When you run an email marketing campaign, permission and consent are hugely important to its success. As much as it relies on the quality of your promotional material and your copy, your email campaign also relies on a few words from your customers – the most important one being 'yes'.
The importance of opting in
Email marketing is fundamentally different from direct mail, argues research firm MarketingSherpa. If someone doesn't want a message they get in the letterbox, it goes in the bin. If they don't want an email you've sent them, they can mark it as spam and get you in trouble. This is why using opt-in mailing lists is so important – so that everyone on that list is there because they chose to be, not because you put them there.
Emailing people without their permission is a waste of your time and theirs.
What are the consequences of sending to a mailing list without permission? At the minimum, you run the risk of sending promotional material to people who aren't interested, and never would have been your customers anyway. This is a waste of your time and theirs.
It gets worse when a recipient is annoyed enough to mark your email as spam – and the more people who feel that way the worse it gets. Email marketing platform Mailchimp points out that if your ISP receives too many spam notifications about you they'll put you on a blacklist, meaning messages you try to send to anyone on their network will get blocked. Once your name is on a blacklist, it's difficult to get it taken off, so it's really much better to avoid the possibility in the first place.
How do you make sure you're not spamming?
If you're trying to build a mailing list yourself, the important thing to remember is not to be too pushy, and not to overstep your limits. Don't add people to your list without their permission, and don't use lists for more than you promised when they signed up. It may make the process more difficult, but it ensures that you avoid the risk of spamming and alienating your customer base.
For an easier option, you can turn to a list broker like us here at the Prospect Shop. We have more than 40 email lists, all of which are opt-in and compliant with ADMA Direct Marketing Code of Practice and National Privacy Principles.
To find out more about the important role trust and permission play between you and prospective customers, check out our ebook: "Playing the long game: gaining trust and repeat business with relationship marketing", or get in touch with us today.