The Worst Marketing Email. Ever.

public stocks punishmentYesterday, Mark posted this email that he received on June 19th:

“I know I have reached out to many of you before about this, but I wanted to make sure you all were aware of what I’m offering. Next Wednesday, June 24th is the end of XXXX fiscal year for 2009. Thursday, June 25th starts our new fiscal year (2010). As of today I am qualifying for our annual trip (XXXXXXXXXX) at XXXX which this year it’s in Ireland. I am 3 accounts away from making it happen. I am giving anyone who refers me a company (new or existing) that signs and starts XXXX by next Wednesday the following options:

· If you’re a client a FREE MONTH OF SERVICE
· If you’re a client or a prospect you’ll get a $25 Gift Card (to wherever you’d like) for a company that processes on a Monthly/Quarterly basis
· If you’re a client or a prospect you’ll get a $50 Gift Card (to wherever you’d like) for a company that processes on a Bi-weekly/Semi-Monthly
· If you’re a client or a prospect $100 Gift Card for a company that processes on a Weekly basis”

So, let’s see, the account exec gets a trip to Ireland, and the client gets… a $25 gift certificate. Whoever wrote this is completely focused on his own potential reward. If I received this email, not only would I not sign up, I think I’d unsubscribe, and cancel my account if I had one!

The purpose of a marketing email, or a Web site, or a brochure is to help your clients and prospects solve their problems, using your solution. You are there to help them save money or time or effort, and your marketing should reflect that.

I don’t know what this person was selling, but here are a few ideas for better ways to get referrals:

a) regularly offer discounts (or significant rewards) in return for referrals – not just when he wants something
b) remarkable products or services that lead to word of mouth marketing (which is free, permission-based, and relevant)
c) create a tribe of fans with outstanding service (we’ll fix your problem in 24 hours or your monthly service is free)
d) send regular updates on better ways to use his product (developing a relationship with his customers, instead of shouting at them).

What would you suggest?

One thought on “The Worst Marketing Email. Ever.

  1. I’d hold a teleseminar that tells my audience how my product or service was able to help my customers. And not in a vague sense, either. But I would get specific and go through some of the steps that I took to help my customers.