How To Personalize Your Autoresponders

It's the buzz word in all the predictions for 2009 – the ability to personalize.

I couldn't agree more.  But how do you do that?

Sean D'Souza has some great advice on sending personal messages to subscribers.  It may take some work, but the results can be pretty amazing.  See what Sean has to say about the stupidity of autoresponders.

Look at it from a customer's point of view.  Are you in a business where you're trying to build a relationship with your customer?  (Who isn't these days).  What would a real response, from a real person mean to you?

I especially love Leesa Barnes comment about post-purchase phone calls to her customers.  

I call everyone who makes a purchase through my website. Whether it’s a $7 item or a $1997 product, I pick up the phone and call them.

This is a change I made recently and I just LOVE the reaction I get. My customer is shocked to hear my voice. I can hear them chocking on coffee as they say “Is this **the** Leesa?”

I thank them for making the purchase, then I ask what one problem they hope my product will solve. I dedicate 15 mins to each customer. If I get their voicemail, I mention their website or business name as well so they know it’s not a robotic recording. 

I'm thinking, even if you could only reach some of your customers, imagine the information you could get!   It makes my customer research mouth water.

Think this isn't practical if you're a bigger business?  Read the discussion in the comments.  

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4 Responses to How To Personalize Your Autoresponders

  1. AdWomen says:

    Now-a-days personalization is really important if we want to fidelize your audience.

  2. Leesa Barnes says:

    I got the idea from my friend, Nancy Marmolejo of She makes a phone call to all those who purchase her products. I loved the idea so much, I started to implement it.

  3. Ashraf says:

    Great comments, aloughth your suggestions are applicable to a much wider audience than just women in academia. All those qualities you cite that limit personal advancement apply to both sexes and in public and private institutions as well. It is not acting like a girl’ that these qualities are born of, but the humble self effacing lingering guilt of Christianity and altruism. Our society teaches us not to be rationally proud of our accomplishments, but to humbly hide them and apologize to our peers for their not being able to achieve those things. It teaches us that niceness’ isn’t honesty and integrity, but agreeability. We are supposed to try to achieve, but not be proud of achievement. The false dichotomy that emerges from this is the idea that you are either a decent’ person who is always agreeable, apologetic, humble, and nurturing, or a mean selfish narcissistic person who is proud, assertive, and disagreeable. We should be proud of our accomplishments, this does not make one selfish in any pejorative sense, but rational and honest. We shouldn’t be agreeable just for the sake of agreeability, that is not a virtue in it’s own right, we should have integrity and trust our judgements yet know our limits. We should dislike people who deserve to be disliked, and like people who deserve to be liked. We should build our own healthy sense of self worth based on rational assessments of our selves, not be blindly dependent on every irrational whimsical evaluation of every passer bye. If we are confident in the judgements we used to derive our own sense of self worth it wouldn’t matter if someone didnt bother to bend over backwards to protect ourselves from our no longer fragile ego. It is not that women should act more like men, a whole generation of wussy apologetic men has been borne of these attitudes, it is that people should act more like rational human beings complete with rational evaluations of self and rational values, goals, and attitudes in life. As Aristotle wrote two millenia ago A proper sense of one’s self is based on a reverent love for the truth

  4. Joseph says:

    I’m a feminist and I agree with all your ponits EXCEPT the notion that feminists are the ones standing in the way of female progress. Oh come on. There are only so many times such vague references to feminists can be used as a whipping boy.Your advice is great. But even Clay Shirky, whom you quote at length, later acknowledged that his Rant Against Women didn’t take into account the fact that some women who don’t play the femininity game still wind up losing because they’re seen as bitches, as he put it on the NPR show On The Media. Let’s not be naive here: women have a hard time making it as professionals NOT because feminists are standing in their way, but because they get infinitely mixed messages about absolutely every aspect of their professional personae. Put on makeup! But not too much! Wear attractive clothing! But not too expensive or sexy or Patty Hewes-y! Be strong and decisive! But don’t come across as a bitch!I’m certainly not saying that women should play girly-girl god forbid. But I can name at least six instances of strong women being derided as bitches by their colleagues (male and female). I know you like to play the plain-spoken truth-teller but truly, Dr. K., leaping onto the anti-feminist bandwagon does no one any good. I can’t think of a single woman colleague at my very large research university who’d offer such advice; and I can’t think of a single one who’s escaped the whiplash of mixed messages throughout her career.

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