Oprah & Deepak’s email marketing mistake

Do you use email marketing for your business? It’s a fantastic way to connect with your customers, because they’ve specifically asked you to send them information by signing up to your mailing list.

I subscribe to a small handful of lists because I enjoy the content. Every now and then, though, an email will come through that I either didn’t subscribe to, or one that surprises me, like this one did:

See that subject line? It was supposed to be a personalized message, but the merge code didn’t work, so all I see is [First Name]. It’s kind of funny, but embarrassing for the sender.

Why did it surprise me? Because I would never expect this type of mistake from a big company. I mean, it’s Oprah and Deepak – come on, now.

Still, we are all human and mistakes happen, right?

This is one reason why I stopped personalizing emails. I also know that not everyone provides their real name when signing up for a list, so I don’t want to be sending out an email with “Divalicious” in the subject line.

Even if you don’t send personalized emails, it’s a good idea to scan your list of subscribers every now and then and fix little things like capitalization inconsistencies and incorrect entries. For example, if your optin form asks for “Name”, some people will enter just their first name and others will enter their first and last name. You can easily fix that type of thing. You may want to personalize a message in the future, so you might as well keep the list clean.

But whatever you do, before you send to your entire list, send out a test email first to yourself and at least one other person, to be sure everything is working as intended. A few minutes can potentially save you a big headache!

Got a funny email marketing story to share? Share it in the comments.