Be more effective: Mail out blunders to avoid

By Debbie Mayo-Smith

Don't make this horrendous marketing blunder ...

You open your mailbox. There's a marketing mail-out from a firm looking to do business with you. The opening line from the main paragraph says something like, "We've sent you our corporate profile (and lots of blah, blah, blah)", plus these six bullet points:

  • Learn more about us and our culture.

  • See what we do for our clients and what they think about us.

  • Understand the thinking behind the company.

  • Hear what our staff have to say about us.

  • Connect to hot links that take you to the quick quotes.

  • Discover what makes us so different.

Whoever put this together, along with whoever approved it, should be shot. Why?

The thing is, the potential customer really doesn't care about the company's culture, or about staff patting themselves on the back.

I have very little spare time so the only inducement that would get me to view it is, what is in it for me and can they solve my problems?

Where is the part about how I'll save time, money and how I'll impress my clients?

Over the next few months, before you print anything, before you write your next newsletter, before you send anything out - put your customers' shoes on. Check the following:

  • Have you eliminated the "I's" and "we's"?

  • Is it chock-full of benefits to the recipients?

  • Does it glorify you and if so, will they care?

Debbie Mayo-Smith works with businesses that want more effective staff. For more free tips see: or email

Conquer Your Email Overload, by Debbie Mayo-Smith, Penguin, $34.99.

- Hamilton News

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