Today I want to talk a little bit about permission based marketing. I’ll do this primarily through a story that I want to share with you guys. I’m not the creator of this idea, Seth Godin wrote a book named Permission Marketing, get that book if you want to learn more about some awesome marketing stuff.

So here’s the deal. So I get a text on my phone through one of business lines for an ad that we placed on craigslist for a house that we have for sale. I’ll tell you what the text said and then I’ll talk about it. The person in question says “hey, looks like you’ve got a great property on craigslist, are you a fellow real estate investor or wholesaler?” So I immediate assumed it was another investor who saw one of my ads on craigslist or Facebook and is reaching out. Perhaps he has a wholesale property or perhaps he’s just out there looking for properties, who knows. Always happy to connect with other investors. If you operate in the Buffalo area, we’re always looking for new investors. I was gave him our information and he writes back, “great, I’m an investor and I get most of my leads from craigslist. In fact, I published a free training about it, would you like to check it out?” So this guy messages me under the false pretense of a property we have and then immediately starts to market to me about a product that he has about marketing on craigslist. Here’s the best part, he sends that at 1:40 pm and then at 7:40 pm, 6 hours later, he sends, “Hey, here’s my name, I’m an investor doing deals across the US and you can check out my free training on this website here” and then sends me a link to the training, “it will be worth your while.”

He reached out to me acting like he wanted to check out a property that I have listed. That’s fine, I have no issues with an investor reaching out to me to talk about a property. But then he immediate dived into sending me a link to his product. So here’s the best part, not only does he do this 6 hours after, and mind you I have not responded because I’m not really interested in learning about your craigslist marketing method, no offense, I have my own marketing methods and they work fantastic, in fact I’d be willing to bet that mine work better than yours simply because have an entire team of people testing these things out. Not to poopoo his ideas, but listen dude, if I didn’t respond to your text I’m probably not interested in hearing about this. This gets into not having permission. Here’s where it gets better, not only does he send me these texts unsolicited, he then subscribed me his email list and sent me the stuff anyways without me asking to get it. At no point did I raise my hand to do this. Which means since I didn’t give him my email address, he must have gone and scraped it from my website somewhere which we make our email address fairly publically available so it’s out there and I except some spam because of that. But here’s a guy who not only came in unsolicited and asked if I wanted something that I never asked for, but number two he adds me to his email list without ever asking if I wanted to get this. Here’s what I did. Number one I unsubscribed, number two I marked his email as spam because I didn’t request it. Here’s the deal. I get his tactics, he’s building a list and trying to get more people on there and that’s an admirable thing to do, but if you don’t ask permission, and what I mean by ask permission is literally did they raise their hand and say “hey, I want to.” I never once raised my hand and said “I want this information from you.” Now if I had expressed an interest and said “sure send me some info, here’s my email,” then any of those things would have been not only legal for him to do but it also would have indicated my interest. If I didn’t respond you in 6 hours then I probably don’t want it. Then why are you even bothering trying to market something to me that I clearly have zero interest in.

So the lesson that I want you guys to away from this is that if you want to do more marketing via the internet, primarily via email, get people’s permission first. What does permission look like? It can look a lot of different ways, number 1, I text back and say “hey yeah that sounds really cool can you send it to this email address here?” That’s permission, that’s me saying “I would like this.” Number 2, an Opt in. There are actually two categories of Opt in. Single opt in, where I put my info into a webform and you send me the information. The second way is a double opt in which is the most permission. This not only says “I put my information in the webform” to say “I want your information,” I got an email from you, I clicked the link on the email and said “Great, I am confirming that I in fact do want this info.” That is the highest level permission because I not only gave you my info, but I went to an email and clicked a link to say “I do seriously want your information.” So that’s what this could do for you, this permission based marketing. Do it, use it, get people’s permission before you ever send them any information especially via info. If they didn’t say they want it, they won’t be your customer anyways. Not only did this craigslist guy waste time texting someone who isn’t going to be customer, he pissed me off so I won’t want his stuff because he’s annoying me by doing so. That’s just an all together terrible tactic to get someone to join your list.