In the course of coming up with ideas and researching fun things to write about for the blog, I often stumble across a number of apps specifically geared toward trying to help people manage their inboxes. There’s a fascinating battle between marketers, who generally tend to want to keep their lists as large as possible, and consumers, who really only want to see the content they specifically requested and signed up for but often aren’t invested enough to go hunt down your unsubscribe link (or worse, they click to unsubscribe, but little do they know, they’re only unsubscribing from that specific list, not from all email from that company). For many people, it’s easier to delete an email, shuffle it off to a random folder, or ignore it.
In today’s post, I’ll be highlighting some recent (and not-so-recent, but neat) things I’ve stumbled across, and providing some tips for how you can avoid being caught in the crosshairs.
Plus Addressing in Gmail
First, and foremost, there’s a neat trick with Gmail specifically that will ignore everything after a + sign in your email address, but will still send the email to you. Meaning, I can sign up for a form with [email protected], set up a filter in my gmail to look for +spam, and any time anyone sends to that address it’ll go straight to the trash. The benefit of having your prospects do this is that it’s crystal clear they’re just not interested in receiving your email. It’s also super easy to look out for in Pardot — you’d just need to set up an automation rule that checks to see if an email address contains +spam, then set them to be marked as Do Not Email. That way, you don’t have to waste time, energy, and database space with someone who has clearly told you they’re just not interested in what you’re sending them.
One of the most interesting apps I’ve stumbled across is wrte.io. It’s essentially a paywall for people who want to send you email. You sign up, get an @wrte.io email address and can decide how much you want to charge someone else to send you an email. That charge can either go to charity or get sent to your Stripe account. It’s definitely an interesting solution to an age-old problem, and might just be the way to stop unwanted email before it ever hits your inbox. Again, this is another way prospects are telling you in no uncertain terms that they just don’t want your email. Add to that automation rule to see if an email address contains @wrte.io, and just mark them as Do Not Email.
Microsoft’s Clutter Tool
My Outlook inbox just recently implemented Microsoft’s Clutter tool, which is fairly similar to Gmail’s Promotions tab. I’ve got to say, as someone who gets a LOT of email on multiple different email accounts, I love it. The time it took to implement and start learning what emails I like (which, yes, is a little creepy) was super short, and has saved me a good bit of time deleting emails I just don’t care about. So, awesome, good for me, but bad for you if you’re trying to send me email. The key here though is that I trained Clutter —and continue to train Clutter — on what I want and do not want. It’s not a perfect system, but it means you really do need to focus on creating relevant, useful content that I’m actually going to be interested in. It’s more important than ever to segment your database based on all of your available information, and be sure to ask me what I’m interested in!
Finally, I’ve made it pretty clear that nothing annoys me (and your prospects) quite like not being able to find your unsubscribe link as quickly as possible. Unroll.me does a fantastic job of figuring out how to unsubscribe from whatever email happens to be in my inbox at the time, and removes me from those lists with a few simple clicks. Again, this tool really helps drive home the point that your marketing should really be focused on sending relevant, useful content that I won’t want to opt out of. Email marketing is rapidly becoming a game of personalization, and batch and blast is quite clearly dying out.
It’s important to make sure you are paying close attention to your database and are doing everything you can to segment out your prospects that just don’t care. Get ahead of the curve by writing relevant, useful content that your prospects simply cannot ignore!
Have you stumbled across any neat inbox apps? Tweet to me @holobachgirl and let me know what I’m missing out on!