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Apr 10 / Amy

Dear Overstock.com

Hi there, it’s me, Amy, you know, one of your newest customers.

I’ve browsed your website for years, but never bought anything.  I just couldn’t find exactly what I was looking for, that is, until recently.  I spotted a rug that I thought would be perfect for our formal living room, and the hubs agreed.

The rug we purchased for our formal living room

We decided to take the plunge and make our first purchase.

When filling out the form to purchase, I noticed that you had a check-box available to allow people to sign up for your email marketing messages.  I work in email, and I get a lot of email from other brands, so I wasn’t interested.  I was just testing out this relationship – in dating terms, we met for coffee.  I didn’t want to fully commit yet.  I left the box unchecked.

Within minutes of submitting my billing information, I get an email asking me to confirm my Omail subscription – before I even receive my purchase confirmation email. *scratches head*  Pretty sure I didn’t check the box to receive emails…

Just click the link!

The email said to click on the link to confirm my subscription.  Because I was curious, and because I didn’t want to receive emails, I didn’t click on the link.

The next day, I received an email from you regarding my purchase, great, I don’t mind that kind of communication – it’s standard.  But then you sent me an email about saving on my next purchase.  I’m glad you enjoyed our coffee date, but really, this seems a bit forward, it’s been less than 24 hours.  Because you seemed nice, I let it slide, chalked it up to the fact that I’m that great – you want to have me as a customer again.

And then a few hours later I get an email welcoming me to your Omail messages.

Welcome to Omail!

Wait, what?  I didn’t ask for emails from you.  What are you doing?  This seems a bit desperate.  Have you ever been out on a coffee date before?  Don’t you know you’re supposed to play it cool for a couple days and then casually ask if I’d like to go out for dinner sometime – IF – I gave you the green light.  Did I play with my hair?  Did I laugh at your jokes?  Did I ask you to give me a call sometime?  No. I said it was nice to meet you at the end of the date.

By now, I’m a little annoyed, but it gets down right creepy when the next day you stop by my inbox and suggest recommendations.  Just because I purchased a rug from you, doesn’t mean you know what I like, want, or need for my house. I shake it off though, because my rug arrived.  Speedy service, yes. Cheap shipping, yes. Emails worth reading outside of my transactional emails so far, no.

The next day you’re already asking about my next purchase.  And four days later, you’re begging me to come shop with you again.  Followed up with an email about sales the following day, and then a SECRET SALE (in all caps, no less)!  I’m getting a little nervous, should I ask for a restraining order?  Or are you a harmless brand enamored by my ability to make online purchases?

I decide to keep an eye out to see how many more emails you’d send, so I’d have a good record of the times you communicated with me, against my will.  A fun experiement for my already overcrowded inbox, I hope I have the strength to keep this up.

There are more sales, more caps locks, and then you ask me if I forgot about the product I already purchased.

Did you forget about meeee?

Am I hearing this right?  Did you listen to anything I said on our coffee date?  I liked the rug enough to buy it already!

While I hadn’t forgotten about the rug, (once we finally got around to taking it out of it’s wrapping – it didn’t look like it did online, and it didn’t match the room), we wanted to return it.  Ugh.  I hate returning things, companies can make this process so difficult.

I followed the steps on the package information about how to return something to Overstock, and requested a shipping label from UPS.  I imagine this would be like me asking you to stop calling.  I thought I liked you, but really, I liked the idea of you.

It was only $2.95 for shipping to me, but when I have to pay to ship it back, they’re going to credit me the total purchase minus shipping, which is about $25. Wow, thanks guys.

Then you email me again asking if I’m still interested in the product, that I already purchased, AND requested to return. No, I’m not interested in the product.  This is the last time I meet someone I met online for coffee ever again!

Are you still interested in me? Check yes or no.

There’s no need to get angry, there’s no need for all caps subject lines either.  Clearly, you’re not stable and I’m not interested in clingy.  After 22 days and 21 emails, I think that it’s time to end things for good.

My inbox after 3 weeks of Overstock emails…

As I go to unsubscribe, I notice you have me checked for ‘Standard Email’.

How would you define ‘Standard’?

Sending me an email EVERY day is standard!?!?  Are you crazy?  Wait, I’ve already answered that – you’re practically stalking me after we went out for coffee.

You’ve already disinterested me from receiving your emails, so while I think it’s great that I can hear from you once a week, once every two weeks, or once a month, I’m really not interested.

So I unsubscribed.

Whew, finally opted out of the nonsense

And then you tell me it could take 10 days for you to completely remove me from your messaging.

10 days, so that means 9 or 10 more emails – right?  Let’s hope not…

Regards,
Someone who will never opt-in for your email communication again
Are there any brands out there that bombard your inbox? Any one of them that you just *had* to stop receiving emails because it was overkill? I have a few, but I’d love to hear about yours!

 

[#31 of #52]

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11 Comments

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  1. Melissa / Apr 10 2012

    HA! This is hilarious, Amy! I will be joining overstock.com in “stalking” you from now on. Great post!

    • Amy / Apr 10 2012

      Haha, sweet! As long as you don’t blow up my inbox, we’re cool! 😉

      I’ve been enjoying your posts lately too – Blogger just makes it difficult to respond to posts sometimes!

  2. Jamie / Apr 10 2012

    Loved this! Target is pretty bad, but I did sign up for the emails. Old Navy is the worst!

    • Amy / Apr 10 2012

      I bet Target is bad, I’ve never thought about signing up for theirs. I agree, Old Navy is pretty bad too. Every time I get an email from them, I think about unsubscribing, because they’re usually web deals – and I don’t buy from their online store. I think you’ve just encouraged me to unsubscribe from them too!

  3. Cindy / Apr 10 2012

    J. Jill, Jockey, Land’s End, Red Envelope (and all companies owned by their parent company, Liberty Media). I’m sure there are more, but those are the ones I can think of off the top of my head.

    • Amy / Apr 10 2012

      Cindy, good list! I’ve purchased from Land’s End before, but never got any emails from them. The LOFT is also a big offender. I had to unsubscribe from their list because they sent emails daily, and it was almost clockwork the day they’d be sending notice about a sale online. I swear they had a rotation of 3-4 emails that they just sent over and over again!

  4. Jamie Cousin / Apr 10 2012

    Victoria doesn’t have any secrets if you get it. She must have a severe crush on me. I mark her as spam. Severely Psychotic And Manipulative is what it must stand for.

    • Amy / Apr 10 2012

      Victoria’s Secret is another brand I refuse to sign up for! You should definitely unsubscribe instead of just hitting spam! Their database should remove you permanently after that, should being the key word!

  5. Brian / Apr 10 2012

    Nice post Griz. Looks like your trip for coffee was actually an afternoon spent at the International Coffee and Barista Museum. Damn hipters. Always looking for a deeper meaning in their cup o’ joe.

    Side note: doesnt Liberty Media own the Braves as well? How are their emails?

  6. Amanda / Apr 11 2012

    I laughed so hard throughout this post. Great job Amy! For me it’s FTD. I’m pretty sure they ask me to send flowers for made up holidays. “Today is send your best friends, aunt’s, neighbors cat flowers day…would you like to send Fluffy flowers?” *sigh*

  7. William / Apr 14 2012

    You absolutely nailed Overstock.com with this story. They are an incredibly desparate company. Just look at their stock’s chart and you’ll need no further explanation. http://finance.yahoo.com/echarts?s=OSTK+Interactive#symbol=ostk;range=1y;compare=;indicator=volume;charttype=area;crosshair=on;ohlcvalues=0;logscale=off;source=undefined;

    They are running out of money and they will do anything to make a sale. Beware!

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