Mixing IM & Politics - Not Smart.

109 replies
So today I get a looong email from the guys are Area51Marketing.com endorsing John McCain for President and detailing the reason why, as well as breaking down the reasons they don't support Obama.

Politics aside (I couldn't disagree with them more) - I don't think it's smart to spam your IM list espousing your political views. I could be wrong. But I didn't sign up to receive that type of info from them.

I asked that I be removed from the list and they complied.

What are your thoughts on sending political endorsements to your lists - smart or stupid?
#mixing #politics #smart
  • Profile picture of the author traces2757
    A very bad idea. It tends to become an "us against them" thing, which you have shown can alienate quite a few customers or potential customers.

    What were they thinking?
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  • Profile picture of the author getsmartt
    I would consider it bad for business, but maybe they figured the good of the country out weighed the hit their list would take?
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    • Profile picture of the author RobInCharlotte
      Originally Posted by getsmartt View Post

      I would consider it bad for business, but maybe they figured the good of the country out weighed the hit their list would take?
      If they thought that, then maybe they should have developed a marketing campaign to promote pro-McCain, anti-Obama stuff - videos, links, etc...they certainly would know how to do some viral marketing - and that's an area that frankly, McCain could've used some help in...but send out an email 20 hours before voting starts isn't a well thought out plan imo.
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    • Profile picture of the author Amy Bass
      Originally Posted by getsmartt View Post

      I would consider it bad for business, but maybe they figured the good of the country out weighed the hit their list would take?
      I really like this statement. I have no problem with them showing that they care about their country even if I do or do not agree with their beliefs. I am actually impressed they stood up for their beliefs.
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      • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
        Well, it's a good way to get the clueless, the morons and the idiots off your list.
        Who are you referring to as clueless, morons and idiots?

        Obama supporters? People who don't want to be preached at in an off-topic manner? Folks who actually read the email and saw the insults it contained?

        I'd really like to know that.


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      • Profile picture of the author matthewd
        Originally Posted by Amy Bass View Post

        I really like this statement. I have no problem with them showing that they care about their country even if I do or do not agree with their beliefs. I am actually impressed they stood up for their beliefs.
        I agree with that.

        They had to know they would lose subscribers and ultimately money... but they did it anyway b/c they felt it was for a better cause.

        I don't see why everyone is so pissed off. I respect that they had the guts to do it and not just for the fact that I agree with them... but I would assume that most of the pissed off people are simply mad b/c they disagree with them.
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          • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
            Matthew,
            I would assume that most of the pissed off people are simply mad b/c they disagree with them.
            Why do you assume that? Did you read the email?

            If so, you may have missed the insults. That's very common when we read something we generally agree with. I assure you, they were there.


            Paul
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            • Profile picture of the author matthewd
              Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

              Matthew,Why do you assume that? Did you read the email?

              If so, you may have missed the insults. That's very common when we read something we generally agree with. I assure you, they were there.


              Paul
              Paul,

              Yes, I did read the email.

              I assume this because that is the tone of most people here that are pissed off. Also, I can understand being annoyed or pissed if they had gone the other way with it, thus being against my views.

              The only things I could see that could possibly be insults were the bullets at the end about why people are going to vote for Obama.

              All of their points are true though.

              I am completely baffled as to how many IMers and just entrepreneurs in general are going to vote for Obama.

              Matt
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          • Profile picture of the author melanied
            Hey, I got irritated when StatCounter replaced their regular adsense blocks with Pro Prop 8 banners, you can bet I would have been irritated about this, as well.

            Just give me traffic generation ads when I check my stats and IM info on the IM list I'm signed up for, thankyouverymuch.
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      • Profile picture of the author Kay King
        Have you ever seen any political (or religious, for that matter) discussion where the listener said "gee, you're right - I'll vote for your guy instead of the one I had picked"? I doubt it.

        No matter which side you choose, you're going to alienate about half your list - and that seems like a misdirected effort to me. The election will be over and someone will take office - and these list owners may find themselves with a much smaller list to start the new Year. How effective is that for list management?

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        • Profile picture of the author valerieSONORA
          Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

          Have you ever seen any political (or religious, for that matter) discussion where the listener said "gee, you're right - I'll vote for your guy instead of the one I had picked"? I doubt it.

          No matter which side you choose, you're going to alienate about half your list - and that seems like a misdirected effort to me. The election will be over and someone will take office - and these list owners may find themselves with a much smaller list to start the new Year. How effective is that for list management?

          kay
          Exactly KK.

          How is emailing your list about how good one candidate is and bad the other is "good for your country"? You really thing people are going to go, "Hey, I'm changing my vote now!". The election will be over and you'll be left with a list half the size. Just like you shouldn't lecture your IM list about how they should change their religion.
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        • Profile picture of the author Rod Cortez
          I don't bring up my political or religious opinions in any of my lists. I keep that stuff in house. People opted into my list to get information and value relating to a particular topic and/or niche. Generally speaking, I don't think it's a good idea. Unless you run a political newsletter / blog. Even then you're going to get flamed.
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          • Profile picture of the author Angela V. Edwards
            Originally Posted by Rod Cortez View Post

            I don't bring up my political or religious opinions in any of my lists. I keep that stuff in house. People opted into my list to get information and value relating to a particular topic and/or niche. Generally speaking, I don't think it's a good idea. Unless you run a political newsletter / blog. Even then you're going to get flamed.
            If you do run a political newsletter or blog, people KNOW to expect this sort of thing. They don't expect this with an IM list. Nor should they. I still think it has no place on a non-political list. Like Kay said, it's probably not going to change someone's vote or viewpoint. It's simply going to upset them.
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            • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
              Matthew,

              I disagree about the truth of most of what they wrote, but that's a different discussion.

              Yes, the worst of the insults were the alleged reasons that people would vote for Obama.

              You don't have to be an Obama supporter to be offended by the tactic of dismissing those who disagree with you on complicated issues as somehow inferior or muddled.

              That is truly outrageous stuff. Outrageous enough that I'd have a hard time dealing with Mike in the future. I doubt that matters much to him, mind you, but it's how I feel.

              Iy's not so outrageous to assume that people disagree with him based on the fact that they're mad. It's a flawed assumption, but at least it's not the kind of character assassination Mike engaged in. Just an understandable and common error of logic.


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            • Profile picture of the author ripsnorta2
              If you sign up on a list for IM, dog training, or any other topic, and the list owner starts emailing unrelated topics, does that count as spam?
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          • Profile picture of the author jamesdj1
            Originally Posted by Rod Cortez View Post

            I don't bring up my political or religious opinions in any of my lists. I keep that stuff in house. People opted into my list to get information and value relating to a particular topic and/or niche. Generally speaking, I don't think it's a good idea. Unless you run a political newsletter / blog. Even then you're going to get flamed.

            DITTO!

            The bottom line with me is I respect those on my list and WHY they are there.

            They could give a damn about my political views and honestly I could give a damn about sharing them.
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        • Profile picture of the author GarrieWilson
          Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

          Have you ever seen any political (or religious, for that matter) discussion where the listener said "gee, you're right - I'll vote for your guy instead of the one I had picked"? I doubt it.
          I have.

          I have been both sides.

          Great things can and do happen when we have open minds and can proccess ideas and opions that go against our brainwashing.
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  • Profile picture of the author GarrieWilson
    It depends on how it's done.

    If I sent an email about how one could effect your business, then that deals w/ marketing.

    It also depends on what you agreed to receiving.

    Does the person normally send opinion and/or personal emails?

    I received a political email from Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails. It was not saying who to vote for but to just vote. I liked the email. Made him seem more real.

    Garrie
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    • Profile picture of the author RobInCharlotte
      Originally Posted by GarrieWilson View Post

      It depends on how it's done.

      If I sent an email about how one could effect your business, then that deals w/ marketing.

      It also depends on what you agreed to receiving.

      Does the person normally send opinion and/or personal emails?

      I received a political email from Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails. It was not saying who to vote for but to just vote. I liked the email. Made him seem more real.

      Garrie

      Good points.

      But, no, they don't typically send those kind of emails. Also - it spread some very, very disturbing and incorrect information regarding some of Obama's positions NONE OF WHICH had to do with Internet Marketing.

      I mean, they were talking about abortion in the email. It really ticked me off.

      And as a matter of fact, McCain is AGAINST net Neutrality. And Obama supports it.
      Source: http://blog.wired.com/business/2008/...#netneutrality
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  • Profile picture of the author tomw
    I have to disagree and say knowing how to exploit anything newsworthy or anything in the news, including the recent political fervor, to build buzz about yourself in any market, including IM, can only be a good thing...as this video will show....

    Apparently I Didn't Barack The Vote |

    Watch and enjoy...

    Thomas
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  • Profile picture of the author ss442
    I received the same message but I have a different view, and these guys aren't the only ones who have decided to endorse the conservative side.

    I am on a number of mailing lists and these guys are the third company that voiced their political direction.

    I am sure that they have a different view from an economic standpoint if nothing else. Are they all wrong? These guys are making money and trying to help others do the same but are demonized simply because they have a different opinion than yours?

    "Some people like Chevey's, some like Ford's, but I don't carry any animosity because they call my Camaro a piece of junk". "In my case, they may be right, I don't hate them for it".

    I heard the exact same response, clearly from liberal supporters who voiced their opposition to a "guru's" position with outright disgust that they would do such a thing and of course they added, "I'm canceling my subscription". You have every right to do that.

    I am amazed at how divided this country has become and how it effects people and it really makes me sad.
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    • Profile picture of the author ss442
      To TomW,

      That was funny!

      Thanks dude!
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      Ed Sunderland

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      • Profile picture of the author tomw
        Originally Posted by ss442 View Post

        To TomW,

        That was funny!

        Thanks dude!
        You're welcome although J gets the credit...again!

        Wish I knew how to embed the video in the post, though...

        Thomas
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        • Profile picture of the author TimPhelan
          Good video. I was reading the comments and they all seem to think Jason made the video. It's actually made by moveon.org. Anyone can enter their names in it. One of the comments was from a guy who even got pissed at Jason for endorsing moveon.org after saying he didn't vote for Obama. lol

          Originally Posted by tomw View Post

          You're welcome although J gets the credit...again!

          Wish I knew how to embed the video in the post, though...

          Thomas
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        • Profile picture of the author bizideas
          Smart or Stupid? I vote stupid....unless you are catering to a specific market that is almost entirely left or right and you know it because your marketing data tells you so. People can be as passionate about politics as they are religious views. That's almost like discussing politics in the workplace. In fact, many corporations try to discourage political chatter in the workplace.
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    • Profile picture of the author Ken Preuss
      Originally Posted by ss442 View Post

      I am amazed at how divided this country has become and how it effects people and it really makes me sad.
      Agreed............................................ ........!

      Ken
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    • Profile picture of the author archeopteryx
      spoken like a 100% true texan...guns up!
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  • Profile picture of the author wayfarer
    I'd have to agree with the general sentiment that it sounds like a pretty horrible idea. But hey, maybe the list was not producing very many leads for them anyway, so they decided to blow their wad on a futile bid for more votes for a candidate that badly needs it :p
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  • Profile picture of the author GarrieWilson
    Robin,

    Also, I'd be willing to bet if they endorced Obama in the email, you would think differently about it.

    Garrie
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    • Profile picture of the author RobInCharlotte
      Originally Posted by GarrieWilson View Post

      Robin,

      Also, I'd be willing to bet if they endorced Obama in the email, you would think differently about it.

      Garrie
      I'll take that bet.

      I'm not an Obama-bot. At all.


      Rob - In - Charlotte.
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    • Profile picture of the author RobInCharlotte
      Originally Posted by GarrieWilson View Post

      Robin,

      Also, I'd be willing to bet if they endorced Obama in the email, you would think differently about it.

      Garrie
      And that just goes to prove my point...let's say that's true. As a business practice - they just potentially pissed off 50% of their list - no?

      So you agree that it's a smart thing to do?
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  • Profile picture of the author tomw
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  • Profile picture of the author Frank Bruno
    Originally Posted by RobInCharlotte View Post

    So today I get a looong email from the guys are Area51Marketing.com endorsing John McCain for President and detailing the reason why, as well as breaking down the reasons they don't support Obama.

    Politics aside (I couldn't disagree with them more) - I don't think it's smart to spam your IM list espousing your political views. I could be wrong. But I didn't sign up to receive that type of info from them.

    I asked that I be removed from the list and they complied.

    What are your thoughts on sending political endorsements to your lists - smart or stupid?

    I received the same e-mail a little while ago I was thinking the same thing.

    In fact I even said out loud to myself "I can't believe they sent that,not smart"

    I would never mix political views with Internet marketing especially if it's completely off-topic and irrelevant.

    Frank Bruno
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  • Profile picture of the author anonymous123567
    Thomas that video is awesome!



    ps. tut tut Area 51
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  • Profile picture of the author erinwrites
    Regardless of what your political views are, inserting them into a mass e-mail isn't a good idea unless the subscribers to your list understood that you might use your list to promote your political viewpoint. If your subscribers signed up for something that was supposed to be free of partisan politics then the insertion of them (no matter which part of the aisle they endorse) probably won't be well received. It also isn't a good idea to insert your own political bias into your business place unless your bias is a central part of your business make-up.

    Just my two cents.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ron Douglas
    I agree, it's just too emotional an issue to pick a side and piss a large group of people off. But that doesn't stop the people in the Off Topic forum from posting their extreme views. Forget about what Long said, just look there for marketers making this mistake.
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    • Profile picture of the author admin
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      Originally Posted by Ron Douglas View Post

      I agree, it's just too emotional an issue to pick a side and piss a large group of people off. But that doesn't stop the people in the Off Topic forum from posting their extreme views. Forget about what Long said, just look there for marketers making this mistake.

      The off topic forum is the number 1 source that creates enemies between each other here. I think about killing it every day. Just haven't done it yet.
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      • Profile picture of the author Kurt
        Originally Posted by admin View Post

        The off topic forum is the number 1 source that creates enemies between each other here. I think about killing it every day. Just haven't done it yet.
        I agree. This is supposed to be a community that brings people together, not divide them.

        Unfortunately, I don't have the fortitude to not respond to some topics I am passionate about, when I feel the other side is putting down my beliefs.

        However, I don't think divisive topics have a place here, which should be meant to bring us together.

        Tomorrow, the day of our presidential election would be a great day to end it...Don't you think?
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        • Profile picture of the author MJ Schaefer
          Agreed.

          I remember back in 2004 reading an article on Brian Tracy's website where he endorsed George W. Bush. As a liberal, I felt as though his words were ostracising me.

          In an ideal world we'd all be intellectually detached enough to take that sort of thing on the chin, but it does echo for a lot of people (as this thread has shown).

          For what it's worth, I was very much into Tracy's stuff at the time, but I haven't gone near him since. It is very easy to argue that such actions make me weak, but it really isn't about me. It's about businesses managing to isolate their customers...
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      • Profile picture of the author valerieSONORA
        Originally Posted by admin View Post

        The off topic forum is the number 1 source that creates enemies between each other here. I think about killing it every day. Just haven't done it yet.
        The looney bin residents would like to know if the OT is really going to be deleted or not. There's a thread about that there and now I'm curious if our home is being taken away.
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    • Profile picture of the author affenpinscher
      Don't you think these guys are smart enough to know that their email would offend some people and they might lose some business?

      Imagine - IMs more concerned with America's future than their immediate pocketbook.

      I admire them for not being afraid to speak out.
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    • Profile picture of the author Kurt
      Originally Posted by Ron Douglas View Post

      I agree, it's just too emotional an issue to pick a side and piss a large group of people off. But that doesn't stop the people in the Off Topic forum from posting their extreme views. Forget about what Long said, just look there for marketers making this mistake.
      I believe there's a big difference between posting in the off topic forum and using business resources for politics.

      I post there and if I lose business, so be it, as I believe in the things that I post more than I need a few extra bucks.

      However, I would NEVER expect my customers to listen to my political beliefs and never post my beliefs in anything related to my business. IMO, there's a big difference in expressing my views and forcing my customers to be exposed to my views.

      For example, Warren Buffet publically supports Obama, which is fine. However, for him to contact his customer list and push his views on them isn't fine.
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      • Profile picture of the author Ron Douglas
        Originally Posted by Kurt View Post

        I believe there's a big difference between posting in the off topic forum and using business resources for politics.

        I post there and if I lose business, so be it, as I believe in the things that I post more than I need a few extra bucks.

        However, I would NEVER expect my customers to listen to my political beliefs and never post my beliefs in anything related to my business. IMO, there's a big difference in expressing my views and forcing my customers to be exposed to my views.

        For example, Warren Buffet publically supports Obama, which is fine. However, for him to contact his customer list and push his views on them isn't fine.
        I agree Kurt.

        I was refering more to extreme conspiracy theory ridiculous and insulting posts which may cause potential partners here to not want to do business with you.
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        • Profile picture of the author Kurt
          Originally Posted by Ron Douglas View Post

          I agree Kurt.

          I was refering more to extreme conspiracy theory ridiculous and insulting posts which may cause potential partners here to not want to do business with you.
          Hey Ron,

          You have a much more calm personality than I do, and you do a great job of saying your opinion without getting the other side riled up. I try to be more like that, but it just isn't me.

          And I agree about the conspiracy posts. I read one person's posts basically saying a father willingly put his young son on a plane that hit the WTC. If you're going to accuse someone of not only murdering their own son, but being a part of murdering 3000 others, you better have some pretty good evidence, and if you do, take it to the police, don't post on a forum.
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    • Profile picture of the author Kelly Verge
      Originally Posted by Ron Douglas View Post

      I agree, it's just too emotional an issue to pick a side and piss a large group of people off. But that doesn't stop the people in the Off Topic forum from posting their extreme views. Forget about what Long said, just look there for marketers making this mistake.
      But what about the "My public apology" pro-<a certain candidate> email you sent out to your list? I guess your actions and words don't align?
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      • Profile picture of the author Kay King
        Matthew - you are missing the point entirely.

        It's the same thing we've seen in the OT during this election (mostly from people who seldom visited the OT before)....

        When you start saying what OTHER PEOPLE SHOULD DO - you are over the line.

        "I think", "I decided", "as an entrepreneur, I believe" - those are fine as ways to state your own opinion (though I wouldn't email them to a list).

        When it becomes "they should", "you should"....you've gone too far. The next step is "I'm smart - you aren't" all based on your own belief. At that point people start defending with anything they can find and it's a slug fest of rude replies and right-fighter attitudes.

        It's a serious line that you cross in debate or discussion when you project your views to what someone else or another group "should" do. There are smart and thinking people on both sides of almost any "right-wrong", or "left-right" issue you'll find.

        kay
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        • Profile picture of the author matthewd
          Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

          When you start saying what OTHER PEOPLE SHOULD DO - you are over the line.
          Okay, I changed it from "shouldn't"
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          • Profile picture of the author Glenn Newsome
            Bottom line for us should be "will it cost me dearly, in terms of money". If you want to stand on your principles and feel that strongly about your political or religious views, then fine, but know that it may very well cost you.

            An easy way is to think of doing business offline person to person. You are trying to get a contract for thousands or (just place any figure here), and you start your political or religious rant for the day.
            If your views are different from the customer--you just lost that sale.
            If they are the same--still may have lost the sale because it had nothing to do with the topic at hand.
            You have got about a 50/50 chance of offending.

            It is also a touchy subject with co-workers in a regular job--and best left alone.
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            • Profile picture of the author W.P. Allen
              I for one applaud the sending of the email...

              It is too often today that we are afraid of speaking of what we believe in because of what others might think.
              So if you signed up for my newsletter on "Italian Recipes" and one strange, non-sequitur, newsletter I send you advocates a specific religious belief and states that anyone who doesn't believe in that specific religious belief is going to burn in the deep, dark, depths of the smoking underworld for all eternity, you would applaud this? Nonsense. Keep your OPINIONS and BELIEFS to yourself (unless someone actively seeks it out and agrees to listen).
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  • Profile picture of the author tomw
    To be fair, I actually agree with the OP. I guess I was guilty of the timeless schoolboy error of skimming it and the subsequent replies. However, in general I stand by what I said.

    Apologies...

    Thomas
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  • Profile picture of the author net-biz
    Just makes me want to scream!!!
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    Stop Guessing and Start Profiting... NicheMarketHottie.com

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  • Profile picture of the author Mark Riddle
    Warrior Forum
    Causes First US Presidential Loss

    Trend continues to devastate election Hopefuls



    Dateline Washington DC Nov 5th 2008

    For immediate release

    In surprise twist to this years election, an elite group of internet marketers known as "Warriors" declared today that no internet marketer should express their views to their mailing lists.

    Outraged founders of the Electronic Frontier Foundation Stated today,

    I reaffirm our stated Goals "When our freedoms in the networked world come under attack, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is the first line of defense." EFF broke new ground when it was founded in 1990.

    This seemly powerful group on international internet web marketers consists of a dedicated group of over 100 thousand members strong, ran by a secretive internet marketer that appears to have ties to Cuba.

    This group of internet savvy web marketers include the major players who wrote the rule book on everything from Adwords, E-Mail marketing, Domaining, Viral videos and the still secret "WAR ROOM"

    Conspiracy rumors are rampant.

    A Joint statement by the DNC and the RNC with the unusual inclusion of both the libertarian party and the green party States:

    "In these trying times, a nation that has the best and brightest minds, we feel and we jointly affirm, and encourage political expression in every form.

    We jointly believe that any attempt to disenfranchise any voter or voting block, through economic boycotting of any individual or group must be discouraged"

    This unified front is in hope that political expression, which is at the foundation of the freedoms of these United States of America, will continue to grow, and continue to be what expresses love of freedoms of content and expression, including the privilege to hear dissenting views in the marketplace.














    :rolleyes::rolleyes:




    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Signature
    Today isn't Yesterday, - Products are everywhere if your eyes are Tuned!
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  • Profile picture of the author 1stn4most
    In general this is a divisive time too much at stake for soo many people- I wouldn't add to the stratification so I would NOT use IM this way
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  • Profile picture of the author Pete Egeler
    Being much older than 98% of the posters here, I'll share a bit of wisdom from my Grandfather.

    "Never mix business with religion or politics. You will always end up a loser."

    Nuff said.

    Pete
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    • Profile picture of the author bgmacaw
      Originally Posted by Pete Egeler View Post

      "Never mix business with religion or politics. You will always end up a loser."
      True, although sometimes, as a business person, you may have to make a stand when a government becomes too meddlesome. For example, when they do something like imposing high taxes on tea and sugar imports. I'm sure though that taking a stand cost Sam Adams a few subscribers on his list.
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      • Profile picture of the author afitzwater
        Originally Posted by bgmacaw View Post

        True, although sometimes, as a business person, you may have to make a stand when a government becomes too meddlesome. For example, when they do something like imposing high taxes on tea and sugar imports. I'm sure though that taking a stand cost Sam Adams a few subscribers on his list.
        I like this statement; very well put. I think sometimes we need to remember that it is OK to stand up and fight for what we hold dear, what we believe in. There are wonderful examples of this in our history that have changed the course of our country. And, I agree that for a general rule there should not be a mix of business and politics...but never to the point you aren't willing to reclaim what is yours to fight for. Pushing your political views on people in a rude manner is obviously counter-productive and unethical.
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        • Profile picture of the author W.P. Allen
          People believe what they want to believe. They vote how they want to vote. No single, idiotic attempt to alter that belief, such as a newsletter in a mailing list, is going to convince anyone to think differently. People make up their minds quickly for various reasons and that is that. Anyone who thinks they can persuade people (who have already made up their mind) to their point of view is a fool. It's a simple matter of keeping your OPINIONs to yourself. We are here for business. Not to listen to someone spout off from a soapbox. So I'll vote for my candidate, you vote for your candidate. No one should know who I support, no one should know who you support. Because here, it doesn't matter.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Shainin
      Originally Posted by Pete Egeler View Post

      Being much older than 98% of the posters here, I'll share a bit of wisdom from my Grandfather.

      "Never mix business with religion or politics. You will always end up a loser."

      Nuff said.

      Pete
      My Grandfather told me this over 20 years ago and I'll always do my best to try and remember it. Don't care what others do at their end but I know not to mix biz with politics. However, sometimes I slip up in the off topic forum when it comes to the financial aspects of politics.

      I did think J-Mo's video was very creative to say the least and if done earlier probably would have gone really viral.

      Cheers,
      Dean
      Signature

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  • Profile picture of the author MeTellYou
    of course everything depends on how you do it, but I personally don't think it's a very good idea to do that kinda stuff. You could be making enemies without even knowing about it... for me it does not matter as I am not American, but I am sure they lost even more people as a result of that dumb move...

    Seba
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    • Profile picture of the author ShayB
      I don't feel that politics and business mix for a list.

      It might be appropriate for some lists, but not a business one.

      JMHO
      Signature
      "Fate protects fools, little children, and ships called Enterprise." ~Commander Riker
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      • Profile picture of the author Barbara Eyre
        Unless your niche (and mailing list) is politics or current events - you shouldn't mix your own personal politic beliefs or agenda's with your business. Or in this case, just send out a politic-only mass mailing.

        First off, roughly half your American subscribers might be voting for the other candidate, the only you're bashing. A good portion of your subscribers may not even be American, so for them, it was a wasted email and you lost giving your subscribers something of value to help them with their business.

        People subscribe to your lists for your business advice, to gleam how-tos and so forth. Not to find out your sexual, political, or religious preference in regards to heated topics.

        Definitely not a smart move. Glad I didn't receive such an email. It would have been trashed within the first few words that identified it as such.
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  • Profile picture of the author Paul Buckley
    I'm old so I remember when one's politics and religion were private affairs.
    Signature

    "Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something." -Plato

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  • Profile picture of the author matthewd
    I was going to send out an email to my list explaining why voting for Obama, as a business owner (which we all are) is the worst choice you can make... but decided against for the sheer fact that I am sure I will only fire up the ones that agree and piss off the ones that disagree.

    I was planning on actually tying it into making money and running a business and everything, so it would still be relevant... but ultimately I just decided not to. There was no real reason not to, except for I just don't feel like it right now.

    As for the Area51Marketing guys... I liked their email. They were spot on!
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  • Profile picture of the author Diana Lane
    It baffles me when people say that the forthcoming US elections don't matter because they're not American. I'm not American either, but the US makes up a large enough portion of the world and has a big enough influence on it for it to bother me just a bit who gets to run it next time.

    That aside, I think IM can gain a bit from the elections in that they've demonstrated how politicians market themselves effectively (and ineffectively, sometimes!), but as for taking a political stance in IM, that's madness. What can subscribers expect next - believe in this God? Support that football team? I'd have unsubscribed too.

    Maybe the Off Topic forum can exist with a blanket ban on politics and religion. And sport. And topics
    Signature

    Plot short fiction, long fiction, even outline non-fiction * Edit the question prompts to suit your genre * Easily export text and image files for use with your word processor or Scrivener.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rich_Newell
    I am soooooo tired of politics and the mud slinging. Whatever president we have next year will push his own agenda, congress will fight back and the Supreme Court will overturn.

    That doesn't mean that I am staying out of the fight. I voted already.

    I would prefer that I am not bombarded by the messages about who is worse. Especially when I am learning about market online.

    The best thing that we can do is to remember that the people, like us, come up with solutions to the operations of the country. Don't be a follower! Be a leader.
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    Rich Newell
    I would rather have 1% of 100 people than to have 100% of 1 person. Andrew Carnegie
    Newbies - Make Money Online

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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      I got that email, and I unsubscribed.

      I sent a lot of email to my subscribers about this election, and I defy anyone to read it and tell me who I'm voting for based on it. Or to show me any effort to convince them of who they should vote for. That's not what people signed up for.

      If someone put something like that on a blog, I'd consider it appropriate. I don't think it is in an email to a list that was supposed to be about business.

      Maybe if it had focused on the economic impact they saw as a consequence of each candidate's victory. The problem with that is that it's not only tough to predict, it doesn't fit their assumptions.

      That said, I didn't unsubscribe because they endorsed someone. I unsubscribed because of the way they did it. The email was laced with distortions and bad slogans. Exactly the sort of condescending talk that we hear both sides accusing the other of using.

      It was also inexcusably insulting. To Obama supporters for obvious reasons. More to the point, any serious thinking person should find the foolish insults and sloppy thinking offensive as a tool of persuasion.

      They have the right to send it. I have the right to tell them to go to hell.


      Paul
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      .
      Stop by Paul's Pub - my little hangout on Facebook.

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  • Profile picture of the author Alan Petersen
    LOL this ensured you didn't keep politics aside:

    Politics aside (I couldn't disagree with them more)
    But anyway, I do agree with you 100%. Same thing with Twitter that annoys me. Most of the folks on twitter I follow are business related. I don't really care about their political beliefs or who they're going to vote. I un-follow those who get too preachy on political issues. I haven't received any political "endorsements" from any of the lists I'm on but that would be an unsubscribe for me regardless of whether ro not I agree with the polictal message.

    I'm so glad this election is almost over! Two years is too freaking long to run for office!
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  • Profile picture of the author Loren Woirhaye
    it's the desperation of the Area 51 move that
    I thought was dumb.

    From a selling standpoint the head of the letter was
    all about them and their interests which they professed
    as "Libertarian" - and what followed struck me as
    desperate, defamatory propaganda. Of course
    I didn't read much of it - because they gave away
    their hand at the start.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ernie Lo
    I personally cant stand...political debates...

    It's just a sad chance for people to feel important and think their vote/opinion actually means something....wake up call.

    No president cares about YOU....you're just another number.

    Whichever president is chosen, they're not going to make things better....the world gets worse every single year.

    Think back to the 70's 80's and even the 90's and compare it to the complicated, narrow minded world we live in today.

    Just be thankful that Mr Bush will be gone soon...but I personally wouldn't be jumping in the air if my wanted President won this election..its a bleak future.
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    • Profile picture of the author traces2757
      Originally Posted by Ernie Lonardo View Post

      I personally cant stand...political debates...

      It's just a sad chance for people to feel important and think their vote/opinion actually means something....wake up call.

      No president cares about YOU....you're just another number.

      Whichever president is chosen, they're not going to make things better....the world gets worse every single year.

      Think back to the 70's 80's and even the 90's and compare it to the complicated, narrow minded world we live in today.

      Just be thankful that Mr Bush will be gone soon...but I personally wouldn't be jumping in the air if my wanted President won this election..its a bleak future.
      I can understand being discouraged but...how is the cynicism and pessimism working out for you?

      When we become apathetic because we believe nothing we do will change anything, then of course we won't change anything--because we'll do nothing.

      Voting and campaigning (responsibly) for whomever you want for president is only one aspect of affecting the world around us. Call me idealistic, but I think I'll choose positive action over apathy. It takes a bit of commitment, but IM definitely teaches you that!
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  • Profile picture of the author BrianMcLeod
    The last thing I want / need / respect is for another marketer to presume that I am so woefully uninformed that I need for them to abandon the explicit purpose of our "relationship" -- that is to say "I like your stuff, mail me your pitches" -- in favor of educating me about politics.

    Yeah, dude... That's what's been missing all this time for me... Political proselytization from internet marketers...

    How presumptuous and in this particular case poorly targeted.

    Mike and David should know better. These guys are exceptional marketers and I was dumbfounded, to be completely honest. Maybe they just wanted to prune their list?

    And it's not that I object to hearing your personal, intellectually stimulating and well-reasoned thoughts on politics that may happen to be diametrically opposed to my own -- even in a completely off-topic way. That's part of the "knowing you" part of being subscribed to your list.

    I am far from a knee-jerk reactionary.

    But, frankly, this mailing (that I got twice no less) was little more than a refried Drudge Report which I read every day already.

    FAIL.

    Brian
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  • Profile picture of the author valerieSONORA
    That's probably the fastest way to get most your list to unsubscribe. Terrible, terrible, terrible. Stupid, stupid, stupid. The only way anyone should email anything political to their list is if it's a political list. An IM list? Don't even touch anything political.
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    • Profile picture of the author Scott Lundergan
      The only way I would consider ever mixing politics with IM is what Jason Moffat did on his blog.

      That page had so many responses and emotions on it without Jason having to shove any political information to them, as they all did it themselves and because marketers have opinions and tell stories, all kinds of people chime in with something to say.

      Just like everyone has an opinion, so comes the Tuesday vote
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    • Profile picture of the author Angela V. Edwards
      Originally Posted by annoyedgirl View Post

      That's probably the fastest way to get most your list to unsubscribe. Terrible, terrible, terrible. Stupid, stupid, stupid. The only way anyone should email anything political to their list is if it's a political list. An IM list? Don't even touch anything political.

      I was just going to reply and then I spotted your post. I couldn't have said it better, myself.
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      • Profile picture of the author valerieSONORA
        Originally Posted by Angela V. Edwards View Post

        I was just going to reply and then I spotted your post. I couldn't have said it better, myself.
        Great minds think alike!!
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  • Profile picture of the author theVFusionGroup
    Banned
    [DELETED]
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    • Profile picture of the author davebo
      Banned
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      • Profile picture of the author davebo
        Banned
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  • Profile picture of the author Black Hat Cat
    Banned
    Originally Posted by RobInCharlotte View Post

    So today I get a looong email from the guys are Area51Marketing.com endorsing John McCain for President and detailing the reason why, as well as breaking down the reasons they don't support Obama.

    Politics aside (I couldn't disagree with them more) - I don't think it's smart to spam your IM list espousing your political views. I could be wrong. But I didn't sign up to receive that type of info from them.

    I asked that I be removed from the list and they complied.

    What are your thoughts on sending political endorsements to your lists - smart or stupid?
    Well, it's a good way to get the clueless, the morons and the idiots off your list. Of course, they're probably passing up a lot of money though, because clearly some folks will buy anything, lol.
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    • Profile picture of the author BrianMcLeod
      Originally Posted by blackhatcat View Post

      Well, it's a good way to get the clueless, the morons and the idiots off your list.
      Yeah... It really must suck to have a retard like me on your list.

      Sheesh.
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      • Profile picture of the author matthewd
        Originally Posted by LoudMac View Post

        Yeah... It really must suck to have a retard like me on your list.

        Sheesh.
        That's not very Politically Correct Liberal of you!

        Paul,

        Maybe it is a different discussion, but everything they said was the truth.

        I am sure you are right and it does not matter to him that you will not deal with him in the future... I would assume they weighed this before proceeding with the mailing.

        I feel that this is not as near off-topic of an email as everyone says... It is an incredibly important decision, no matter what "niche" you sign up for.

        I believe it is very relevant to us IMers... Especially with us being entrepreneurs, we need to weigh the consequences of having Obama in office.
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        • Profile picture of the author BrianMcLeod
          Originally Posted by matthewd View Post

          That's not very Politically Correct Liberal of you!
          Matthew, I don't even know you.

          So, how exactly is it that you assume that I'm a "Politically Correct Liberal"?

          If you knew how far off the mark you actually were you'd laugh.

          This is precisely the reason why politics are poisonous to marketing.

          If we were talking about copywriting or licensing I am quite certain both your tone and your words would be a lot more respectful.

          Brian
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  • Profile picture of the author matthewd
    It was a joke brother!
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    • Profile picture of the author BrianMcLeod
      Originally Posted by matthewd View Post

      It was a joke brother!
      It's cool, Matthew.

      I'm not pissed.

      You have a very rigid one-dimensional view of your political opposites. More importantly, it is an INACCURATE one-dimensional view based on presumptions and personal bias.

      In marketing terms, that kind of presumptive tunnel vision manifests in something worse than poor response -- it results in NEGATIVE response.

      Now there are times and reasons for "polarizing" your message. It can be effective for creating a surge of action and eliminating "wood" from your house list. But that type of radical activity is more of a specific plan in action.

      My point remains.. As marketers, "taking one for the team" in this way... by spamming your marketing list with a partisan political pitch on the day before a monumental national election... only makes you a martyr. Martyrdom is dumb because it is unprofitable and only serves to alienate people you otherwise had "in your pocket", opening your mail.

      Best,

      Brian
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  • Profile picture of the author MikeLantz
    I for one applaud the sending of the email...

    It is too often today that we are afraid of speaking of what we believe in because of what others might think.

    Now, I realize that marketing is a lot about image and portraying the message that those who you are talking to want to hear. Even more reason to give props to the Area 51 guys.

    Listen, I see many Warriors and IMers supporting a different candidate than I am in this election. That does not mean that I will discount everything they say in the future. Why would it?

    If it affects you that way, perhaps you need to ask yourself if your beliefs are really so shallow that a few comments by others make you so defensive.

    I am more offended when I get the same email 3 times from a marketer because they can't figure out how to consolidate their lists.

    I am more annoyed in seeing those who are seen as top marketers promoting lame "me too" products that I have seen many times before.

    These are reasons I may unsubscribe from a list. But I certainly will not unsubscribe from a list because someone took some courage and shared something that they strongly believe in, regardless of my opinion on that matter.

    So, perhaps if you unsubscribed because of this email, the guys who sent it got exactly what they wanted, anyway.

    Mike
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    • Profile picture of the author ExRat
      Hi,

      Are Brits allowed to comment here?

      Re: Mixing IM & Politics - Not Smart
      Unless you're desperate for exposure through notoriety.

      Hi Mike,

      It is too often today that we are afraid of speaking of what we believe in because of what others might think.
      As has been pointed out, unless these people signed up to the list to receive the author's opinion on political issues, then not only are they completely off topic but they are demonstrating bad form for a company with 'marketing' in their company name.

      It's helpful of you all to give us a free lesson in 'how to push your buttons' though...

      Signature


      Roger Davis

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    • Profile picture of the author Rachel Rofe
      Originally Posted by MikeLantz View Post

      I for one applaud the sending of the email...

      It is too often today that we are afraid of speaking of what we believe in because of what others might think.

      Now, I realize that marketing is a lot about image and portraying the message that those who you are talking to want to hear. Even more reason to give props to the Area 51 guys.

      Listen, I see many Warriors and IMers supporting a different candidate than I am in this election. That does not mean that I will discount everything they say in the future. Why would it?

      If it affects you that way, perhaps you need to ask yourself if your beliefs are really so shallow that a few comments by others make you so defensive.

      I am more offended when I get the same email 3 times from a marketer because they can't figure out how to consolidate their lists.

      I am more annoyed in seeing those who are seen as top marketers promoting lame "me too" products that I have seen many times before.

      These are reasons I may unsubscribe from a list. But I certainly will not unsubscribe from a list because someone took some courage and shared something that they strongly believe in, regardless of my opinion on that matter.

      So, perhaps if you unsubscribed because of this email, the guys who sent it got exactly what they wanted, anyway.

      Mike
      Was about to post something similar, but you articulated it perfectly. Brilliant post.
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      • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
        Being a Brit, I have no axe to grind for either candidate, but I am a bit baffled as to how this action could be described as "courageous" or "standing up for your beliefs".

        I can hear dozens of one-sided opinions every night in my local bar.

        The point is, if I sign up for your internet marketing newsletter, it would be reasonable for you to assume that I'd like to hear your views on search engine optimization.

        It would be highly presumptuous and not a little condescending of you to assume that I need to be educated about politics.


        Frank
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    • Profile picture of the author Alan Petersen
      Originally Posted by MikeLantz View Post

      I for one applaud the sending of the email...

      It is too often today that we are afraid of speaking of what we believe in because of what others might think.

      Now, I realize that marketing is a lot about image and portraying the message that those who you are talking to want to hear. Even more reason to give props to the Area 51 guys.

      Listen, I see many Warriors and IMers supporting a different candidate than I am in this election. That does not mean that I will discount everything they say in the future. Why would it?

      If it affects you that way, perhaps you need to ask yourself if your beliefs are really so shallow that a few comments by others make you so defensive.

      I am more offended when I get the same email 3 times from a marketer because they can't figure out how to consolidate their lists.

      I am more annoyed in seeing those who are seen as top marketers promoting lame "me too" products that I have seen many times before.

      These are reasons I may unsubscribe from a list. But I certainly will not unsubscribe from a list because someone took some courage and shared something that they strongly believe in, regardless of my opinion on that matter.

      So, perhaps if you unsubscribed because of this email, the guys who sent it got exactly what they wanted, anyway.

      Mike
      Mike,

      It's not about being afraid of speaking your mind but of respecting your list. It's a bit presumptuous to believe that because they signed up for a marketing/business related list that those subscribers care about your political leanings or who they're endorsing for office.

      I wasn't on these persons list and I haven't received any such emails from the lists I'm on but if I sign up for a newsletter about Internet marketing, product creation, etc. that is what I want to read about not your political, religious, et al. musings.

      We've been bombarded with info for two years during this campaign. The two major candidates have spent over $2 billion to get their message out. So if I sign up for a marketing newsletter that's what I want---news about marketing.

      In the same token if I signed up for a political oriented newsletter and I got emails about how to grow my lists by 10,000 subscribers in 3 days, I would be like WTF? So again--to me it's just that folks should respect their list and provide them the content they signed up for. Paul Myers did a good job of giving his emails a political slant without prophesizing about who to vote for--he still kept it about business.
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  • Profile picture of the author matthewd
    Brian,

    You can tell from what little I have said that I have a "very rigid one-dimensional view of my political opposites?"

    So far, I think the only thing I have said is that entrepreneurs are better off to not vote for Obama... I did not say anything negative towards them except for just making little joke to you about political correctness.

    If you are saying I have that negative tunnel vision which results in NEGATIVE response... you would be wrong too. I don't know about the whole tunnel vision part, but I seem to be getting a pretty good response in my marketing efforts.

    The main point is, after today... I am pretty positive that we are going to find out that the man I do not want to win is going to win. So, let us get our emails and posts in while we still can. And in anticipation of his win, I went ahead and ordered a book last night about lowering my taxes.
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    • Profile picture of the author Loren Woirhaye
      Originally Posted by matthewd View Post

      Brian,



      So far, I think the only thing I have said is that entrepreneurs shouldn't vote for Obama... I did not say anything negative towards them except for just making little joke to you about political correctness.
      I think there is hubris in your thinking - common to extremists. There are thinking,
      smart, informed people on both sides of the aisle.
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      • Profile picture of the author matthewd
        Originally Posted by Loren Woirhaye View Post

        I think there is hubris in your thinking - common to extremists. There are thinking,
        smart, informed people on both sides of the aisle.
        Did I ever say their were not smart people on both sides?

        I have said much too little to even get an idea if there is or is not "hubris" in my thinking.

        I think you are jumping to conclusions too quickly - common to extremists.
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  • Profile picture of the author iw433
    If I sign up for a marketing list then that is what I expect to get, not political opinions.
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    Bill Skywalker Edwards
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  • Profile picture of the author Floyd Bogart
    Is important to remember that Freedom of Speech
    does not mean Freedom from Consequences.

    If we are talking about the same guy here, I had
    a great deal of respect for this guy until I read some
    of his right wing rants. And I am politically neutral...

    I also know of customers of his that are not just
    unsubscribing but have started asking for refunds
    due to the content. (can't say I agree with that!)

    Been guilty of expressing my own opinions on occassion,
    but am always willing to listen to someone else's as well.
    If another opinion doesn't track logically, I may point that
    out to be sure they are aware of the inconsistency.
    (Samuel Johnson and all that)

    Am a firm believer in Disagreeing without being Disagreeable.

    My 2 cents...
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  • Profile picture of the author Floyd Bogart
    It also pays big dividends to be respectful of
    people with differing viewpoints from your own.

    I respect many people with other opinions, but
    have trouble doing so with people that cannot
    consider other's perspective as valid.

    Would be pretty easy to name a couple of topics
    here, but that would just end up with people
    squabbling about these individual issues.

    I like it when people and politicians talk about
    raising the level of debate on an issue, as you
    can tell that even if they disagree with you, they
    at least have some interest in addressing what
    your own positions are.
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  • Profile picture of the author lvcjmac
    I just don't see any circumstance where it makes sense to comment to your list/subscribers etc. by mentioning either politics or religion. They are both such divisive topics.

    The internet is a global phenomenon, and your subscribers are located around the globe. I think it's safe to say that your list will having differing views and beliefs.

    I am open minded enough to listen to another's point of view and move forward. I don't know if I would include my ability to filter information as something everyone possesses. In the office I work in, there are quite a few hammerhead's who aren't able to see a differing point of view.

    I'll go out on a limb, but I'm guessing my list also includes a pretty large group of hammerheads. It's hard building up a list of faithful followers, why risk screwing it up?
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    • Profile picture of the author ShayB
      I could see sending out a general "Be sure to vote" email to your list. (Like anyone needs a reminder that today is Election Day - LOL)

      I could see a general email sent out to remind your list of the sacrifices made so we could have the privilege of voting.

      But I cannot fathom sending out a "Vote for >insert candidate here<" email. To me, that is crossing the line.

      Same thing for the holidays - I could see a "General holiday good wishes" email. But either you send out an email for each holiday (Christmas, Hannukah [I probably spelled that wrong, sorry], Kwanzaa, and Yule), or send a general one for all of them together.

      JMHO
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Matthew,

      I absolutely agree that this is an important vote. There are a lot of things involved that haven't really been discussed in the media, too. And I don't mean "the msm." I mean, almost not at all, anywhere.

      Kay,

      Like Garrie, I've been on both sides of the, "Hmmm. I didn't know that. That changes things," discussion. The most recent was last evening.

      It only happens when you're actually focused on the real issues, and not the labels, and when you have (not fake) real respect for the person with whom you're talking, even if you think they're completely and utterly wrong.

      Mike,
      It is too often today that we are afraid of speaking of what we believe in because of what others might think.
      Hardly a challenge I face, dude.

      My personal objection, as I stated, is primarily that he was so insulting and dismissive of one side of a complex discussion, and so disdainful of the intelligence of his readers, regardless of their position on the election.
      Listen, I see many Warriors and IMers supporting a different candidate than I am in this election. That does not mean that I will discount everything they say in the future. Why would it?
      It shouldn't. Not as long as they don't use sloppy thinking to support their positions, and insults to dismiss anyone who disagrees with them.

      Here are Mike's comments in the most insulting section of the email in question:
      I should add that McCain supporters should also step outside of the "rooting for your guy" mentality long enough to understand Obama voters, as it will make you more persuasive.

      Here are potential reasons that people vote for Obama:

      - They feel good about the guy.

      - They believe that Bush was extremely bad and that McCain would be similar.

      - They have racial pride "I want to be able to tell my son that they can be president just like Obama," or racial guilt.

      - They feel a sort of team mentality as a Democrat or Liberal, much like a Phillies or Rays fan might love their team and demonize the other team. They may know somebody who is a Republican that they deeply disrespect or don't like, and they project that person onto John McCain and/or Sarah Palin.

      - They are hysterically afraid that Sarah Palin will take away legal abortions and possibly reinstate the Inquisition, just like she has done in Alaska (that last part about Alaska is a joke, for all you guys who get your news exclusively from MSNBC).

      - They feel that protecting the environment to any degree, no matter how small, is worth virtually any cost, even mass human suffering.

      - They may be anti-religious, such as from a bad experience with being raised by religious parents who pushed the religion in an authoritarian way. While this bears no direct connection to McCain or Obama, the general Dem and GOP brands result in such a person leaning Democrat. To this person, I would reiterate that it is Obama who is by far the more authoritarian candidate, in my opinion.

      - They feel a scarcity mentality towards life, and believe that, by somebody else being rich, it makes them have less. They take comfort in other peoples' suffering and loss, and therefore buy into the class warfare and income redistribution philosophy.

      - And often, it is a combination of the above.
      Mike Long is a very intelligent man. It doesn't seem possible to me that he's unaware that there are other reasons for choosing a candidate, or that, with his experience, he could have written something like this and not known it was insulting.

      Not all of those comments are insulting, of course. Taken in totality, though, this is one of the rudest messages I've ever seen sent to a group of mostly unknown folks by someone who wasn't flat out spamming.

      The same day, I got an email that Yanik sent to one of his lists, with a subject line that mentioned voting. I opened that expecting an endorsemnt (or a clever use of the word to get attention), and was curious about who he was voting for. He didn't say, but if he had, I'm sure I'd have found it as thoughtful and respectful as one expects of him.

      Like I said, it's Mike's right to send the email. If he's going to be abusive, it's my right to tell him to go to hell.


      Paul
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  • Profile picture of the author IMChick
    IM lists need to have only IM content sent to them. You can argue that dog owners can use cat food because a very high percentage of them also have cats in the same household. That to me is a stretch, whether it is for the greater good or not.

    My take on this is that a business owner, or even a key person representing a business, can not let their personal feelings all hang out, even though they really really think they're doing a great service.

    This comes from many years of family businesses located in a small community. People are odd about this type of thing with people in visible positions, i.e. business owners--and you will alienate at least half of your customer base every time you step over the line into politically charged or personal whatevers.

    Take a very neutral stand and withhold your personal opinion, be it on the national political climate or the local boneheads at the school board (local or state level). Even though holding it in makes you want to pop!

    And this is my 100th post! Woo hoo!
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  • That's a really, really bad idea. It's a great way to alienate your subscribers and just plain piss people off. I'm surprised that anyone with half a brain would actually do this.

    Besides, anyone intelligent enough to see through the massive corporate propaganda knows that both candidates are essentially gangsters representing two different factions of the business party. This has been confirmed many, many times, by many scholars, and over many years and,yet, it is always systematically ignored every election year (which is no easy task given the shear volume of evidence).

    Face it, our media and political system is a disgrace.
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    • Profile picture of the author Midas3 Consulting
      Dire decision, even if they were supporting the candidate I preferred it would be an awful decision, never ever bring politics into IM.
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  • Profile picture of the author Gary Huynh
    I agree that business and politics/religion should not be mixed since people have such strong views with the issues. It would take more than a simple blog post or email to change people's views.

    I'm sure the guys who send emails to their list to garner support for their candidate knew they would upset many people. Maybe they hate Obama so much that they didn't want any of his supporters on their list.

    Or maybe they're so passionate about their views that they didn't see the potential outcome of their actions.
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    • Profile picture of the author jjpmarketing
      This is what is really dangerous about the IM aspects of it. This is only the beginning of things to come. The political groups and politicians who like to play dirty bank on people's ignorance. They hope by sending emails and making phone calls stating only a portion of a candidate's views, that it will scare voters into voting for the other candidate.

      The dirtier the politician and the group, the more it will move towards fabrication of facts like:

      "Republicans vote on Tuesday, and Democrats vote on Wednesday".

      "You will go to hell if you vote for so and so"

      "You will get arrested for voting if you have a parking ticket"

      Then there is all of the spoofing of official emails stating similar information. There will have to be some standards created to protect the public from these types of election tactics.

      They will need to put something in place saying get your voting information only from this location, and don't trust anything else you hear... at least for the logistical parts of the voting process.

      As for blatant lies about a candidates views... there needs to be much stiffer penalties for folks making statements about a candidates policies and views to the masses, be it an email list, phone list, or even a gathering that exceeds a certain number of people.

      It doesn't matter who you voted for. Voters need to know the facts about a candidates views or policies, and not be publicly misinformed by these political groups with fabrications of the facts or a stretched truth taken out of context.

      To me doing that would be a form of political terrorism... or espionage... or whatever word would articulate that idea best.


      But to stay on topic, if you mix business with politics, it will only lead to trouble. Because then you will have to know every view of every person you endorse, as well as the views of every person they have endorsed or associated with. On top of that you will still run into issues with upsetting a major portion of your clients or people on your list, because most people are very passionate about the person(s) they support in elections. Disagree with them on that, and they may boycott you for supporting the other guy. While, if you keep your mouth shut about who you support, then you won't alienate yourself from any member of your list, no matter how conservative or liberal they may be.
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  • Profile picture of the author Darth Executor
    I'd unsubscribe from any IMer who tries to sell me the candidate I despise. If they're pimping my candidate then I don't care. As such, can someone give me a link to the IM list in the op?


    PS: I wouldn't try to sell a candidate to my list, simply because I want to fleece everybody, regardless of political affiliation.
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  • Profile picture of the author bobsstuff
    I have a friend with a fairly popular blog in his niche.
    He lost readers when he talked politics.
    He lost readers when he talked religion
    He probably lost readers when McCain ads started showing up on his pages.
    His adsense income was over $1200 a month and has dropped to under $600.
    This is partly due to google and the economy, but I am sure it is partly due to his comments and actions in his blog.
    I don't say who I voted for online. I do no discuss religion or religious ideals. I cannot afford to lose income to my mistakes. Google changes are bad enough.
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    Bob Hale
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  • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
    Originally Posted by RobInCharlotte View Post

    So today I get a looong email from the guys are Area51Marketing.com endorsing John McCain for President and detailing the reason why, as well as breaking down the reasons they don't support Obama.

    Politics aside (I couldn't disagree with them more) - I don't think it's smart to spam your IM list espousing your political views. I could be wrong. But I didn't sign up to receive that type of info from them.

    I asked that I be removed from the list and they complied.

    What are your thoughts on sending political endorsements to your lists - smart or stupid?
    Would you have been so upset had you received a political endorsement for the candidate you favor?

    Personally, I wouldn't do it for only one reason...

    By this point in the campaign, most people

    a) have already made up their minds, so anything I say won't accomplish anything and
    b) are so sick of campaign rhetoric that just mentioning the election gets a sigh and rolled eyes:rolleyes: or steam from the ears .

    That said, I don't hold that single email against them. I would rather deal with a single email passionately endorsing a candidate every fourth year than a barrage of cookie cutter endorsements for questionable products on daily basis. Whether I agreed with them or not doesn't matter; either way I learned more about them.
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Paul, thanks for posting that excerpt. I'd already deleted the email after skimming it last night. I'd already taken advantage of Florida's early voting, so nothing in it was going to alter my vote anyway. And I'm another vote for putting the 'secret' back in secret ballot...

      And I find myself agreeing with you about the execution of the letter. That's the same kind of wild-eyed nonsense that makes me sure that Barbra Streisand's initials are not a coincidence.

      Now, looking at that email purely from an IM standpoint, look at the buzz they worked up. Like another poster, I haven't heard from these guys in months. I'd forgotten I was on their list at all, and my first thought was "damn spammers" until I recognized the name.

      Yes, they may have alienated a significant portion of their list. They've also garnered positive feelings from a significant portion. This thread is an example of that.

      If they come back with an offer, a significant portion of their list will say, Oh, yeah, these are the guys who stuck up for my guy, and maybe read the offer with a more open to buy attitude. Which puts them ahead of having a much larger, and colder, list who don't remember even signing up.

      Reviving a list with a political rant rather than a commercial offer takes them out of the realm of Unsolicited Commercial Email...

      They might be crazy. Or crazy like a fox...
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  • Profile picture of the author The Wanderer
    Originally Posted by JohnMcCabe View Post

    ...Yes, they may have alienated a significant portion of their list. They've also garnered positive feelings from a significant portion. This thread is an example of that.

    If they come back with an offer, a significant portion of their list will say, Oh, yeah, these are the guys who stuck up for my guy, and maybe read the offer with a more open to buy attitude. Which puts them ahead of having a much larger, and colder, list who don't remember even signing up.

    Reviving a list with a political rant rather than a commercial offer takes them out of the realm of Unsolicited Commercial Email...

    They might be crazy. Or crazy like a fox...
    Now that's a very interesting possibility I wouldn't have thought of... If you combined that with publicizing your action on your website or in forums like this you might end up with a following who would buy all your products based on their agreement with your opinions. There are some religious and ethnic groups that do this very effectively-- making people feel that they have to buy from you to 'support a fellow____'. Of course that works best if you come from a marginalized group which is somewhat ostracized by the mainstream of society.

    Unfortunately for the writers of this e-mail (if this was their plan), I don't think that is true of McCain supporters as a whole. I've voted for both parties in my time and I was very pleased in this race to have two candidates that I respected to choose from. The people I didn't respect were the ones on both sides who thought that they could best support their candidates by attacking the other guy. And, of course, I had even less respect for those who attacked the SUPPORTERS of the other guy...

    Compare this 'strategy' (if it is one) to what Paul did in his newsletter. After running his series on the election (in which he didn't state his preference) he got replies from people who 'knew' that he was supporting McCain-- and the same number convinced he was supporting Obama. The many who like and respect Paul tended to assume he agreed with them. The many who have never given any thought to their own emotional 'buttons' and how they get pushed assumed that he was for the candidate they OPPOSED because he had positive statements about both. (The positive statements for their own candidate they overlooked as simple 'fact' while focusing on the positive statements for the opposing candidate as a sign of support.) This is fascinating stuff for anyone at all interested in how our minds (and feelings) work-- and vital for anyone who's in marketing.
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Originally Posted by The Wanderer View Post

      Now that's a very interesting possibility I wouldn't have thought of... If you combined that with publicizing your action on your website or in forums like this you might end up with a following who would buy all your products based on their agreement with your opinions. There are some religious and ethnic groups that do this very effectively-- making people feel that they have to buy from you to 'support a fellow____'. Of course that works best if you come from a marginalized group which is somewhat ostracized by the mainstream of society.

      Unfortunately for the writers of this e-mail (if this was their plan), I don't think that is true of McCain supporters as a whole. I've voted for both parties in my time and I was very pleased in this race to have two candidates that I respected to choose from. The people I didn't respect were the ones on both sides who thought that they could best support their candidates by attacking the other guy. And, of course, I had even less respect for those who attacked the SUPPORTERS of the other guy...

      ... This is fascinating stuff for anyone at all interested in how our minds (and feelings) work-- and vital for anyone who's in marketing.
      It works for Rush Limbaugh. He's parlayed his shtick into a syndicated radio audience 20 million strong. The 'Dittoheads' have made Rush one of the highest paid pitchmen in the country, rivaling even Paul Harvey.

      Ask people familiar with Limbaugh. If they recognize his name at all, they're very likely to have an opinion about the guy. The opinions tend to be very strong, either people love him or hate him.

      The people who love him listen to his show regularly, buy what he endorses, and many move up the product ladder to his paid newsletter and membership site for more access.

      The people who hate him listen to his show for ammunition, and to make sure they don't miss a chance to attack him.

      Could the Area51 guys be working a similar strategy?
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve Faber
    It would be a great way to prune your list to include a higher percentage of people with a certain political outlook. There could be a marketing reason for doing that, if you were going to begin marketing a product / service that would appeal much more to those with the aforementioned views.
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