Email Marketing Terminology Tripped Me Up

By John Aberle | Business Lifestyle

Feb 18
Two people talking

Are you hearing what I'm meaning?

It seems with Internet marketing there is always something to learn. Earlier this week I got another of those lessons. I was feeling really good about finishing my 8th lesson of the 9 lessons I’m giving people who join my community by opting onto mailing list. Then I noticed that not everyone on my list had received all of the lessons. And some lessons seemed to be missing – bummer.

So I started to make up the missing lessons. In the course of trying to create an autoresponder campaign to ensure this wouldn’t happen again, I discovered my error. I forgot that MailChimp sets up campaigns and autoresponder emails under separate tabs. Other than when the get sent, everything about setting up an autoresponder email and a campaign email is the same. I found that most of my lessons I had, in fact, already set up on the autoresponder, having only missed #7.

The lesson – double check your terminology

So what was the lesson here? It was a reminder of the problem with communications that all salespeople and marketers experience with customers: terminology. We often use terms, expressions, and words to mean slightly different things. This is why it’s so important to ask how people mean what they just said and to periodically during the conversation repeat back in your own words what you heard or read.

In this Internet marketing experience of mine today, I learned that MailChimp uses “Campaign” for what others call blast or broadcast. I actually like MailChimp’s term better than “blast,” which has a very war-like and unfriendly sound. To me, campaign applied to any marketing effort so I thought it covered both emails sent out “all at once” and autoresponder emails, which go out individually based on time since some event, like joining my community. I have no problem with MailChimp’s use of campaign to mean a broadcast to everyone. It merely meant a learning curve for me and a lesson I hope to recall the next time I decide to send an email to my community.

So while email marketing terminology tripped me up briefly, it was a great reminder of the importance of making the effort to be sure we are communicating in our marketplaces. Words and phrases have different meanings depending on our experiences. Salespeople have it slightly easier than marketers because they can ask their prospects what they meant and state it back to ensure they understand each other correctly. Marketers will have to take the extra step of contacting customers and prospects to talk with them to see if their product or service messages are coming across as what they mean for them to say. The effort is worth is it because you will find you’ve improved the level of trust with your potential customers. And trust means long term relationships, helping customers buy, and enjoying sales as fun, fulfilling, and mutually rewarding.


About the Author

My first Kindle eBook, How Relationship Selling Rewards Small Businesses, went live on April 24, 2012. I've lived a lifetime of service and spiritual search so it's natural for me to incorporate these attitudes into my work. I believe that selling and marketing are spiritual service when done with a heart-centered, relationship selling approach. All of business success comes down to building strong relationships.