Does someone test email campaigns frequency?

Between the Mexicans paying for the wall and Jerry and Pierre coming running, hat in hand, when they realize they might not get their gooseberry jam this spring, there’s been a lot of bluffing lately by people whose hands consist of a joker, a Blockbuster video card, some lint, and a dry cleaning receipt. It feels like part of the zeitgeist: demand everything for nothing and if the opportunity for reasonable compromise appears it’s a sign you didn’t ask for enough so you crater the deal and demand more.

I got an email this morning, 9:00am Christmas Day, containing a flyer from a retailer I’d given an address to. They’ve been way too aggressive, and I’ve been meaning to do something about it, and that was enough to push me over to actually taking action.

So, at this point, the retailer is about to lose all contact with me: I’m going to unsubscribe. They will have nothing. I just want fewer emails, maybe once a week. Oh, look, they have a thing for that. Finally, someone who’s learned from… no, I don’t want to give you my birth date, I just want fewer emails. Oh, that’s not possible, the only way to lessen the spam is give my personal information? Or, y’know, just unsubscribe completely. Bye. Now I’m past disinterested and into angry and won’t shopping with them at all, at least for the near future.

Has someone actually done the math and found that this works,or is it just another example of some genius in marketing coming up with the idea of hijacking your “back” button to keep you on the site and wondering why ad blockers are killing their revenue?

I was just discussing this with my other half recently. We both get daily spam from pretty much every place we have done business with in recent years. Sometimes there are two or three spam emails per day.

I look at as some sort of prisoner’s dilemma where if all retailers were “nice guys” everybody would be happy getting an email every few weeks, but the temptation would be for one to cheat and send daily spam, thereby keeping “top of mind” for many people and probably outperforming the nice guys.

In the end the threat of being the wallflower passed by because of no aggressive email campaign forces everyone to send multiple emails a day, resulting in mass unsubscribe and junk email rules that hurt all of the retailers.

Prisoner’s dilemma indeed.

I don’t unsubscribe because I really don’t believe that most of them will respect it. I simply block everything from them for all time and move on. They can believe, should they wish, that they’re getting through. I never see it, though.

If they have an update your information here option, try this. I edit all my info along with a bogus email address.
So far it works better than the unsubscribe button.

I came to this idea trying to stop employment web sites from contacting me after I’ve unsubscribed from them.
So far it’s working great.

The only research I’ve ever seen on it was for political campaigns, where frequent emails raised more funds than further-spaced ones. But those studies were done some years ago, before everyone was doing email campaigns constantly, and politics is a different animal from retail sales, so I couldn’t even guess if it has much effect on sales.

For the GQ part, I haven’t read about a study, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see that more infrequent contacts isn’t necessarily more effective, as people are getting information overload from everywhere.

Like many people, I manage my email span from “friendly” sources by having them me address for registering with sites or businesses and then I just go and clean it out a couple of times a week. Much better than having come to my regular email account.

I’ve had pretty good success with unsubscribe from reputable sources. My dedicated account is a hotmail account and they have some great features including sweep to eliminate all emails from a particular address, a feature which will keep the only latest email and an easy-to-use block.

The silliest example of a company spamming you was one woman who would give tips for organizing for people like me who struggle. To find her site, she would send out zillions if newsletters mostly with ads. (Smack.) Just what we needed.

With email campaigns, testing is usually not considered due to low investment cost. Before email, one efficient method was mass mailings and were more expensive due to the cost of paper, printing and postage and promoters usually received about a 2% response rate. I have no idea what mass emails produce in actual responses but obviously they seem to work for the sender.

I want to say the statistic I saw bandied about was physical mail 2% response, spam email less than 0.02%, but even with that abysmally low response rate it was far more economical to focus on emails than physical.

Any normal (not scammer) business will respect an unsubscribe message. I’ve never had a problem with one. Which means that I get messages about orders I’ve placed when I need to get them.

The email solicitations I don’t understand are the ones from travel websites. I booked a hotel in West Cornhole, Pottsylvania in 2011, and I still get regular emails saying “Great hotel deals in West Cornhole!!!”. How is that supposed to entice me? Hotel rooms aren’t exactly an impulse item.

I recently got involved in a banner ads program, not emails I know but related, and was told that a 0.3% click-through rate is considered an excellent response rate.
It wasn’t cheap either-paying all the middlemen got expensive. I can’t see how it is worth it for the vendor, but I am no expert.

I get spammed at work from my corporate email sentinel telling me I got mail from a dodgy (to them) source. I don’t want it in the first place, I’ve checked and it is a legitimate site, but the software won’t let it through or give me a whitelist option so I can even unsubscribe so I wouldn’t have to ever deal with it again. If I don’t deal with the email bot, it reminds me every day for a month before it automatically deletes it. Shit, let it through and I’ll set a rule to send it to delete file myself until the unsubscribe option kicks in.

There’s a big music festival in Milwaukee every year. For quite a while I was on their mailing list. It was nice to get an email once or twice a month telling me about the bands they’ve booked for the upcoming summer. A few years ago they did a campaign where they decided for the 90 days leading up to the festival, they’d send out a daily email about it. At first it was no big deal (‘Aerosmith is coming to this stage’/‘Toad the Wet Sprocket will be at that stage’ etc). But they clearly ran out of steam quickly. After a few weeks many of the emails had ‘announcements’ about bands that we’d already been told about. On top of that, they started announcing concerts for the off season (two of the big stages have concerts all summer).

I finally unsubscribed but I also emailed them to let them know that due to the bombardment of emails, now I won’t get anything.

I did the same thing with Pizza Hut. I don’t mind an email/coupon code once a week or so. But every time I order a pizza I get a confirmation, a thank you after I pick it up, and a two surveys 24 and 48 hours later like clockwork. 4 emails for one pizza on top of multiple emails a week, sometimes multiple emails a day. I unsubscribed from them as well, and let them know why.

At least with some places you can pick and choose what emails you get.

I worked for a company whose business model was to generate marketing emails for other companies. They relied on tracking how well the campaigns worked because that’s how they kept their business.

I contacted a friend from that company about this and he said that what makes for a good response rate depends on several factors - the target audience, the relationship between the company who contracted for the emails to be sent and the target audience, and what constitutes a response. He says that a good response can be from 1% to over 50%.

Here’s a little tidbit that I learned from working there - if the email has a coupon and you use it, that use is being tracked and will be used in future email campaigns to more hopefully get you to spend even more money.