Mountain Warehouse Demonstrates How Not to Communicate With Customers

Recently a friend of mine forwarded on details of a sale at Mountain Warehouse.

Having found some items I wanted, I placed an order.

Normally, I opt out of any marketing.  But I thought it might be useful to know if they had another sale so I left the box for special offers ticked.

Did I Hear From Them?

I certainly did … and far more often than I had hoped.

In fact they managed to email me no less than 11 times in 3 weeks – typically a message once every other day and sometimes on consecutive days.

It did not take long before I got fed up with their excessive communications, so I deleted the email address I had given them.

Were Their Emails Effective?

It depends what their aim was…

If what they wanted to do was to flood my Inbox with emails faster than I had time to read them, put me off from being on their mailing list and lose the ability to communicate with me … then they succeeded.

If their intention was to communicate effectively with me as a customer and tempt me into making further purchases … then they failed miserably.

It’s Not Just Mountain Warehouse

Mountain Warehouse is not the only company to completely misjudge their email advertising campaign.  Earlier this year I reported that Millets were doing an even worse job of targeting customers with an email just about every day.

And this sort of email abuse is not restricted to outdoor clothing companies.  I deleted an email address I had given B&Q last year for the same reason.

Time Companies Learned To Make Good Use of Email

Whilst it is possible there are some people out there who eagerly look forward to their daily email with the latest offers from their favourite companies, it is unlikely that the average shopper welcomes this – or has time to read through each email.

It makes you wonder who on earth in some corporate office at the head of these companies is so detached from reality that they think this is an effective way of communicating with their customers.

By contrast, an occasional and well-worded email to draw attention to a sale or a genuine special offer is much more likely to be welcomed by customers and may even get them buying online or heading down to their nearest store in the hope of snapping up a bargain.

A Temporary Email Address Can Help You Prevent This

Whether I am buying goods from a company I have not used before, signing a petition or giving out an email address for some other reason, I always have a temporary email address on the go.

This means that I can easily stop companies that excessively email in this way … or worse, pass my email address – without my consent – to third parties so spam starts coming in on the account.

As soon as I get a significant number of unwanted emails I simply delete the email address and create a new temporary email address.

Where companies behave sensibly and I do want to remain on their mailing list, I swap them to a permanent email address.  This keeps the spam away and means that my Inbox remains manageable and uncluttered.