I currently have 2,235 unread emails in my Gmail inbox. Painful right?! As I started clearing the pile, I realized that most of them are sales emails and other notifications that I apparently don’t take the time to open. In my mind that many that starting to unsubscribe from some things.
Strangely enough, I was sad at canceling some of my subscriptions. It wasn’t that I had no interest in their product or service, I just didn’t have time to open and read all their messages. I’d be willing to bet that a lot of consumers feel the same way. One of the companies I had to part email ways with was AppSumo. Their emails are very clever, their offerings tempting, but I’ve yet to make a purchase and could no longer afford the inbox space.
However, they did a vet good job of trying to engage customers before they took the plunge off their distribution list. They offered a preference system where I could reduce the amount of emails I received by time frame or specialty. More importantly, they encouraged me to follow them on Twitter or Facebook in order to stay in the know on what they are offering without clogging my inbox.
I know it sounds simple, but that last step is where most companies drop the ball. In these times having a preference center is a huge step for a lot of people. However, why not step things up another notch and find ways to engage them via another channel that fits their lifestyle better. They also have “follow us” buttons on the regular email, but consumers likely won’t put 2 & 2 together.
Moral of the story, find ways to keep people engaged and offer them ways to do it that works the best for them. Instead of expecting then to figure out how, hold their hand and give them step by step instructions on what you want them to do. Taking the time to do so will earn your customers interest, respect, and possibly even a follower through another channel. And if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to go follow AppSumo on Facebook now.