If your email marketing provider (Constant Contact, Fishbowl, Emma, or – our Raleighwood Media Group exclusive email marketing provider – iContact.com) does not provide an opportunity to specify your “Reply-To” email address, you should be dumping them immediately for one who does.
I personally can attest that iContact.com does let you customize this very important part of your marketing emails. Never, never, never does a client email go out that does not have a “Reply-To” email address set up as part of their campaign.
Why is this so important, you may ask?
Habit – Because the “reply” function has become the ingrained way in all of us to respond to an email. I mean… it just kind of makes sense, right?
I, for one, am highly likely to hit “reply” in a heart beat, but I may not be paying the closest attention as to where that email message is going. Unfortunately, messages I send in response to commercial email often “bounce back” since the message got sent to an email address that didn’t actually exist. And if I’m doing it, I know others are, too.
Ease of Use – If you are encouraging your customers to contact you by email at any point in your marketing, chances are the “reply” function is going to be the easiest way for them to do so. As email users, we have become accustomed to the ability to hit reply and correspond in return to our original emailer. If your email marketing service does not allow you to set your own email address as the “Reply to” address, they are taking away your ability to communicate as we’ve all become accustomed to.
Keep It Simple, Simon! – As one of my favorite clients (Mandy, owner of Swagger Gifts) will tell you, you must make participation and communication between customer and business EASY and CLEAR AS DAY, or people will screw it up. GUARANTEED.
Communication is Key – It could tarnish your reputation, really! If the reply aimed at you happens to end up in the black hole of emails (ie: some automated email address that your email marketing company uses) instead of getting directly to you, you run the serious risk of looking to your audience as the type of business or individual that ignores, or doesn’t return, email inquiries. No self-respecting business or emailer wants to be “that guy”, right?
Questions? Feel free to ask!