I own a small business and we'd like to start marketing via email, sending coupons, advertising
sales and specials, etc. With all the things in the press about spam lately, we want to be very
careful to avoid this. Where can I get the most up-to-date guidelines on this? Any advice would be
Used improperly, e-mail is nothing more than spam, alienating all those who receive it. Marketers must, as a baseline, have a good idea that the content will appeal to the recipients and must be sure that the recipients can opt out of receiving e-mails that don't appeal to them. Marketers are still often missing the basics of building on relationships by sending unsolicited mass e-mail. With a customer relationship management (CRM) strategy in place, marketers can use information from a variety of sources to add context and personalization to the message to make it more relevant (and therefore more appealing) to the targeted audience.
By 2003, the e-mail volume is expected to grow to 36 billion e-mails sent per day worldwide, more than triple the nearly 11 billion e-mails sent per day worldwide in 2001. As a result, people are annoyed not only with spam (basically, e-mail sent without permission), but even with permission-based e-mail - there is just too much. E-mail for marketing purposes must become more customer-centric and be carefully managed if enterprises want customers to respond.
This was first published in May 2003