Darryl Stewart
By Darryl Stewart

How to get Medicine Hat people to unsubscribe in record time

By Darryl Stewart, Head of the Herd

Day three of our “Why not Medicine Hat?” campaign started full of promise:

  • We had researched almost 100 small business people in Medicine Hat.
  • We had crafted a 30 second survey to help up figure out how to best serve Medicine Hat.
  • We had secured a special gift for each person who took the survey and written a wonderful email explaining what we are up to.

We felt we would not upset anyone with the offer of a bestselling book in return for a 30 second survey.  The worst that could happen is that we would be ignored.  The best is that we would get to understand Medicine Hat people and businesses a little better and start a few real conversations.

Basically the worst happened.  We were totally ignored.  We also saw the highest unsubscribe rate we have ever had on an email campaign and one of the lowest open rates ever.  At first we were stunned. Had we really missed the mark that bad?

The post mortem revealed some glaring errors in our approach.  Basically, we interrupted a bunch of busy business people with what appeared to be a spam email at the busiest time in the business day.  We got exactly what we deserved!

Why write about our mistake?  We are all about helping other businesses and organizations.  If our lesson helps someone else, then something good came out of this.

As far as Medicine Hat, there is some good news.  The personal touch works much better.  If we take the time to seek people out, listen to their needs and have a real conversation, we get to meet some really cool people, in a really cool place.  More on that in future posts.

Anyone else want to share a marketing mistake?

  1. sure! I had these really cool waterbottles printed with my company’s logo and website. They were the hit of the trade show and everyone heard my schpiel (?). It was great, up until the very last person taking the very last water bottle pointed out the spelling mistake in my website.