Stop Sending Emails When They’re Unnecessary

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Remember the extremely positive review I wrote of my experience with TurboTax the other day? I still think very highly of the company, but I do have a suggestion for them. Stop sending me emails once I’m done. I have gotten several (unnecessary) emails from TurboTax over the last week and it is starting to get annoying. They are reminding me of the April 15th tax deadline, warning me that prices go up, etc. Quite frankly, I get it and I don’t need them to contact me further.

When a customer is finished using your product or service (especially when it is something with a clear purpose, like filing taxes), stop emailing them for a while. You should send them a nice survey a day or two after to see what they thought of their experience, but anything beyond that is probably unnecessary. A customer who has already filed their taxes doesn’t need to be reminded of a tax deadline or of a future price increase; the information is irrelevant. When customers receive irrelevant information via email, they start to get annoyed. When customers get annoyed, an attempt at helping (or selling) actually starts to help the brand.

Your marketing and product systems should be coordinated. When a customer files at TurboTax, their email should be removed from the marketing list for the rest of the year. You can start emailing them for tax time in 2009, but for 2008, they’re done. Further communication isn’t necessary (and shouldn’t happen) unless there is a problem or something that is genuinely relevant to them. The same thing applies if a customer cancels – you should stop emailing them about product updates and such. It seems simple, but a lot of companies don’t do it because their systems aren’t interested.

The goal is to have systems that are integrated and on the same page as each other. When the systems are integrated, the customer experience can go much smoother.