You've Got (Tons of) Mail

More than 205 billion emails are sent out every day; email is the glue that helps clever marketing stick. Some 72% of US adults say they prefer that companies communicate with them through email, and 91% say they'd like to receive promotional emails from the companies they do business with. And companies oblige: 73% of them agree that email is a core part of their marketing efforts, while 25% rate it as their top channel for ROI.

But many otherwise-savvy marketers are misusing email, turning to tactics that annoy and infuriate customers. Avoid these six faux pas to ensure you don't annoy your way into the Trash folder.

1. Blast the E-Blast

"E-blast: A ridiculous non-word made up by marketing people who think the term 'e-mail' is inadequate to describe the explosive excitement of their mass e-mails." —Someone named Sarah N., April 22, 2008

Gone are the days of a one-size-fits-all approach to email. Crafting one message and shooting it off to your entire list each week in hopes it'll resonate with the multiple personalities you provide services to just won't work anymore. Few things in life are more irritating than receiving a batch email, only to realize any prior communication with the company has meant nothing—you're just an entry on a spreadsheet.

Customers who sense you don't care will delete, ignore, or—worse still—unsubscribe.

And the negative connotations the term holds make us marketers wary of it, too. E-blasts cut a little too close to our collective insecurities in the marketing industry. They imply we're launching a bunch of spam-filled emails across an unsuspecting list of contacts. I'll skip shifting into email marketing therapist mode, but I'm confident I'm not the first marketer who's taken serious offense at the notion that someone, at one point, thought I sounded even the slightest bit spammy.

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image of Dan Hanrahan

Dan Hanrahan is founder and CEO of email signature marketing tool Sigstr, which makes it simple for marketers to take control of branding and marketing in the employee email signature.

Linkedin: Dan Hanrahan

Twitter: @danhanrahan8