Officially, I’ve been a marketer for most of my professional career. Which is tough to say, because I abhor most marketing. The way I sleep at night is by sticking to and advocating for what I consider to be ethical marketing. That means, only tracking with consent, only tracking what I need, and focusing on using data to improve the quality of what I produce instead of selling something to you in increasingly finer granuality.
For me, ethical marketing also means staying off of platforms that don’t respect these rights. I deactivated my Facebook account over a year ago. For me, I prefer email marketing. The relationship is clear cut, between you and me. No third party owns the platform. In my day job, I try to do it right. I let you opt in, and if you later opt out, I respect that.
But I’m not an email marketing expert. I do try to pay attention to what other organizations do with their email lists, but that’s a little hard, because I intentionally opt-out of most brands and corporate email campaigns in my personal life. So when I do see some that I like, I’ll try to make a note of them here.
Recently I ordered a poster for my wife’s birthday. Here are the emails I got from the vendor.
- Thanks for letting us add you to our email list, here’s 10% off.
- Your order is confirmed
- Did you know if you bought just a little more you’d get free shipping? Order more in the next six hours and we’ll wave the shipping on both orders with this code.
- Your order is ready and being shipped, here’s the invoice and where to track it.
- Hey did you know about our rewards program?
- We’ve got a new poster, it’s 20% off for you
- We’re making another poster, here’s a sneak peek.
- Here’s a related product we offer for hanging posters that you can use with your new poster.
- Our new poster is here! Here are random facts about it and a discount code.
All of these felt okay to me. Not obnoxious, not “here’s our catalog, please buy more,” not creepy personalized. Maybe people wouldn’t hate marketing and marketers so much if we all held ourselves to higher ethical standards, and focused on what customers want instead of what we want.