About to send an email? Check this list

About to send an email or do a Reply To All?  Seth Godin suggests you don’t:

Three years ago this week, I posted this checklist, in the naive hope that it would eliminate (or perhaps merely reduce) the ridiculous CC-to-all emails about the carpool, the fake-charity forwards, the ALL CAPS yelling and the stupid PR spam.

A guy can hope, can’t he?

Feel free to send this to those that need to read it:

Before you hit send on that next email, perhaps you should run down this list, just to be sure:

1.        Is it going to just one person? (If yes, jump to #10)
2.        Since it’s going to a group, have I thought about who is on my list?
3.        Are they blind copied?
4.        Did every person on the list really and truly opt in? Not like sort of, but really ask for it?
5.        So that means that if I didn’t send it to them, they’d complain about not getting it?
6.        See #5. If they wouldn’t complain, take them off!
7.        That means, for example, that sending bulk email to a list of bloggers just cause they have blogs is not okay.
8.        Aside: the definition of permission marketing: Anticipated, personal and relevant messages delivered to people who actually want to get them. Nowhere does it say anything about you and your needs as a sender. Probably none of my business, but I’m just letting you know how I feel. (And how your prospects feel).
9.        Is the email from a real person? If it is, will hitting reply get a note back to that person? (if not, change it please).
10.        Have I corresponded with this person before?

The list goes on to point 36, well worth reading and printing out for future reference!

Stuart McIntyre is a Senior Strategist at Fostering Community Limited. He curates a number of product-focused news sites, is a lapsed podcaster, founded the Social Connections user group and regularly speaks at conferences and events. This blog represents his own slightly-eccentric and usually-controversial opinions!