We can all agree that the killing of Cecil the Lion has been a disastrous event. Because of the foolish actions of a few, this unnecessary chain of events will have tremendous ripple effects on the lives and livelihoods of many.
But, apparently, not everyone got the memo. In my spam today, I received this gem:
And the email goes something like this:
I actually would like this to be a phishing scam, because I don’t want to think that someone would send this message out with this kind of timing. I fear they did though. I checked the links for malware and phishing threats, and it actually checked out.
So, assuming it is for real, let’s use this as a teachable moment in messaging and email marketing (besides, obviously, don’t spam).
Relevance and Timeliness in Social Media and Email Marketing
On the topic of “don’t spam,” keeping your message relevant for your audience is the key takeaway. Our sample email here was purely spam to a mass, unqualified list.
From a broader perspective, this email reminds me of a presentation by a social media marketing thought leader who warned against scheduling content release. Her reasoning was that a friendly – or at least an appropriate – environment and context can’t always be guaranteed.
At the very least, it requires that you know:
- Generally what is going on in the world.
- What messages are being communicated.
- When those messages are being communicated.
Otherwise, you run the risk of making the wrong statement at the wrong time.
The Right Message at the Right Time
You can however communicate the right message at the right time.
Not all safari trips are hunting trips of course. On the surface, our example here does not seem to be advertising trips for hunting. But, the first thought I had while scanning the subject line was “Cecil the Lion,” because that’s in the news right now. Not good. If this business was working with the right marketer, they would leverage the opportunity and duty to differentiate their work plus highlight the enjoyment of African wildlife’s beauty. At the appropriate time.
Even if this is a hunting safari business, they could use this opportunity to gain visibility on responsible practices in hunting. They could even help make the case for the positive impacts responsible hunting practices can have in a habitat or ecosystem. They would then begin to differentiate their business from others in the hunting tourism industry. Again, at the appropriate time.
Messages in support of big game hunting won’t be popular with everyone. But, you aren’t always trying to convince everyone – you want to speak with those who are interested in engaging with you in a specific way. In other words, by engagement, I don’t mean hate mail or death threats.
Even during what might seem the worst possible moments, you can – and perhaps even should – play a part in a healthy dialogue that often needs to happen.
And yes, there is a difference between email marketing and spamming.
What current events impact your business’ blogging or social media – for good or bad? Need help sorting it all out? I want to hear from you. Please reach out.