MediaPost – Four Signs Of A Dysfunctional Email Program
A friend of mine recently shared with me an article that her office was sending around. Titled “7 Signs of a Dysfunctional Company,” it was distributed by her company’s executive management team, who asked staffers to comment, honestly, on how they felt their company fared against the criteria mentioned in the piece.
As I read through the article, two thoughts immediately struck me. First, one had better watch out for the sorry suckers at her office who step in that landmine. I mean, c’mon. Executive management asking the staff if they meet the definition of dysfunctional — isn’t that, in and of itself, dysfunctional? My second thought was that these criteria could also describe dysfunctional email programs pretty succinctly.
There are two ways of looking at this: one, to examine the dysfunction of email program operations; the other, to look at the content and strategy of the program itself. I figure we all know that email operations are grossly dysfunctional — so I wouldn’t be sharing anything new if I focused there. So instead, let’s dive into the email programs themselves.
I have chosen four of the seven signs that I believe align best. If you say “yes” to any of these flaws, then you may just be dysfunctional (er, your program — not you specifically).
Ivory tower effect. That’s when email content reflects the directive of the company and does not recognize or care about what the customer actually wants or needs. Organizations are doing an increasingly better job at recognizing that their marketing efforts (email included) are no longer about what wares they want to tout; it is the age of the customer. If you believe that your marketing messaging and email content is about company directives, though, then your program is likely an ivory tower (and probably not performing as well as it could).
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