Don’t Abuse Your Reader’s Permission…

April 6, 2009

One of my “survival strategies” for marketing in an “attention economy” is to never abuse permission.

Any reader of this blog knows how I feel about that.

So, the other day, when my friend and former Microsoft colleague, Sanjay reached out to me, I had no choice but to stick to my guns.

image“Jeremy,” he said. “We are doing another CRM Incubation Week like we did where you spoke before and I was wondering if you’d promote it to your blog audience.”

I told him flat out…NO.

The reason is that, my understanding of why people come to this blog is for the intersection between marketing, technology, and relationships (those are my passions).

If I deviate from that to promote a Microsoft-sponsored event to help start-ups build on the CRM platform in Boston….well, then, I am on the slippery slope to losing your permission.

And, most of my readers, just wouldn’t care about that type of event. If it’s not relevant, you start tuning me out.

So, I told him I wouldn’t do it.

But, I suppose there are always ways to kill two birds with one stone ;-)

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arobar said on 4.06.2009 at 6:02 PM


Halelly said on 4.07.2009 at 7:52 AM

After reading the last line, I admired your cleverness... and then felt duped... Maybe it would have been better to be less transparent this time? It is about the final effect after all, no?

Jeremy Epstein said on 4.07.2009 at 9:26 AM

Halelly-I'm sorry if you felt duped. That certainly wasn't the point. I think Angie picked up on it.

The key is that I wasn't forcing an irrelevant message at you. I was simply using it as an example to emphasize the need to be relevant..and a byproduct of that was to highlight the opportunity available.

jdub said on 4.07.2009 at 9:40 AM

I don't think it was sneaky nor do I feel I was duped. I think it was heavy-handed and a bit lame, since this is the equivalent of telling people "don't think about pink elephants" when your goal is to have them thinking about pink elephants. Once I saw the links that you provided, it was too obvious what you were doing.

A little too much "look at me for sticking to my guns . . . NOT" for my taste.

Jer979 said on 4.07.2009 at 11:10 AM

Wow. Tough crowd today. This was really supposed to be tongue in cheek.

What he had in mind was a blog post that said "Announcing the MS CRM Incubation Week" and a news release.

And/or a 'blast email' to my list.

That I won't do and wouldn't do. That's the point.

If I were sneaky or duping I wouldn't have been transparent with the "two birds" comment and the smiley.

Love you guys, but on this wrong, I think you're missing the point.

jdub said on 4.07.2009 at 3:40 PM

are we wrong? you got three negative comments. (ok, 2 negative, one calling you sneaky). In your world of WOM/CDM isn't it the perception you've created rather than your intention that matters?