Lose Subscribers Fast

I'm a big fan of Rosa Maria's Drive-In. Great burritos (the CVC is da bomb!) with homemade tortillas within walking distance. And I get a free burrito on my birthday! But the email message I received from them today is fodder for a blog post:

Hi there to all of you Rosa Maria's supporters! Please take this opportunity to make sure that the information you have provided us with is correct. We have received many mail items back. We would like to make sure that you receive the fun stuff we send!

Alright, Internet marketers: what's wrong with this message? Ponder my response and see if you're making the same mistakes:

Hey, Nikki! FYI: there are several quick ways to get your subscribers to immediately mark your message as spam:

  • Use a From address that's different from any of the other messages they've received from you in the past. Your subscribers (and any anti-spam software they use) expect your messages to come from the same address every time.

  • Use a From name (Nikki Blackwood) that means absolutely nothing to them. Did I sign up to get messages from Nikki Blackwood? No! Use "Rosa Maria's" instead.

  • Use a subject ("correct address") that's similar to the 1,000 other spam messages I get daily. How about "Does Rosa Maria's have your correct address?" -- it identifies the sender, it engages the reader (and gets your message opened), and it looks like it was written by an adult (proper caps, full sentence).

Assuming you're using a reasonably modern autoresponder, though, it's completely unnecessary to send out messages like this. First, if your subscribers get this message, you obviously have their correct information. Second, if you're getting bounce-backs, your AR should handle those for you by disabling the subscription and preventing you from mailing to the subscribers again.

By the way, be sure to promote your Facebook page and Twitter account in your email messages, too!