DM: We broke your email. [Exit, pursued by a bear]

23Apr08

I’ve blogged elsewhere about the bad taste that email is leaving in our collective mouths, so I find it odd that Brand Republic is conceding so easily the news that 150bn emails are deleted without being read every year.

Yes spam emails are better for the environment than direct marketing (DM), and there are more laborious things in the world than deleting junk-mail, but that’s not the gripe I have. The issue is that email as a communications platform is broken, ’tis kaput. The argument that we should “invest in the medium more. Iron out the wrinkles, improve the security and therefore the confidence of users” doesn’t stick simply because we are already choosing other forms of communication over email, our confidence in email is lost beyond ironing out wrinkles.

I suppose that as it’s written from a DM point of view, Hugh Bessant’s post is still stuck in the mindset that communication channels are fair game for marketers. However, while its true that for any form of social media to make money, there’s got to be some commercial involvement, the days of unsolicited marketing are over, and I’m tempted, nay compelled, to say that email marketing has played a key role in its demise.

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