Your customers couldn’t care less about your new design or whether your dog just had kittens
“Hi Gerry,” the Air New Zealand marketing e-mail started off. I remember many years ago when I was a young employee at a company that had just bought its first computer. We got this word processor with an amazing feature called mail merge. We could now send lots of automated individual letters to people who owed us money. The letters went something like this:
We sat around and marveled at the ability to produce so many letters automatically and how people would feel that they were receiving individually penned missives. Those letters worked so well.
I don’t think it works quite as well today. When I receive an automated marketing e-mail addressing me by my first name, I don’t go weak at the knees: “Oh, the software knows my first name! It knows my name!” Has anyone tested to see whether these so-called personalization techniques are more likely to alienate a customer than impress them?
Anyway, back to the Air New Zealand marketing e-mail that I don’t remember signing up for. (I’ve had pretty good experiences flying with Air New Zealand by the way.)