Email marketing is one of the most effective forms of marketing and reaching new customers. It’s very cheap, it’s immediate and it allows you to send a detailed message, with a call to action, direct to people are already interested in your products.
Despite this, many companies shy away from email marketing, largely because of the negative connotations it has surrounding it. Email marketing is tainted due to the spam emails that are constantly sent flying around the Internet. Indeed, the majority of emails sent are spam, so any emails that offer products and services are invariably deleted without even being read, even though they are genuine.
This is one such spam email that we received this week, claiming we had won the ‘British Lottery’. As usual, it was asking for our full details, details that would be used to create ID fraud and probably lead to applications for credit cards and the like.
The email read:
The Lottery Company
PO Box 200
YOU HAVE WON 710,000 POUNDS STERLING
Our Dear Winner,
You have won the sum of Ј710,000 (SEVEN HUNDRED AND TEN THOUSAND, POUNDS STERLING) from BRITISH LOTTO on our 2009 End of the Year charity bonanza.
The winning ticket was selected from a Data Base of Internet Email Users, from which your Address came out as the winning coupon.
We hereby urge you to claim the winning amount quickly as this is a monthly lottery. Failure to claim your win will result into the reversion of the fund to our following month.
You are therefore requested to immediately contact out Claims Department below quoting winning number: CODE NUMBER-05 29 76 722.
Contact: MR GARRY MURPHY
Provide the following information needed to process your winning claim.
(a) Your full Name and Address.
(b) Your Telephone and fax numbers
(c) You tax I.D.Number (if any).
(d) Your country of origin
(e) Your Age
(f) Your Occupation
Congratulations once again.
Please don’t forget to quote your winning number when you contact the claims Dept.
What is particularly telling about this email (despite the fact that we don’t play the lottery) is that the email address we are asked to send our full details to, including TAX ID number, is firstname.lastname@example.org. Why a .cc? A .cc TLD is for the Cocos (Keeling) Islands.
Surely the British Lottery (whatever that is supposed to be) would have a .co.uk. If the spam merchants are going to the trouble of sending these emails, they could at least use a convincing email address.
Emails like this really do give email marketing a bad name.