24 Feb 2009

Never Imply Permission

During the course of my work, I happen upon some very upsetting trends and events that do nothing but damage someone’s credibility, trust and personal brand. In addition, if those events people are participating in are under the umbrella of their employer, it is damaging that company’s brand as well.

Several months ago, my marketing assistant quit unexpectedly and I needed to get someone in to fill that position immediately. Our Accounting Manager uses a recruiting company on a regular basis and suggested I contact them. Since this was my first time using a placement service, I was a little skeptical that they could fill my need with a person of the correct skill set. After was all said and done, I had a competent, resourceful and pleasant assistant jumping right into the thick of things and doing a satisfactory job.What happened after this is what upsets me.To use this service, an Account Manager from the placement company visited me asking relevant questions about the position and what my requirements were. Now, that isn’t the issue I have with the process. That comes with the territory. What I do have an issue with is the inundation of spam emails I now receive from the Account Manager.During the course of the meetings, I gave her my business card which has my email address on it. However, this does not imply I would now like to receive emails from her outlining potential candidates with accounting, finance and legal expertise. I work in the Marketing Dept! Why would I need to know about applicants outside of my discipline? The short answer is: I do not.

She assumed that it is ok to start sending me emails without asking me if she could. During the course of our conversations, she was told that I do not have a large or even moderate need for her staffing services. In spite of that, I start receiving spam. Let’s face it. That is what it is. It is unsolicited and it is boilerplate.

She has damaged her credibility and trust with me. In fact, I am not sure if I do have a need in the future if she will be the one I call. If she had generated some content that I would be of interest or benefit to me and was providing it to me to make my life easier, it would have boosted her brand with me.

The old school sales tactics are not going to get people the same results anymore. In fact, they are going to start hurting them more than ever.



Adam is a graduate of Colorado State University (bachelor’s degree in marketing), and he has experience on both the client and agency side of the marketing world. These experiences led him to come up with a unique, more efficient business model, which he’s incorporated into Encite Marketing. Adam sets the strategic direction for all Encite projects, developing integrated marketing campaigns that bring results. He takes a consultative approach with clients, educating them about how the process works, and keeping them in the loop about end goals, steps, and tasks.


  1. You are right on with this post. I’ve been added to so many newsletter lists and spam lists when I’ve given my business card to a vendor. If they simply asked permission to do it, everything would be fine.

  2. I agree and dislike being treated this way. One thing I do in response to this is to send them a boilerplate back saying:

    “Thank you for thinking of me. I really appreciate it. Please check my blog and website below and let me know how I may help you.”

    I figure if I turn it around on them, I might get some business (that has happened). It’s better than getting upset and I don’t want to burn a connection I might need someday. They shouldn’t complain as all I am doing is replying to them. If they do complain, it will make for an interesting conversation.

    John Schneyer
    Boca Consultants

  3. Oh boy, you’re going to get some comments on this one!

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