Sadly, it’s true. And here’s just a few examples.
You hit a link on some online ‘sponsored’ message, and your phone rings in 3 seconds #$%^$#, or … you get a text immediately. Immediately #$%^$#!!! What? … #$%^$# … I only wanted to get some info emailed to me and, I really don’t want your salesman/woman calling or texting me at 10:00p on a Friday night. Seriously, I don’t. Stop it #$%^$#.
You try to find a phone number on a website, only to find they have no phone number, and ONLY an option to email them a request. Uhhhh #$%^$#, did your customer ‘service’ team all get fired, or sent on vacation? Really, now I do want to talk to a human, and I’m a paying customer; can’t find a human to answer a question RE my account, to save my life.
Oh, back to the first one. And now, you stalk the #$%^$# out of me, with dozens of emails, calls and/or texts, and it’s barely been 24 hours. Really? … #$%^$# … and you think I want to be your customer now? No, I don’t. I’ll find another to give my hard-earned dollars!!
Or often, I’m not looking to buy now, unless it’s shampoo, and I’ll order that online and, it’ll be at my door in a day or two. I’m just interested in learning more about this insurance option, on my own time, or home refinancing, on my own time. In the meantime, I’ll just go grocery shopping at my favorite #HEB, or #Randalls, and I’ll find what I want, in person, like a human – and me still shopping for my own groceries, and choosing my own apples.
Get this. Go to your local branch of your ‘major’ bank and ask to speak to a customer service rep who’s sitting there to answer customer’s questions. So you ask your question. They pick up the phone, and call the same 800# you could call, and they ask the question of their ‘rep’ online, with a code word at the front so they know it’s an internal inbound ‘branch’ call. Uhhh, really, this is how you do it now? #$%^$# – What happened to your customer service, did they all get fired, or you forgot to train them to help me with even basic questions, in person? I’m paying you – I’ll find another bank to do business. Today.
And let’s not forget now, the robo dial calls and texts, even though you’re on the DO NOT CALL list, and it’s been checked and verified. Did you forget to check that, any of you? I spent time listing myself there to avoid these antagonists frustrations, and you maybe ‘forgot’ to purge that list, so you can email me instead. One email would be nice, not 30 in a week.
One big time client has 180,000+ emails in his work email inbox. He’s shared, he can’t get the first email answered before there’s another 10 follow-up emails and now, many scold you for not answering the first email, or say “I’m sure you’ve been busy, did you forget to answer my prior email?”
Really? #$%^$# … uhhh no, you’re stalking the #$%^$# out of me, so I’ll just BLOCK you. How’s that for cutting off your robotic marketing? … now what, you’ll camp at my house or office, and catch me heading to the grocery store? Seriously?
Marketing, this is not. Sales, this is not. Yes, there’s a powerful benefit to online targeting and yet, there must be a limit to stalking #$%^$# that’s going on today. It’s insane. Insane.
- Do you want to be stalked? No.
- Do you want to be texted incessantly? No.
- Do you want to get phone calls, repeatedly, and all hours? No.
- Do you buy a vacuum cleaner, then want retargeting for vacuum cleaners? No.
- Do you want to choose your path, and how you interact with companies? Yes.
- Do you want valued relationships with companies that value your business? Yes.
Get the point? It’s not that difficult – it’s basic human psychology. Very basic, i.e. it’s not that difficult to understand and, even yourself as an example, you don’t want it either. Yes.
And to think, we stalk #$%^$# them to frustration and agony then, we wonder why they don’t buy. Hold on while I finish LMAO, OMG – what the hell? Is this for real? Someone must be punking me, right? Where’s Ashton Kutcher when you need him? Yikes.
In our business, we speak with marketers every single day – EVERY.SINGLE.DAY of the week. And guess what, they’re all mostly very frustrated. Their sales teams are frustrated, and no one’s much answering the phone any more, rarely responding to emails (unless it’s a known contact), and uhhhh … getting a H2H or F2F meeting these days is near impossible anymore. It’s an epidemic we call ‘bunkering’ and it’s a sad result of a shameful practice.
Read the articles, there are many on these topics, and it’ll only get worse, except for those marketers and sales managers who want to give their customers a more bona fide and productive experience. Honestly, these days, it’s not that difficult to set yourself (your company) apart and above the competition. To start, stop stalking people – it’s not working to produce the result you want and, IN FACT, it’s producing the opposite affect.
If you want to reach people, i.e. your customers, how about sending them a little gift, or a nice gesture of goodwill, or offering them an advantage to doing business with you? Or, what about NOT stalking #$%^$# them? Simple steps cause big results, and this ‘marketing’ madness must come to a halt or, you’ll soon find yourself with fewer customers.
Company after company (large and small) are denoting the reality of this situation and, luckily, some are taking prompt action/s to reverse the saga/mess and, building valued relationships with their customers and prospects. It’s not that difficult but first, you must stop the insanity.
Shared in truth and a bit of humor, and happy to chat any time. These topics are important, and apply mostly equally to both B2B and B2C targeting. Some products/services do well with the online-only options, yet many do not. Think carefully how you’re cultivated a relationship the customer WANTS to have with you and your company.
Try being a customer of your company, and see how it goes. I’ve personally coached many CMO’s to do this, and create a fake profile for a test and, 95% of the time, they call back crying and/or screaming. Yes, they found the truth, the reality of overwhelm on their own, firsthand, and they wouldn’t want to be a customer of their own company.
Sadly, that’s both humorous, and horrifying. It’s time we take smarter/better action, and caring for our customers better, more intuitively, and giving them an experience they’ll want to repeat. Now that’s marketing, and that’s sales – like time-tested and proven over and over.