The prize for being subscribed to an email newsletter for 5+ years

When I’m subscribed to an email list for over five years, I feel like I should get a prize; and thus I hesitate when considering unsubscribing.

You know those email newsletters you pass by every week without reading. I bet you sometimes “clean house” and unsubscribe to a bunch of them. But are there some email newsletters you feel bad unsubscribing?

There are some email newsletters related to my industry that give me an unintentional sense of guilt about unsubscribing. It’s like I don’t want the people at that organization to know that I don’t really want their emails anymore. Although I shouldn’t feel too bad, because they should know in their records that I never click on the links in their emails.

In fact, by unsubscribing to emails you never click on, you are helping to increase that companies click-through rate. Less people who don’t click, means they have a higher ratio of people who do click.

Marketo: Still Friends? emailIn fact, Marketo sends out taunting emails with the subject line “Still friends, Matt?” That subject line itself makes me totally want to unsubscribe. Open up the email and there is a photo of a sad pug. Perhaps that sad pug is supposed to make me feel guilty unsubscribing. But I think they are intending the opposite. Marketo, as their name implies, is a company geared for marketers. Any seasoned marketer will see that this pug image is totally a ploy. One so bad, that it is making me unsubscribe.

The opening line of the email says, “It’s been ages, Matt.” Three things about that line makes a reader want to unsubscribe:

  1. It’s been ages. Whenever an acquantaince scolds me with how I haven’t contacted them in a long time, it makes me want to sink my head in the sand and never contact that person again. Here Marketo is making me want to run away from their company. The easy method to run away? Click unsubscribe.
  2. The personalization. So clearly not hand-typed by a real person. Using the person’s name in the salutation may seem like a good idea, but here it’s just layering on the sarcasm.
  3. The period. Coupled with the fact that this sentence is on a line by itself makes it seem like their taunting line is all the more taunting and demeaning.

The rest of the email goes on about being friends, and making them feel sad. Uh, ok? With their over-the-top methods, I think Marketo intentionally wants me to unsubscribe. So I did.

Now if they only offered a prize for me being subscribed to their newsletter seven years, I might consider actually reading and clicking through on their emails.

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