How You Can Learn From Spam

How You Can Learn From Spam


Okay, let me start off this article by saying this. I do NOT condone spam. It is an abomination that is destroying email marketing.

Okay, maybe destroying is a harsh word. But it is certainly making email marketing a lot harder than it has to be because of all the safeguards put in place that ultimately end up hurting the legit email marketer more than the spammers. Having said that, you can learn a lot from all the spam that comes into your email box.

For starters, check your spam folder. Thanks to George Sepich for reminding me about this. If an email ends up in your spam folder, that means that the person who sent the email put something in it that caused it to end up there. Read the email, especially the subject. See if you can figure out what caused it to end up where it did. Run it through an online spam checker. It’ll point out all those bad words in it that triggered a high spam score. By doing this, you ultimately figure out what NOT to do.

How You Can Learn From Spam

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But you can learn more than just how to keep your emails out of the spam folder. Sadly, a lot of these spammers have some excellent writing skills. I have actually read some emails that had excellent sales pitches in them. In fact, I’d say that the sales copy was written by a pro. I’ve seen excellent uses of mystery, scarcity and a killer offer at an unreal price. Hey, let’s face it. If spam wasn’t profitable, these guys wouldn’t do it. So some of them MUST know something about marketing. Too bad they don’t use their smarts for good rather than for evil.

Point is, as bad as spam is, and as much as I personally hate it (You should see my in box) you CAN learn something from it. It does serve a rather twisted purpose if you’re a marketer and have the time to go through it all. That’s the problem though. You get so much of it, and so much of it is pure garbage (one line ads) that finding the quality spam (is that an oxy moron?) isn’t so easy to do.

How You Can Learn From Spam


But if you have a few extra minutes, like maybe during your lunch break (if you eat lunch at your PC like I do) go through some of your spam and see if you can’t find something that gives you a few ideas. At the very least, make sure you do a spam check to see why it ended up in your spam box. Then you’ll know, at the very least, what to stay away from doing when you compose your legitimate emails.

For example, some people will spell the word “free” with special characters. Believe it or not, this will trigger off the filters more than if you just left the word free in. There is actually nothing wrong with this word. Problem is, people have been conditioned to believe it’s a bad word, so they don’t use it. I use it all the time and my emails get through with no problem at all.

Yeah, spam sucks…but by at least learning something from it, you can make it suck less.

To YOUR Success,

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