Tuesday, 16 October 2012 10:10

Consider email frequency, expert urges

Written by David Howes

Brands using email marketing have been advised to consider frequency in order to best ensure the audience doesn't end up alienated or annoyed.

Writing for marketingweek.co.uk, blogger Russell Parsons explained that email messages are unlike their 'snail' mail equivalent, meaning a different approach was needed.

Parsons claimed that - in his experience at least - unsolicited mail is seen as a part of life, with the interesting ones kept whereas the others are popped into the recycling bin without second thought. Email, on the other hand, has the capacity to annoy users because it is not seen as unavoidable as postal mail often is.

In light of this, Parsons suggests that email marketers need to be confident their recipients are happy to receive such messages and remember signing up for them in the first place, emailinstitute.com reports.

Marketers should also give some consideration to frequency in order to get the right balance, Parsons suggests. Sending too few emails means the brand can slip from the consumer's minds all-too easily. Too many messages, on the other hand, could damage the brand in the eyes of the consumer, leading them to go from brand ambassadors happy to sign up for messages, to annoyed consumers looking to opt out.

Parsons added: "Email marketers need to learn the same lessons that other direct marketers are - that less is often more.

"In the absence of any email equivalent of the Mail Preference Service - emailers are required by the Information Commissioner's Office to provide consumers with an opt-out but there is no independent service to do that on their behalf - then a little more restraint is required."