Digital Pet Peeves

Everyone has them, those small annoyances, little things that can ruin your good mood, pet peeves. Some real-life examples that do it for me; when waiting in line at the register of the supermarket and the customer behind you bumps you with his cart, a perfectly nice decor piece ruined by a sticker that doesn’t come off easily, your partner leaving the toothpaste open and you having to deal with the dried out bit of toothpaste, getting stuck with your cardigan on a doorknob when you’re in a hurry, people trying to onboard the train before the people that are exiting, …

Well, I stumbled upon some digital pet peeves these last weeks and wanted to share them with you. As I believe these could be easily avoided with the right technology and the right knowledge.

You know I already clicked your newsletter, right?

This is a pet peeve I run into on a regular base. As I come into touch with email marketing for my job almost every day, I also find it interesting to subscribe to many newsletters to see how other companies approach them. I often get subscribed to those newsletters by a popup screen when I visit the website. I am as many people enticed by the discount code that comes with the optin.

After going through the company’s welcome journey, I read the newsletters as they come in. Frequently I’m triggered to click on a link, landing on the website. And low-and-behold what is the first thing that shows up? That same subscription popup with the same discount promise.

You know I came from the newsletter. So why are these companies requesting me to subscribe again?

This can be easily tackled by adding logic to the popup. If the utm tag shows the source the visitor came from, exclude them from the target of the popup.

Show me what I came for!

Hello, my name is Leonie and I’m a Pinterest addict. You’d think looking at screens for 8 hours a day for my job would be enough, but I also enjoy doing that in my spare time. I love browsing through my Pinterest feed and adding pins to my collection of ideas and inspiration that is already +20K pins large.

Pinterest is a channel that is often used by companies to showcase their products in an inspirational way and it’s working! I find myself often clicking on their ad and landing on their website. Unfortunately, the product I was seduced with, is nowhere to be seen on the page.

This is an example of advertising misalignment. This is disruptive for the customer experience. I’m expecting to see the same product(s) or be recommended at least similar items when I click on the ad. Instead I see the general landing page every other visitors sees when coming to the website. This demotivates to search further for the product I actually came for.

Of course this occurrence isn’t solely applicable to Pinterest, it extends all forms of digital advertising. To solve this, it pays off to invest in an omnichannel approach and personalization strategy.

Tone it down…

As much as I love receiving newsletters, I experience some companies coming off too strong. I’m subscribing to a newsletter in the hopes of receiving content that is relevant to me, to receive personalized product recommendations and inspiration. Basically assuming someone will vet my online existence, my hearts wishes and desires and match this with their assortment. Instead I often feel that this doesn’t come through in a lot of newsletters, instead I am bombarded with an amount of emails with content that feels generic. This can be experienced as an annoyance and it can trigger subscribers to opt-out as soon as they opted in.

A welcome journey is a perfect way to ease in your new potential customers. This is the opportunity to capture information about your potential customer and them willingly to give it. Use that window to focus on what is important, afterwards you can add them to a bigger audience for batch communication where you hopefully still think about personalizing (part of) the content.

Stop ignoring me

Have you ever had a person asking your opinion, then disregarding it and choosing their own first thought instead? Well, I find this is the digital equivalent of such a situation. Nothing as irritating as receiving communication you already opted out for. You as a company gave the option to the subscriber to provide their preferences, but in the end did not listen to it?

You can have an elaborate preference center in place, provide a one-click unsubscribe option, … But if this data is not managed correctly and more importantly is not applied correctly, it doesn’t mean anything.

This mistake can cause you with a bad deliverability reputation in the long run, a negative experience for the receiver, for a higher workload with customer service, …. Reasons enough to make sure this is on point in your organization.

How is this place managed?

Have you ever asked yourself that question? Doesn’t anyone check this, how did they manage to overlook this, how is it possible they still exist, … Questions I sometimes ask myself when I have a bad customer experience. For example, when I receive communication that is ill-timed. Of course a lot of processes these days are automated and luckily so! But there is nothing worse than a bad automation, not taking the most basic scenario’s in consideration.

I had one recently when I had to take my car in for maintenance. I received an email reminding me that a maintenance needed to be planned and as it was my first time I got a discount. When trying to book an appointment through the landing page, I had to fill in all my (car) information, even-though everything was already listed in the email I received. This put me off and the result was that I didn’t book through that landing page.

In the end I booked through the general website and made an appointment with another garage as it was closer to my home. Even after my maintenance was executed, I received 2 reminder emails to cash-in the discount from the first email. Two emails that could have been avoided as they could track my car system and see that the maintenance had already been executed.

That is why it’s important that you ask customers / people that experience your automations for feedback. You cannot think or avoid everything but when including end-users in the process of creating the automation, you’ll be able to see the experience through their eyes.