I encourage authors to use e-mail as one of the most powerful tools in their marketing arsenal.
But with great power comes great responsibility, right?
One of the quickest ways to turn a potential reader (or influencer!) into an enemy is to send an unsolicited message via e-mail or a social network.
Here are 4 of the biggest e-mail sins.
- Sending a regular mass e-mail to people who did not sign up to receive your messages. This even goes for content-based messages or links—something you might think is innocuous. It is not.
- Sending a mass e-mail to your entire address book, or to every e-mail address you’ve harvested from your Facebook or LinkedIn contacts. It’s tempting to say, “Just this ONE time.” If the message is that important to you, take time to send a personalized e-mail to each person, or select a few influencers to contact instead. Don’t be lazy.
- Sending a regular mass e-mail from your personal e-mail account so people have no way to unsubscribe. The most basic courtesy you can offer is an automated unsubscribe function. That means people should NOT have to respond personally and ask to be removed. MailChimp is a free e-mail newsletter service with automated unsubscribe functionality.
- Sending mass messages via Facebook or LinkedIn. It’s just as bad as doing it via e-mail.
It might be perfectly fine to mass e-mail people who know you and love you (e.g., close family and friends), but if you’re doing it with people you don’t correspond with casually or typically, and they didn’t opt-in, that’s called spam, and you should stop.