want to kiss. Please let me end it easily. If you use Constant Contact or Mail Chimp. They help you do this. They’re great!
3- Try to trick people in one way or another.
Ah! This one is a doosey! Tricking people. BAAAAAADDDDD! That should be a no-brainer. But recently I got an email promoting a free report that sounded soooo fabulous. So I went to get the report. But then they asked me for more information. Huh? Then I gave them the information only to get a report that was really a one-sheet flier with a lot of pictures. NOT a report. I was duped. I won’t buy from them!
4- Send emails that are irrelevant (and waste your prospects’ time).
Relevance is powerful. We have one client (a travel/hotel company) with hotels in Ireland, England, France, Spain, Italy, Mexico and the Caribbean. When they sent a mass blast to ALL their travel agents (clients) with one, general message… their open rate and click-thrus were sub-par (to say the least). When we identified which agents specialize in each country and sent emails that were highly targeted and relevant (with information that appealed to each specialist), the results were off-the-charts.
Relevance. It’s powerful. It adds another step or two. But the results and ROI are worth the extra trouble.