My wife recently received the following final notice to renew her subscription to Entertainment Weekly magazine.
Now, we like to know about all our favorite TV shows and movies as when it's convenient for us, however, we don't follow entertainment news very closely.
In fact, we only have the Entertainment Weekly magazine subscription because it came as a result of donating money to help the Special Olympics.
Thus, we don't plan on renewing and most likely would not have subscribed in the first place had it not been tied to the donation.
So what's wrong with this letter (actual letter below)?
Well, for starters, it's very aggressive, which gives it an edgy and, in my opinion, negative tone.
Quotes from the letter that represent my case and point:
"If you don't renew now, we'll 'pull the plug' on your service…"
"You will miss out…"
"In short, you will be left out…"
To my wife and I, who aren't die hard about getting our entertainment news delivered to us in a hardcopy magazine format this direct mail message fell on deaf ears.
We were further pushed away from even considering renewing by the aggressiveness and negative tone of the letter.
When reading the letter it almost feels as if we're being bullied into renewing.
Now, I will give them credit for aggressively pushing the sale in this letter as it's a final notice.
However, I think that point and sense of urgency can be made in a more positive tone, and likely with better response rates. It's about treating customers as humans, not just readership numbers.
What absolutely would have worked better for us would have been a "valued customer" approach.
Here's an example of what I mean:
Dear So & So,
We've noticed that you have not yet renewed your Entertainment Weekly subscription.
Perhaps you weren't aware that your subscription is about to expire on [insert expiration date].
You've been a valued customer and we would hate to see you go. That's why we're offering you an exclusive discount on your renewal (a 76% savings).
This is a limited time offer. Take advantage of our discounted price today. Continue receiving all the fun weekly entertainment news you've come to expect -- renew now.
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Posted by: Nick Venturella
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