Friday, August 10, 2007

Opening A Big Old Can Of Spam, PT1

Opening a big old can of SPAM...PT1.

"If spam is an issue, it’s probably because you spend too much time surfing the internet, letting other people steal your email address and pummel you with unwanted messages. The antidote for spam is not just a spam blocker – it’s also the delete button.

Climb down off your high horse, recognize that at least 75% of spam is your own fault, and don’t use it as an excuse to be rude or unresponsive." Jeffrey Gitomer, sales trainer, nationally-recongized speaker, and author of the classic bestseller: LITTLE RED BOOK OF SALES.

by Tammy de Leeuw

Financial Advisors Netzone

Despite the fact that I have sent hundreds of emails advertising this blog site, I have been lucky to have only gotten a couple of negative emails decrying my "spamming." However, those emails were hostile enough to prompt me to address this controversial issue.

For financial services professionals, who are probably the single most spammed professional group in the world, the issue can be a bit tricky. After all, a lot of us want to be marketing savvy ourselves.

As Jeffrey Gitomer points out, those who whine about spam usually bring the situation on themselves. Financial advisors, in their quest for the SURE FIRE SOLUTION TO PUT BUTTS IN THE SEATS, seem to spend an awful lot of time attending "webinars", downloading FREE reports, filling out online forms for booklets, etc.

Perhaps the truly naive believe that such offers are made by some kindly old soul whose mission in life is to help financial professionals become super-successful and popular with seniors. (Uh, yeah... that's why they do it...)

Most of us, however, understand that advertising exists to bring attention to a product or service someone is trying to SELL. When I worked for that company-who-shall-not-be-named, the boss was a big fan of webinars and the attendant spam which was sent out by the thousands to get advisors to sign up.

The agenda for doing such webinars was far from hidden, yet there were always those who whined about the copius amount of email and junk mail they received after they attended.


Did you think my ex-boss-whose-name-shall-not-be-mentioned was doing this out of the kindness of his stone cold heart? He did it so he could get your information and continue to operate within the "window" allowed by law.

Ironically, some of the same people who complained bitterly about spam invading their work emails were the same folks who forked over big bucks to learn how to market (read "send spam and junk mail more effectively") to seniors. Crazy, isn't it?

In this series, I will examine the history of SPAM, why one man's SPAM is another man's treasure, why legitimate advertising is NOT spam, what the CANSPAM law really says, and much more.

I will give you tips and tricks and resources on how to reduce the flow of email and junkmail and also how to not miss offers you actually WANT to receive. Using the miracle of the Internet, you might be able to market your own services without getting tagged as a "spammer."

In the meantime, feel free to send me your SPAM stories. By this I mean- send me your favorite offers, most-hated spam, websites you visited once ten years ago which continue to spam you today, etc. Give me any tips and tricks you have used yourselves to alleviate spam.


1 comment:

ToddV said...


I've never understood why some people get so upset about receiving email solicitations (aka, spam)... They are simply the 21st century version of the things that we've been receiving in our mail boxes since mail boxes were invented... It is especially puzzling that anyone in financial services would complain as we, by definition, are all solicitors of one sort or another...

I mean, seriously, the only reason that we call it spam is because we might not have an immediate need for that specific product/service... But, if we happen to need Viagra, a larger 'member', or a date with a person in a foreign country, the solicitation might actually be of benefit ;-)

This is just the price we pay for living in a free country and those who try to limit free speech in this area may quickly find that their free speech is limited too (in ways they never intended, like not allowing us to prospect to anyone that didn't contact us first)...

If you don't want spam, don't give out your email address to anyone. The easiest way to avoid this entirely is to have one email address that you use to communicate with 'friends' and another that you use to register for stuff on the internet (you can use people like yahoo, aol, msn, etc as they offer 100% free email accounts).