I just got off the phone with Network Solutions; they called me about some services I let expire. It seems that even the formidable web domain registrar has decided not to count on email broadcasting. They’ve instead moved to reduce lost sales through direct marketing like normal brick and mortar businesses. They actually picked up a phone and called me.
Email Sucks for business communication. You are rarely sure if your customers received it and if they did they may have just deleted it. Sure, it works some of the time but with all the filters and trash that ends up in your email box nobody can count on it as their only form of communication. Dot-com businesses are smart enough to finally give in to the real world reality.
It is just as true today as it has been since before the internet existed, direct sales and direct marketing are still the most effective form of sales today.
It doesn’t stop with Network Solutions either. Last week (the reason I thought to Blog on this) I received a call from Ebay. I had a bad transaction with a seller and I had to file a Paypal claim. Not only was I able to reach PayPal.com on the phone every single time I called, Ebay also called me after the transaction to see if they could help smooth over the relations with the seller. No, Really… They called me.
I was fascinated as to why they called me and it turned out that they are trying to protect the reputations of sellers that sell high-ticket items. But I was most impressed by how Ebay worked to smooth out relations AFTER I was already paid back by PayPal.
Now not all dot-comers have “stepped into the light” when it comes to picking up the phone but I have felt a lot of this lately. I have had positive real world conversations with Network Solutions, Ebay, PayPal and facebook. I still have had no luck even finding a phone number for google adwords though.
added: I have also received direct mail from Microsoft, Yahoo, Ebay and more..