If you've ever pitched the idea of creating an email preference center to your team, you know what a tough sell it can be. "I had a meeting this morning where we started to list out all the different country and local laws governing choices across various brand-service agreements," writes Stephanie Miller at the MarketingProfs Daily Fix blog, "and it quickly became overwhelming. It was no help that the database guy kept saying, 'That'll cost you more.'"

So what do you do when the director of marketing throws her arms in the air and asks whether a preference center is really the best way to spend the department's time, energy and resources? According to Miller, you have arguments like these at your disposal:

Preference centers enhance revenue. "Prove your revenue opportunity by measuring for the same set of subscribers, the difference in response rates between messages that have explicit permission (information specifically requested by this subscriber) and messages with assumed permission (everything else)," she recommends. It's hard to debate the merits of typical lift, which could range from 2 to 200 percent.

Preference centers reduce cost. When you send irrelevant or untargeted messages, more subscribers hit the spam button, which has the effect of depressing inbox placement across the board. "If you don't reach the inbox," she notes, "you can't earn a response."

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