FBox: The sky isn't falling
Having listened to the Facebook announcement this morning, I am even more convinced that emailpocalypse isn’t happening.
Look, despite the fact that companies like Blue Sky Factory think that this means marketers are NEVER EVER going see the inside of an inbox again this isn’t the end of email marketing.
Yes, Facebook email is a messaging platform that marketers are not going to have direct, unlimited and unfettered access to. I have no problem with this. Unfettered access to a messaging platform has been abused by marketers long enough, that I heartily approve of a platform that gives real control back to the recipient.
With that being said, there are a couple blindingly obvious ways to avoid having to give users control of their own inbox.
- Do not allow users to sign up for your mail with a Facebook email address. Require them to give you an address not at Facebook. This means the marketer will be assured their mail won’t be bounced or added to spam when sending to Facebook. No one is going to be moving to only having a Facebook account for a long time, and if/when that ever happens the entire model is going to be different. History tells us Facebook is continually tweaking and changing things, so it’s better to deal with the now, rather than speculating on what might happen 3 or 4 years down the road.
- Alternatively, you can make users who want to receive your mail at their Facebook address subscribe to your newsletters through their Facebook account. This gives the marketer the same opportunity for access to the inbox as every other friend the recipient has.
But, I really don’t think this is going to be a marketing platform. Zuc said during his talk that the messaging of the future is: personal, immediate, informal and short. None of this applies to marketing mail. I have no doubt many marketers are going to try and get into the FBox, but that’s not what it’s for.
Really folks, stand down and stop panicking. This isn’t going to kill email, it’s just another way to message.