We All Hate Spam and Cold-Calling… Until We Don’t

Sales Hook

On May 15th, I received an unsolicited email (aka SPAM) from an agency in Atlanta telling me what an explainer video was. I knew what it was, we've written about explainer videos extensively and published quite a few of our own. I didn't respond to the email.  A week later, I get another email with a similar note. A week later, another one. I don't respond to either. Four emails that I didn't respond to or even click a link on.

We started work with a new client and have solidified their branding requirements for some collateral we're redesigning. One of the future projects that we know we're going to tackle is an explainer video for them. So, as I'm responding to some feedback on the new collateral we designed, I receive yet another email from the explainer video company.

There were no unsubscribe links in the email, nor was their any powered by logos… but I'm quite certain he was utilizing a sales automation tool. The sales representative inserted some links of their latest work in the email and said that they'd like to offer a discount to work with me on the first project. I hover my finger over the example link a couple seconds wondering if it would be great or not… and I clicked.

The destination I clicked on was a fantastic 1-minute explainer video. It was fully animated, had a great soundtrack, and even sound effects mixed in. The speed of it wasn't rushed at all and it was exceptional quality. This may be a deal that I shouldn't pass up so I responded with my new project's information and clicked send.

Within a minute, my phone rang and it was the guy that had sent me an unsolicited message every week. He just called to find out some more details and was excited to see if they could help. He wasn't pushy, wasn't trying to close me, and spent some time learning about my business and our capabilities. We ended the conversation with him promising to follow up with a quote in the morning.

We Hate It… But it Works!

I'm certain I'll be virtually flogged online for being the email marketer that publicly admits to:

  1. Responding to SPAM
  2. Actually doing the unimaginable and clicking a link on the SPAM email.

Ok, you got me. But you know what? This agency may have just found a new client that will provide them with ongoing work in this arena. And I just may have landed an incredible partner that can scale up animation for us at a very reasonable price. If I wind up doing just a few explainer videos for them, the reward was so much more than the risk for both companies.

We all scream and yell about SPAM and cold calls… but we really need to be honest about the effectiveness of them. Marketing is all about product, placement, and price. In this case, the product is what I needed, the placement was timed correctly, and the price was right.

This doesn't mean I'm going to encourage my clients to begin SPAMMING the crap out of people… but I absolutely recognize why businesses do it.

It works.

One comment

  1. 1

    I agree with you. The key here is that the research is important. We have to be diligent in doing that research and understanding our potential buyers. I think often times we get a little grumpy because we may have experienced being marked SPAM and get a little trigger happy to mark others as SPAM. This kind of thing can damage businesses; for a long time. I got a cold email last night from someone trying to sell me on content services, I initially was going to mark it as spam, but I couldn’t bring myself to do it. He had no unsub link, either. I simply pointed that out and said, “no, thanks.” I think we need to recognize the difference between the phishy spam. The ones that say, “take this new supplement,” or “make $1,000 a day, from home”; These are clearly spam, there is no target. I think if a salesperson has done enough research to know that you are in marketing and delivers you an email offering a marketing service, that’s okay. Just be candid and say, “no, thanks” and that will do. Email is not going away, nor cold-calling.

    Great article!

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