Adventures in Mobile Marketing

From Free to Paid

Don't Spam
I taught a quick session on “Don’t Spam: Lifecycle Email Marketing Strategies” at She’s Geeky, an un-conference. I went over some basic studies on email marketing behavior, common intervals, and the common life-cycle vs. promotional arguments. I asked folks what was going on in their organization. It seems that, due to the economy, email vendors are turning off free services to their non-profit and other “Cinderella Deal” clients.

For one of my audience members, the choice was to simply go to another vendor. I told her about a few (Constant Contact, MailChimp, MyEmma), and we discussed improvements to her current fundraising schedule. Her non-profit would have to pull in more funds to cover the cost, so it was an unpleasant reality.

For another audience member, the email was so tied in with the online services, that it would be a fundamental shift to change vendors. For a struggling start-up that uses email as a functional part of their application, not just as a marketing channel, I can see the frustration.

What to do? For many Web 2.0 companies and start-ups, start with keeping a fully tested suite of templates that degrade properly across email clients, and hosting your own IP for sending mail (note: with a clean bill of health). In my experience few outsourced email providers (ESP) can handle the demands of truly robust online service company. This is beyond transactional and lifecycle emails, and should be managed by web developers that understand email and can work with the functionality of email. Especially if it’s core to the business, it shouldn’t be outsourced, and not for a fee. I have a suspicion that the “free” was used to reel in the client just so at this point in time the client would have no other option but to continue for a steep fee.

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Written on Monday, 02. February 2009 at 10:32 In the category design, strategy, transactional emails, vendors. Follow the comments via RSS here: RSS-Feed. Read the Comments. Trackbacks- Trackback on this post. Share on FriendFeed

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  1. Dang, all your tweets about She’s Geeky and the great summary above — I really wish I had gone! Next year, definitely.

    Comment: Dana Dowell – 02. February 2009 @ 11:04 am

  2. Banane, that’s great you spoke at She’s Geeky. I would have love to hear you talk about email. Where’s the YouTube clip of you speaking? I’m ready for you to make your way up to up to Seattle. I thinking of holding some variation of BarCamp in 2009!

    Comment: Peter Chee – 03. February 2009 @ 12:02 am

  3. Thanks Peter! That’d be fun- and here’s the post that includes the video re: Social Media, but not one for email. Hmmm.

    Comment: banane – 03. February 2009 @ 11:28 am

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