Published in Marketing on Wednesday, July 11th, 2007
A couple of weeks ago a friend of mine meticulously prepared a newsletter and sent it out to their subscribers. I was one of those subscribers, and imagine my surprise when in my inbox I received an e-mail stating Dear NAME, have you seen our lastest additions?
I called him up to mention the error, and he explained to me that he had noticed the error and managed to stop the delivery before too much damage was done. No problem. But hours later, he called me stating that he felt really bad, and wanted to try something.
His idea was to send out the newsletter again, but this time with an apology in the subject line and a short, human message at the top of the newsletter:
Sorry I got your name wrong in the last email. I'm having one of those days!
Can we put it down to being so excited about our lastest additions? We'd really like you to see what's on offer too.
Here's the message again in case you missed it last time. I'm going for a coffee :)
With many people noticing the lack of a human touch in a lot of marketing efforts these days, I'm not surprised that this little human touch gained traction.
These newsletters usually get decent click thrus and conversions, but rarely do the recipients reply directly to the e-mail; perhaps this is because they lack this human touch. In this case the reply rate to the newsletter was 1000% the normal rate (one person played the cynic and replied stating that he thought they were faking the whole incident).
In the end it worked; the mistake turned into an opportunity. Forgetting the normal click-thrus and conversions, this person now had begun a conversation with these potential clients who replied to the e-mail, and he probably appeared to those people more human than his competition.
Now the trick will be to convey that same feeling without making a mistake :-)
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