Ever notice how everyone seems to hate Spam, (and I don’t mean the meat in a can)? Every week we get a stack of paper at our doors. We all look forward to the weekly fliers to see what sales are running this week. But get an advertisement in your email, something that costs us nothing & is more environmental, and we’re all up-in-arms.
We complain that our spam traps aren’t working properly, we complain of the waste of time, and we’ve gone as far as passing laws against Spam. Let’s not forget that this is something that costs us nothing to receive, and nothing to delete. You can even select several at a time and hit the delete button but once. I for one, much prefer Spam to the constant fliers in my mailbox or hanging on my door. I also prefer it to the phone calls I receive as I’m finishing my dinner.
I actually read the majority of Spam I receive. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a busy person and on days where I don’t have 5 minutes to spare, I simply delete them (start fresh tomorrow). I read them because they can be informative to a product I didn’t know existed. If the product is of interest, I will do further research, and my purchase may not be from the Spam, but it alerted me to something I didn’t know was available. I didn’t have to go looking for it, it came to me, and as a busy person, that actually saved me time.
Running my business, I see another side to Spam as well. Marketed to the correct audience, it can be an inexpensive way to for small companies to market themselves. Not everyone can afford to take out one page ads in popular magazines, newspapers, TV commercials, and billboards. For a small business, sending emails, to the correct people, can be time consuming, but cost saving. Is this still Spam? Maybe, maybe not.
Then there’s the social & environmental factors. The alternative to Spam, which is really email marketing with a bad connotation, is those 7pm phone calls, 15 minutes of commercials per hour of TV, or a pile of fliers at your door. If I’m actually finished my day at 7pm, I don’t want to be marketed to, send me an email and I’ll read it when I have time. I’ve lost interest in most TV because I can’t deal with the amount of commercials (which play louder than whatever you’re watching). Most local newspapers have become mostly news wrapped in advertising. As for the stack of paper at my door, if I can even get to it before my children tear it to pieces, it has to (SHOULD BE) be recycled in some form. Spam is all of this rolled into one, except that within seconds you can get rid of it.
Moral of the story: Read your Spam, or don’t and delete it without a second thought. It costs nothing and harmed no one to do either. I for one will gladly give you my email (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you promise not to call me or waste paper on my account.