Monday, December 19, 2011

Amazon and Permission Marketing

I got an e-mail from Amazon today asking me to rate my experience with one of their sellers.  I'm usually happy to give my feedback, but there are a few things that serve to dissuade me from doing feedback for a vendor or anyone else.   Foremost of my peeves are sellers that ask for "a minute" and then proceed to ask a myriad of questions on every aspect of the exchange all the while never telling you how many questions are left, and using a vague clock or status bar to show your progress.  I'm sure these retailers are questioning why there are so many abandoned questionnaires.  "If only they'd finish all 243 questions, we'd have the answer to everything."

Asking a few pointed questions and getting good answers on a few questions is better than bad data on many questions.  Amazon does it right in this instance.  They ask 3 questions, a rating and a comment.

What Amazon fails here at is requiring the comment which appears to be a public proclamation about the seller.  It moves from How did the seller do?  to Tell others about them."

I'm happy to give you feedback on your product, service, transactions and the like (I'm rarely short of an opinion).   However, requiring me to "tell others" in order to do that is inappropriate.  Amazon would not allow me to submit my response as is because the text field is blank.  I was tempted to make snarky comments about the inappropriateness of requiring the field, but it's not really the seller's fault.

How many people feel compelled to complete that box?  "What?  I can't submit my three responses until I give some feedback on that field?  Okay then."

What consumers need to remember is that we're part of that transaction too.  Seth Godin wrote about Permission Marketing and how it's about engagement with consumers and getting permission to market to them.   The flip side of that coin is us, as consumers, giving permission.  When a business or on line retailer doesn't ask permission, don't give it.  If they interrupt by spamming you, subscribe you to a newsletter without your permission, sell your information or try to force you to give a response when its you doing the favor, walk away.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Timberland Zipable Trail Shoes

I love the design, but am left a bit wanting.   I want them to either zip together, zip to each other or zip with the sole side in or both.  Zip them together with the soles facing each other.   The video has you zip them up and hang off the outside of your pack, so it makes sense to zip the cloth inside, but for storing inside your pack, you'd want the sole (and the dirt) on the inside
They start at $29.99 from Amazon

Friday, December 16, 2011

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Upcycled Dictionary Book Art Prints

I stumbled across these on Etsy the other day, and love the combination of vintage illustrations on the book pages.   The seller, PRRINT calls it upcycling, taking an old object and rather than recycling, they're making it more valuable. At $8.00 a print (plus $2.50 shipping to the US), they're very reasonable. 

Sadly, many of the photographs are a little out of focus, but they look like beautiful illustrations.  I especially like the head as it has a very Monty Python feel.

Jelly Fish
Frog Reading
Bike on a map
Alice in Wonderland

Beware of What You Put Inside

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