Co-Registration Hurts for Lack of Memory by Chris Donald @inboxgroup

Co-registration Hurts for Lack of Memory

Co-Registration Hurts for Lack of Memory

What is Co-registration?

Co-registration is the process of subscribing to two or more email newsletters at once that are offered to you, usually in a promotion/contest or e-commerce setting.  In some cases the Co-Reg option is pre-checked which is a practice I find to be sleazy at best.

Co-registration takes place when two websites partner to build their respective email lists. For example, when a visitor to your website registers for your newsletter, you can offer him/her a chance to sign up for newsletters from the partnering website.

I don’t believe in co-registration
I’ve never believed in the benefits of co-Reg.  For me, the bad far out ways the good.  Especially now when people have less time and their memory of “opting-in” to some additional newsletter during a purchase or promotion just doesn’t leave a lasting impression.

With Co-Reg lists, unsubscribes tend to be very high and they also generate a large percentage of spam complaints.  Open-rates are usually dismal as well.  This is especially true when the subscriber uses AOL, Hotmail or other “free” email accounts.  The mark as spam button becomes their only measurable action.

Here are a few quotes about Co-Reg from some other email minds:
“In all seriousness, Co-Reg can be a dangerous practice in regards to reputation & deliverability. Tread very carefully indeed.” – @AndrewBonar, Email Deliverability Consultant

If Omaha Steaks did a Co-Reg subscription contest to win an iPad, vegans would subscribe. Each vegan that didn’t win would report the “winner announcement” email as spam. – @JaCaldwell, Red Pill Email Blog
(Okay before the vegans start hating on John, the same would happen if meat-eaters subscribed to win an iPad at Tofu.com.  I’m just sayin’)

And I would be remiss if I didn’t include something from the Pro Co-Reg side.  Here’s a good article from Morgan Stewart at ExactTarget that covers some of the benefits when Co-Reg is done right.

The days of the shotgun approach are over.  You should build your list from people who are interested in your company, products and/or services.  They subscribe because they perceive value. Not because of a contest Co-Reg deal with another website.

If you are looking for ideas to build your email list, there are much better options to consider.  Take a look at this post: “15 innovative ways to get more subscribers“.  Some really good ideas and examples to help you build your subscriber list.

Wait, there’s more!
As a late addition to this post I went to subscribe to the Ben & Jerry’s newsletter when I saw this at the bottom of the subscribe form. “By providing this information, you acknowledge that Ben & Jerry’s may send you information, samples or special offers we feel may be of interest to you about Ben & Jerry’s, or other carefully-selected companies. If you would like more information, please read our Privacy Policy.”

Other carefully-selected companies? REALLY! How can they possibly know what other companies I would be interested in without even asking what my interests are?  Maybe that is their problem with their email marketing.

Please take a moment to leave your comments about Co-Reg.  These are my views and while I know I’m not alone, I understand many out there have a much different view on the subject.

Cheers, Chris

Takeaway: Co-registration can help build your list, but if you don’t do it exactly right you could do major damage to your brand and sender reputation.

Meet the author:

Chris Donald

Chris Donald

Christopher Donald is currently a Partner and VP of Sales and Marketing at Inbox Group, LLC based in Dallas, where he oversees U.S. and International sales of the Inbox Group email marketing service (SaaS). Chris has worked on the front lines of internet sales and marketing since 1995 and directly in email marketing since 2000.

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