What's wrong with this picture?

Last week I got an newsletter email from Future Shop promoting their latest sale.  (To my American readers – Future Shop is a brand of Best Buy stores in Canada).

Aside from the fact that half the images in the email didn’t load (a sure way in itself to destroy your marketing efficiency), I was more bothered by a much much more idiotic use of the email’s pixel space.

Come Back Daily For … Yeah Right

This newsletter had a format I’m sure you’re familiar with.  It boasted a “deal of the day” and hinted that I should come back daily, over the next 8 days to see what that day’s deal would be

How stupid can they be?

(I don’t mean to pick specifically on Future Shop.  Other companies do this too.  Dell’s 12 Days of Deals comes to mind immediately though I’m sure there are many others.)

I’m sure that like me, most people subscribed to their newsletters receive many emails every day.  The time we spend going over these emails is increasingly short.  That’s why marketers try to optimize open rates (how many people bother opening the email).  Get that?  They’re thrilled if you just opened it, because that’s a huge hurdle.  Then what do they do?  They waste their pixel on telling me to come back again tomorrow to open their email again.  They’re trying to create suspense and anticipation by hiding the next days’ deals, but they’re losing out because nobody cares enough to check again tomorrow.

A better way

Marketers, please pay attention: Instead of trying to create fake anticipation, I have a better plan for you.  In that newsletter, the one I actually bothered to open, tell me what’s going to be on sale every day.  Show me a little calendar view with a picture of a laptop today, a tablet tomorrow and some worthless anti-virus a week from Tuesday.

Now that I know what’s coming, I can mentally flag to come back to your site that day to check out the deal I’m actually interested in.  If you’re deal speaks to me, I’ll be sure to visit your site, even if it’s a few days from now.

Another offender