No-Spam

Have you ever received marketing email from Amazon?  Never?  Well, you're not alone. I haven't either.  But why?  Why should Amazon not leverage it's enormous power to sell me even more things?


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To be honest, Amazon offers it customers the power to opt out of marketing email, as it should.  And I thank them.  


But shouldn't they send me a courtesy reminder that I have left something in my shopping cart but not bought it?  This would be good to know sometimes.  What if I thought I had purchased the items in my cart, but the transaction had not completed.  This happened to me just the other day.  

I bought a gift card for my son, but it never arrived.  There was no email from Amazon.  I was dumbfounded.  Had the infallible Amazon made a mistake?  

I was forced to go to Amazon.com, log in, and review past orders.  There was my unfulfilled order, and it needed a different form of payment.  (The debit card didn't work, and I still don't know why.) I wish Amazon had sent me a simple email.  But they just don't do that, and I've wondered why.  Here are some thoughts.

Email content 

Let's pretend that Amazon does start to use push marketing.  They want to send emails to potential customers.  What appears in the email?  They know the email address of each of its customers.  They know what you like from your Wish List.  They know what you like to buy from your past purchases.  They know what you'll likely buy next, either as a cross-sell or an upsell, since it appears on Amazon's home page when you log in.  Content of the emails is not the problem.

Branding 

Every email molds our brand perception of a company.  Useful information?  Brand improves.  Too many emails?  Brand degrades.  Perhaps Amazon does not want is brand tarnished from email overload.

Jeff says NO 

Possibly Jeff Bezos, Amazon CEO, decided not to spam his customers.  He did leave a lucrative job on Wall Street, and perhaps he wants to distance himself from that distasteful past.  He does live in Seattle, at the other end of the continent, after all.

Search engine marketing

Amazon dominates search engine marketing.  Google shoes?  Amazon's ad for Zappos comes up first.  Google MP3 player, and Amazon's entry is at the top.  So it goes for nearly every item a consumer might want.  With that kind of dominance, who needs to spam?

History 

Perhaps Amazon once did use push marketing via email.  For one or more of the above reasons, they stopped.

More history 

Any company with an overpowering market presence may not need to use email marketing, or any marketing.  This was once the case with a famous chocolate company, the largest in the US - Hersheys.  Since the introduction of the Hershey Bar in 1900 until 1970, Hershey's did not use mass advertising, including newspaper and magazine ads, and commercials on radio and TV.  Their chocolate bars were so popular that they hardly needed to advertise. However, they did use other forms of marketing.  For example, during World War II Hershey produced hundreds of millions of Ration D chocolate bars for the men and women in uniform, clearly marked as manufactured by the Hershey Chocolate Corporation.  

Today we have the ubiquitous Amazon logo on millions of boxes.  Is Amazon the modern day equivalent of Hershey's?

Amazon logo

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