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One of the most common questions I have received in over the past three months is “What is going to be different about email this year? REALLY different?”
The expectation, it seems, is that we’ll claim impending victory over one of email’s killer codes (i.e., video in email, mobile rendering). While I’m hopeful we’ll make progress in these areas, don’t cue the marching band yet.
Looking at broader online marketing trends, it occurred to me that the answer is starring most of us in the face every day on Facebook: Email needs a “thumbs up” button.
Good content gets rewarded in social media. On Facebook, we can “like” something. On Twitter, we can “retweet.” These are measures of positive sentiment that tell marketers they’ve hit the mark, even when no immediate action is taken. Email clients, on the other hand, train users to focus on the negative by giving the “spam” button prominent placement.
ISPs do have what they consider a positive sentiment measure. TINS (“this is not spam”) data is not widely advertised nor shared, but ISPs do use it when determining sender reputation. After a message has been relegated to the spam folder, a user can mark the message as “not spam,” telling the ISP it made a “false positive.”
Problem is, both email feedback mechanisms focus on the negative. Either we mark something as spam, or users correct an incorrect evaluation. Email needs a mechanism that encourages subscribers to affirm marketers who do things right!
Originally From “Hey ISPs, Can I Get a Thumbs-Up?”| Published March 3, 2010
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