Raise your hand if you get a lot of spam in your inbox every day. I know I do and I’m sure you do, too. Now, if you’re a business owner, I’m sure you use email to communicate with your customers and subscribers. But your stuff isn’t spam, right? Just everyone else’s, but definitely not yours!
We all feel this way. I spoke at a conference in Vancouver last month and someone asked me, “how do you know if you’re spamming?” It took me a couple of seconds to think about the right answer, and finally this is what I said: “Think about the context in which your subscribers and customers gave you their contact information.” You see, it’s all about expectations. If I sign up to get your weekly newsletter, I expect one email a week with your newsletter. Nothing else, nothing more. Let me give you a few examples.

  • If someone buys something from you, don’t assume they’re interested in getting your weekly specials. Ask them.
  • If you’re planning to increase the frequency of your emails, let your subscribers know so they know what to expect.
  • If you give away a free ebook, report or video, and your plan is to give them away in exchange for an email address so you can follow up with your prospects, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. Just make sure you are upfront with your prospects about what they can expect.
  • Don’t automatically put people in email lists that they didn’t request to be in. If you want to do that, ask them first and let them know what they can expect (how often you’re planning on communicating and what kind of communication you plan on sending.)

It’s all about setting the right expectations and fulfilling your promises. Please share this article on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or by email so we can build a better world (with less spam).