Don’t Patronize People When They Unsubscribe From Your Newsletter

Remember back in the day (like 2005) when press releases were the cool SEO fad? “Send out a press release with our service and get thousands of links instantly!” Thing was, all of those links were from other press release sites and there really weren’t any real people reading or using those sites, so Google quickly learned to de-value those links.

Anyway, twice in the past week I’ve received emails from a site called widePR.com. As far as I can recall, I’ve never heard of widePR.com. One email was sent to my SportsLizard email, the other to my iPrioritize. Now, I’ve had those addresses since 2004 and 2006 respectively so it’s certainly possible that I signed up for some other PR newsletter years ago and that company was bought out or merged into widePR. I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt that I was on their list legitimately somehow. So instead of marking the newsletter as SPAM, I clicked to unsubscribe, and was greeted with this list of “questions”:

widepr unsubscribe

Really?

I first had to click “yes” and then that text was replaced with “You are now unsubscribed”.

By law you’re required to provide an unsubscribe link in your emails. Making people go through that exercise is completely demeaning and unnecessary. It’s as if to say “you are soooo stupid for not realizing how awesome and useful our service is”. Listen, if someone has clicked to unsubscribe that means that they don’t want your newsletter anymore. It’s usually nothing personal. Many times people are still fans of your site or service but just don’t want the newsletter for one reason or another. It’s not good business to make condescending comments to them. It is OK to politely ask why they are unsubscribing and/or to thank them for trying out your site/service, both of which are things we do. Primarily though, the thing you should be doing is just confirming that they are unsubscribed and will not be receiving your email any more.

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