Creepy Email Marketing

creepy1When you are communicating to your customers I would advise to avoid the ‘creepy triggers’.  

All marketers love the LTV metric and I need not go into all the ways it is better to keep a customer than have to gain a new one.  

I use many online SaaS (software as a service) tools to do my job.  Some I love, some I don’t.  They all reach out with emails about how to best use their tools/services.  Some focus on case examples of other customers hoping it will inspire me to use their tool more.  Some focus on the company’s philanthropic efforts so I feel that by being a customer I am also making the world a better place.  The past two examples are what I call 2015 brand normal.  There isn’t anything in their tactic that is bad or pushing the envelope or trying to be edgy.  They are using current norms to communicate their value to customers.   The creepy one came in this week. I get an email from a creative service I use.  In the email the person says “I noticed you recently created a design in XXXX but never got a chance to share/download it. We are wondering why?”.  I understand that when I am using an online service the company that is hosting it can tell what I have been doing.  But we don’t talk about it.  It is that big brother, matrix style observation we both know is going on.  It is like an unspoken do not ask, do not tell.  The service is one I use to create many concepts and drafts before I complete one and download it – so the one in question was nothing out my normal pattern of usage so why the email?  What purpose did it serve their brand?  I am already a customer and have been using the tool weekly for over a year.  As Scott Stratten said in one of his earlier talks, “There is no such thing as a neutral brand interaction. You either improve or hurt it.”  This was definitely a hurt moment.  Will it change my recommendation of the tool to friends?  No, but friends that work in sensitive industries (banking, pharma) – yes it will.  


Today is the Day of Betas

Today seems to be the day of the betas.  For those of us that enjoy playing with the newest versions of software today is a fun day if you are also a mac user.  We got three free betas that have been released for our weekend tinkering.

beta1. Microsoft Office:  Office 2016 has been released to subscribers.  If you want the Windows Version click here.  Office365 users CLICK HERE to login and get your copy of office 2106 for mac.


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2. Then there is the new OS-X version El Capitan.  You can read a little about it here @ Engadget.  Lot’s of new features and of course there is the core apps that are also updated including Safari and Mail.


Screen Shot 2015-07-10 at 3.41.46 PM3. Lastly there is IOS-9 which promises faster apps, better battery management, handoff, CarPlay (unless you have a new car system this is pointless for now).


All three of these should make for a weekend of new glitches :-).


6 examples of Squirrel Marketing Strategy


Run, Run, Run, grab a nut here – burry a nut there.  Squirrels run all over grabbing a nut where they can find them.  And you know what?  It kinda works.  You can run all over your market doing a little here and a little there and it will kinda work.  In 2015 there are so many potential customers, so many methods to reach people that if you run around like a squirrel the odds are good that you are going to get a nut.  If you take enough shots in the dark you are going to hit something.
Some examples of squirrel marketing are:
  1. starting a blog and not developing a content plan
  2. creating a Facebook page and not having an audience plan, creating one post that no-one sees and then judging the platform
  3. creating a twitter account, using a hash tag once and wondering why your customers don’t use it
  4. putting a QR code on anything (buy the book)
  5. creating a landing page and not having any audience generation or conversion systems in place
  6. going to one meet-up in your market/space and trying to sell the entire room your product/service
The two big, huge problems with this are; 1. you can’t scale it and 2. you don’t have measures in place to tell you what is and is not working.  Marketing like a squirrel is different than testing channels to see which fits best.  I am not saying that you shouldn’t try new things and some of the new things that you try are not going to be right for your brand…  but you should clean up your digital garbage when you are done.  Sometimes not cleaning up can create a big brand oops.  Just last week there was a story on how a QR code on Heinz ketchup now directs to a hardcore porn site.  heinz bad  (Source:
If you are going to test a channel, then fully test it.  Understand why you are exploring, Plan what you are going to do and how you are going to measure.  Then if it works, well, rock it.  If it doesn’t work then break down your test, clean up and remove everything so that you are not leaving brand clutter around the internet.

Why Don’t I See Any Case Studies On Your Website?


I say it all the time. People buy things from people they 1. Know 2. Like and 3. Trust. If you have a case study put it up! It doesn’t have to be the best in the world but it has to show why it is good to work with or buy your product. It doesn’t have to be a perfect best in the world example – be real, be honest, be you. Let your uniqueness come through in the writing.

Originally posted on ContentBoost:

I’ve visited your Web page. I’ve read your products and service descriptions, analyzed your “About” section and scanned your blog.  Unfortunately, there’s something missing. There are no case studies detailing clear-cut examples of how your company has directly helped any of your customers.

shutterstock_137423564As a result of this shortcoming, I’m left scratching my head wondering why this is (as I head to Google and start searching for competitors who can show me clear-cut evidence their products and services can produce the strong results they claim).

The good news is that your business is not alone in its lack of case studies. This is a problem I see all of the time on both B2B and B2C websites. It’s puzzling, too, considering that customer case studies and success stories are the third most influential type of asset in the purchasing process for customers in both large enterprises and small businesses. Case…

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Show you care by going Native in Marketing

social-network-puzzleOne of my favorite one liners is from @unmarketing, “it’s like sending a mannequin to a networking event”.  That is what we are doing when we create social content and then spray the same post in every channel.  I am surprised at the volume of marketing spend and effort that goes into NOT engaging with an audience.  Social allows marketers to get closer to their audience than ever.

No one joins a social network to hear from your brand.  Think about it, when you create an account on a social site, what drove you there?  Why did you join?  Was it because you had a deep desire to see the ad that Ford created?  Users join social networks for many reasons and when you talk to People you will find that many have ONE network that they use most.  Some have two, and then wackos like me have 30.  Want to do some fun social research, talk to your market about the social networks people use.  Really listen and you will hear the aspects of the network that they value.

Not all Social Media is created equal.  Facebook is very different from Twitter and LinkedIn is not the same as Instagram.  Heck, Periscope isn’t the same as Meerkat.  They are all different and that is the point.  Each social ecosystem has its own way of sharing information.

There is no such thing as a neutral brand interaction.  Every time your brand is seen, touched, interacted with, the brand impression is either positively or negatively impacted.  Use the native tool to engage with the selected network to avoid a social media faux pas.  For example, if you are going to post on Facebook.  Follow their rules for posting, use links appropriately and images within guidelines.  Don’t have your Facebook post automatically tweet your post.  Why, because your tweet will look stupid.  It will not follow the social norms for twitter.  If you don’t care enough about your content to make sure that it looks (and functions properly) why, why, why should your audience?  The same goes for all other social media networks you are using for your brand.  By going native, you are communicating to the audiences system one level that you care about them, their choices, their preferred means of absorbing information.  That my friends is good marketing.


The latest Brand Locking

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For Consumers

The big brands have a new tool to lock consumers to their brand.  The Amazon dash button uses the Amazon one click ordering to ship you more of a specific brand.  Place the little button by where you keep paper towels.  When you are running low, push the button and an amazon order is placed.  Right now the program is by invitation only for Amazon Prime members.

For Marketers

What does this mean for marketers.  Well if you are not with one of the big brands it is going to mean that your challenge with amazon as a channel just got harder.  Fear not, there are other ways to grow your brand in the space.  One example is the awesome team over at the dollar shave club.

For Hackers

This is going to be fun.  I wonder how long it is going to take someone to crack this device and use it as a remote for Raspberry Pi?  Shout out to Mark @ happen street.  I am sure he will be among the first to crack it.

We will be Weightless on January 4th, 2015 an old hoax gets new life

Below is a link from my facebook feed.  Sure there is lots of crap in my feed and most of the ads are misleading BS.  This one sounded familiar and you know me, I try not to be swayed by my cognitive biases – and this one hit the ‘mere-exposure effect‘.

January 4th, 2015 at 9:47am PST the entire Earth will be weightless for 5 minutes.  Wait – because of Pluto?  Yep – the article claims that little no-longer-a-planet, Pluto will be the cause.  Of course a quick BS-Check on Google, Bing, Snopes will tell you that this hoax has been around since the 70s.  According to Snopes it was 1976, “took place in 1976, when British astronomer Patrick Moore informed a radio audience that the movement of two planets would result in an upward gravitational pull which would make people on Earth lighter at precisely 9:47 a.m. that day.”

What I find interesting is that Buzz Live’s page on this has over 616,000 shares on Facebook and 23,521 ReTweets without mentioning that it is untrue.  Somewhere on the page should be just a little mention that this is a joke.