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Dear Vendors: How to Lose this Customer in 10 Ways

Either marketers aren’t coming up with clever and creative campaigns, sales people no longer care about people, or those sales people aren't human after all—who knows. But remember when networking events mattered, swag bag drop-offs were a big hit and wait...what happened to handwritten cards or even just a phone call? 

I get more than 50+ work emails a day (I repeat, 50+ emails per day) from various vendors and a few of those also reach out to me via LinkedIn. If I read all the emails just from vendors, I’m taking approximately 1-2 minutes per email to open, read and most likely, delete them. To start, that’s over one hour of out of my day. If I respond out of courtesy, go ahead and tack on another minute or two per email. You do the math here—I’m clearly wasting a whole lot of time on vendor emails.

If you’re contacting me to sell something, I get it and I respect that you’re working to secure new business. If you want to get past the awkward first step and put me on your opportunity list, I suggest treating this as if you are trying to woo me or consider being dumped.

Here are the 10 ways to lose this customer:

  1. You had me at “Hey!” ​​I don’t know you so stop acting as if we met and we're longtime friends. Unless we're friends, hay (hey) is for horses, not for emails.

  2. It's always about you. One of my all-time faves (they even teach this in PR classes on subject lines to avoid with the media). "Did you see my email”. Yeah, I probably scanned over the subject line along with the other emails just like yours. How about adding something that’s unique and useful to ME, not you. 

  3. Let’s talk. Maybe. Is your product and/or service relevant to me and our company?

  4. You don’t listen to me. When I ask for information don’t send gibberish excuses why you can’t deliver. Just tell me what I want to hear and answer my questions honestly. If we're not a good fit, so be it. 

  5. You’re so bossy. It's one thing to be insistent and quite another to be overly aggressive. If I said no the first time, then it’s likely I’ll say no again in one or two weeks.

  6. You don’t know me. Dear Franky: Um, you spelled my name wrong. You're so getting dumped.

  7. Who are you talking to. “If you don’t manage HR, can you tell me who does?”. Not only do I want to immediately dump you, I want to call you out. How about doing your homework on the company and our people?

  8. What did you say to me.  Why are you throwing out fancy words? We just met. I'm human so tell me what you do in layman's terms. 

  9. I need some time to think. Respect my time and priorities. If I asked to be contacted in two weeks, then contact me in two weeks and not 5 days earlier. 

  10. and the winner is... I have sent you a few emails, I am following up on my email, did you have a chance to review last email, I’m not sure if you’ve received my previous email. This is my 4th time reaching out (what happened to 3 strikes you're out?). You're officially a Stage 4 Clinger.

It’s time we bring back personalization with creative, quirky and clever ways to pique interest from customers. Emails can be tricky if you're wanting to get my full attention. If you plan on rolling the dice and send an email,  do it with genuine intent by doing your research and at the very least, be sure to spell my name correctly.

Author: Frankie Cervantes


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