Email Marketing: Why Easy Management and Unsubscribe Options Are Important

By | November 25, 2011

I’m all for active email marketing campaigns. Sending frequent messages and updates to specific clients and customers is an excellent idea. But how many emails are too many? What type of information do your recipients even want?

Any smart business will ask these questions, usually over some type of meeting or conference, and decide then and there what their strategy will be with careful consideration of who their recipients are and what their expectations may be. However, the smartest businesses will go one step further and ask themselves, “Why don’t we just let our recipients answer this for themselves?”

Marketing Management into the Hands of Your Clients

The best marketing campaigns are the ones that your customers thought they wanted in the first place. In the case of email marketing, this means allowing recipients to specify how frequently they would like to receive email updates and even what type of information they would like to receive.

Sure, you can give them a default email marketing campaign if they click to sign up through some quick, piggy-backed registration process (perhaps through a first purchase or promotion details page). But even then, many prospective recipients may be slow to accept marketing emails because they aren’t sure what they are signing up for. The more specific and explicit your offerings and options, the more you’ll be able to promote at least something to your client base.

Marketing Management Should Be Easy

Specifying the frequency and content of marketing emails should not be an arduous process. Ideally, it should not even require registration (unless your clients are already registered anyway); just a simple click from a link at the bottom of every promotional email.

While you should give your recipients a variety of options in your email marketing campaign, it should not appear overly complicated. If there are too many options to click (or even worse, to unclick), they may just unsubscribe entirely. If I had to throw a benchmark out there, I would say offer no more than a total of 5 options in terms of marketing content and frequency that they can choose from.

Why an Easy Unsubscribe Is Important

Let me tell you about the time I tried to unsubscribe from a company that shall remain nameless (while I am still annoyed with them due to this detail, I do not want to call them out due to the chance that they may have updated their email marketing campaign). I decided I was receiving too many emails from them (they wouldn’t let me specify frequency of updates), so I decided to unsubscribe.

As I clicked their unsubscribe link, they sent me to a sign-in page, which was strange because I didn’t recall registering to get on the email circulation. Of course, I couldn’t recall my password, and after a few unsuccessful attempts, I decided just to filter all their emails straight to my trash. Since then, I am still left with a slightly bitter taste in my mouth when thinking about the company.

Moral of the story: let people unsubscribe with only a click or two. Just because they are unsubscribing doesn’t mean that they want nothing to do with your service. However, if you make it impossible for them to unsubscribe, then they may not want anything to do with your service.


This is a guest post by Kimberly Wilson. Kimberly is from accredited online colleges, she writes on topics including career, education, student life, college life, home improvement, time management etc.