An Example of Irresponsible Marketing?

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Recently, a well-known marketer sent out an email fanning the flames of outrage regarding Aweber’s new price structure.

In case you don’t know what I’m talking about, for YEARS we’ve all enjoyed the exceptional email deliverability we could all get for just $19.95 per month.

It’s an incredible value.

Honestly, I’m not real happy about the new pricing either – but that’s not what this message is about.

It’s about irresponsible marketing.

Because this “well-meaning” marketer definitely didn’t give you the whole picture.

Here’s what I mean…

He states the pricing changes from $19.95 to $69 to manage up to 10,000 people.

Now, the element of “outrageous price phobia” could lead the reader of his email to go out to Aweber and review the pricing.

And if someone were to review the pricing, then the price points might create some anxiety and maybe even some “sticker shock”.

The problem is…

What he presents as a problem is only partially true.

Here’s the truth…

If you’re a current customer you would have to choose to upgrade to the new features before you’re subjected to the new price structure.

And the new features rock – they give you enterprise-class features that have never been available before to small business. (This isn’t meant to be a promo for Aweber so you can read about the features at Aweber’s blog if you want:

The point is you have a choice: keep your same old prices without the new features -OR- pay extra for the killer new features.

It ain’t an automatic price jump.

Now, being a marketer myself, I have to say that in some ways I admire him for jumping on this opportunity to agitate a “problem” and offer a solution, but here’s my problem with the email…

I believe the way he did it was irresponsible.


Because ultimately his goal is to suggest you join his $17/month hosting and autoresponder solution – OR – to “get your own hosting and run your own autoresponder”.

“Get your own hosting and run your own autoresponder”


I believe this recommendation was irresponsible because the majority of the people who take his advice and run it themselves (or join his hosted monthly service for $17) may have just signed a death warrant for their business.

How so?

Because this “well meaning” marketer didn’t tell you anything about what is REALLY needed to assure maximum email deliverability, like:

– Whitelisting
– Feedback Loops
– Authentication
– ISP Relationships
– Bouncebacks
– Reverse DNS’ing
– and a whole list of additional issues that the common marketer would NOT have the time, knowledge or the specialized experience to properly address!

Kinda makes you think, huh?

Does HE have the time, knowledge, experience or resources to address these issues?

Probably NOT.

If he DID, I believe he would have presented the entire picture along with the credibility to support his recommendation (or $17 solution). Don’t you?

Heck, even the sales page for his “affordable autoresponder service” doesn’t even mention these necessary measures that would ensure the best email deliverability possible.

Being able to send emails from your own hosting and autoresponder does NOT mean the customer receives the email.
And isn’t the person receiving the email the whole point?

Here’s what I believe happens next for the unfortunate people who follow his advice:

Email deliverability plummets, customer relationships begin to die, domains get black-listed, get labeled as a SPAMmer, and worst of all for a struggling email marketer: SALES DROP OR BECOME NON-EXISTENT.

(A good friend of mine ignored my warnings and is suffering all of this right now).

And all this happens because a marketer wants to make a few bucks by playing on your fears, and I believe hiding behind a false veil of “trying to help you out” to do it.

It’s a shame if you ask me.

And the kind of irresponsible marketing this guy is engaging in is one reason why our industry has such a bad reputation.

Look, I’m not judging the guy. Maybe he just doesn’t know any better. Maybe he is genuinely trying to help.

But it’s unfortunate that I’ve actually seen this “get your own hosting and your own autoresponder” recommendation coming from “A-List Marketers” in increasing frequency for the past year.

And I know that none of them (except 1) has a CLUE about how to achieve and maintain high levels of email deliverability.

The sad thing is most of the people who take this advice would simply suffer even more losses in their business and not even know why.

My recommendation is this:

Don’t let saving a couple of dollars be your only (or primary) motivation for making such an important decision as choosing your autoresponder service. And if you followed this guy’s bad advice, request a refund.

I hope this helps.