The Spam Mail Index As a Gauge of Economic Conditions

Apr. 09, 2009 12:30 PM ET
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Contributor Since 2008

For more than five decades, I have counseled executives on their organization’s communications strategy. Much of my career has focused on investor relations issues for public companies in a wide range of industries, facing numerous issues at various times in their life cycles. I have built very successful communications firms in PR, advertising, digital, public affairs, etc.  I have just launched a new agency that focuses exclusively on the cannabis industry,  We are a group of professionals with great credentials.  We focus on serving enterprises that either are or seriously want to be #1, 2 or 3 in their particular segment.  

I'm getting inundated with emails that somehow get through our spam mail filters.  They basically all start out by telling me that in this economy I am certainly going to want to maximize this or minimize that and these guys really do that well, and click a link to find out more. 

These campaigns are usually managed in commodity-like ways.  They are put together by people who have expertise in their own line of work rather than having marketing and communications skills.  They also have an urgent need to find customers anywhere, so launching an email campaign is a cheap and quick effort.   

It occurred to me that the increase in these emails is really a barometer of the strength of the market.  As the economy worsens, businesses are going to test a wide variety of business development efforts.  It will be a natural for businesses to turn to email campaigns.  My guess is that the trend we're seeing of more spam mail will continue for the immediate future.  By the time the urgency of the need begins to subside, so many improvements will have been made that marketing will be dramatically more web-based than it is now.  It's part of the revolution in communications.

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