In addition to posting some of my thoughts about how delivery and marketing have different and possible contradictory constraints, I asked folks on the Only Influencers list what they thought. They had some different perspectives, primarily being marketers. One person even welcomed me to the dark side.
The general response from the marketing side of things appeared to be that ISPs need to stop actually filtering marketing email. That would resolve the problems from the marketers perspective. I don’t necessarily think that will help. I believe if marketers had unfettered access to the inbox, most inboxes would be totally un-useable.
My thinking triggered other folks to consider delivery and marketing and what drives both. George Bilbrey, from Return Path, posted an article in Mediapost looking at why good delivery is an important part of a good marketing strategy.
George points out many marketers really do act as if delivery is separate and detrimental to good marketing.
I hear this with my clients and I hear this on discussion lists. They think that the practices that drive high inbox placement rates are antithetical to return on their email marketing investment.
Exactly. I hear a lot of contempt for delivery consultants and good delivery practices from a lot of marketers. They claim our methods and our recommendations come from not understanding marketing. They flat out tell me that “we’re” manufacturing delivery problems by pointing out mail that users don’t want has poor delivery.
There are thousands of companies that have never heard of Return Path, or Word to the Wise, who don’t understand why their perfectly crafted marketing isn’t getting to the inbox. It’s because they don’t understand email and delivery. They want to do what works elsewhere, and those models don’t always map onto email.
And that’s why companies like Word to the Wise and Return Path exist.