I'm always amazed by what I see on the Internet sometimes. The things that people do that not only demonstrate that they have no clue what they are doing, but also that they know little or nothing about being professional in business.
Below are seven trends I've noticed. These are things you should NEVER do in business unless you want to ruin your reputation and throw your business away.
SPAM. This one should be obvious. When you send email to someone who doesn't ask for it, you're asking for trouble.
Let me make this abundantly clear: I AM A WOMAN. Therefore, I don't need Viagra, I don't have a package, and I'm not interested in pleasing women. I don't want a mortgage because it's too much yard work, and what I do behind closed doors whether I own it or not is none of your business.
To solve this problem, I recommend you encrypt your email address on your site. There are plenty of free email encryptors on the web you can use. I only have one account that really gets a lot of spam, and that's because I use it to receive newsletters, post on forums and to get public email.
Here's the email encryptor I use, and it works very well: http://automaticlabs.com/products/enkoderform/
I also use SPAM Assassin as part of my webhosting, and it shoots down a lot without causing me to lose email I am looking for.
Frivolous SPAM Complaints. I had a spam complaint filed against me because a link to my site in my resource box for one of my articles had the word marketing in it. The article wasn't even published in my newsletter.
I filed a rebuttal and dropped it. It was obvious to me that the person who filed the complaint didn't know how to read. Newsletter publishers don't normally spam. They send their email to subscribers. What's worse is the so called regulatory group let the complaint be filed without even bothering to read the email.
The best thing to do here is to make your newsletter list double opt in. My web hosting company requires this, but they have it set up automatically for me, so it's not a problem.
The rest you can ignore. Ignorance is supposed bliss. These people don't have any problems to solve so they won't need your products.
You can also make a link available at the bottom of your email so that readers can unsubscribe. Occassionally, you will still get mail from newbies who don't know how to click the link. When you do, just click it yourself.
For those of you who like to file these types of complaints, try to be a little more careful when you read your email. For those of us on here trying to make an honest buck, we aren't out to get you.
Dear Friend, Dear Publisher, or Dear Nobody emails. Look, if you want to do business with me, at least learn my name. Then you might lead me to think that you are actually interested in doing business with me to solve my problem and not because you want to sell me something.
You'll get these from time to time. I delete them. People who send out emails like this never get a chance to correspond with me again.
Be personal. When you send someone email, at least check his/her web site to see if there is a name listed.
Typing in all caps or all small letters. I know email is cheap, but WHO WANTS TO BE SHOUTED AT? I read a lot of email every day, some of it junk, some of it important. I'm very forgiving to those whose second language is English, but if your primary language is English, could you please write your email the same way you would write a real letter?
I don't like getting emails tht look lik this. i wonder about your iq. You can delete those too unless it's really important. Maybe these people will read my article and take a hint.
Take the time to write your emails where they are legible and easy to read. This is your reputation here. Show that you are a professional.
I know that occasionally I make a mistake here and there in thing I type. I probably write several thousands words a week. It's not intentional. A lot of what I see is though.
You subscribe to my newsletter list and then expect me to pay for you to receive email because you claim it's spam. Yep, I had one of these too, only the guy subscribed to my ecourse. 30 lessons. I was supposed to pay at least 15 cents for him to receive each email because he wouldn't approve receiving an ecourse he subscribed to. Those, you can put on global remove. Save other webmasters with your web hosting the trouble of doing it themselves.
You're not on vacation, but you reply anyway. I get quite a few of these. I delete them. I don't mind a customer or reader who is legitimately on vacation, but if you want to send me your offer, take the time to write me an email. I don't have time to read autoreplies, and I might mistake it for spam and put you on my spam list. Unless you really are on vacation, save the autoreply for when you do go on vacation.
You don't include contact information or removal instructions. The part about removal instructions I already covered.
I'm always nervous about doing business with someone who doesn't offer contact information. I've even replied to a few emails that I thought were legitimate and they bounced.
If you want to build a relationship with someone, provide your information. Build credibility. Show that you are a legitimate business.
By now you are either laughing or fuming. Either one is ok. This article is meant to make you think about your reputation, your presentation, and your professionalism. If you really want to build a business online, and you really want to make money, then make every effort to look your best.
Although doing business online can sometimes be different from doing business offline, some things never change. Good manners is one of them.