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How to spot #digitaljunkmail on Twitter

07/12/2011

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If you feel pushed at, well then it is a piece of junk mail, no matter the medium. The actual direct message (DM) reads:

Make money from home. You’re guaranteed at least $3,000 to $8,000 a month [encrypted url]

Why it’s surprising is that social media eliminates the need for push messages. That’s the whole point of:

  1. I follow you
  2. You follow me
  3. (or “You follow me” , “I follow you”)
  4. We retweet, chat, or direct message with real-like conversation about meeting up, leads, or invitations to join groups.

This knock-off of a classic junk-mail pitch in a digital medium makes it even more surprising. The follower and I recently opted-in to a real-time Twitter relationship. That’s different from a sales person who qualifies a lead, moves them through the funnel, and then makes a pitch. This message begins and ends with pitch — I won’t even tell you about the click-through article. So, the creative strategist in me  can only assume one-to-all in focus and intent, automated by design. That’s what my first-impression response tells me.

This type of trickery is what earned direct marketers the “junk mail” derogatory. (Rant over.) Here’s the lesson: Clutter and noise are where you find it, how you create it, and how your followers experience it — intended or not.

What’s the alternative?

Are DMs in Twitter “shout” messages by design? Most certainly not.

What’s your experience in building or joining a community?

Does there come a time when a push, one-for-all message is vital to move people along the funnel? Has it worked?

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