The Most Beloved Brand Apple’s Big Email Marketing Fails

why email marketing fails

Companies like McDonalds, Apple and Google have outstripped their status as iconic brands, becoming the most beloved brands across generations. How can we, as business owners and marketers, achieve similar success from brands that are widely recognized and adorned around the planet? By learning from their mistakes, simple as that!

Apple is a company much cherished and praised for its brand personality, products and services and consumer views. It comes as a surprise that its marketing practice could receive severe backlash, but that’s what happened in April 2013, when Apple sent out an email for Mother’s Day promoting an iPad. Within few minutes of the email blast, iPad was trending on Twitter for all wrong reasons.

Why Email Marketing Fails

Here’s what happened that turned the email campaign into a huge fail:

  • The timings of the email was perfect, it was sent exactly 2 weeks before Mother’s Day, a time when most people would be thinking about getting presents for their Mum. The emails sent carried the subject line Make Mum’s Day. Every Day. The title is undeniable an excellent one, but suggesting that people buy such an expensive items for Mother’s Day which is usually a low-key affair in many families, particularly in comparison to holidays such as Christmas and Birthdays isn’t convincing enough for today’s buyers. Apple could have done with a little less low-priced item or with discounts in the email campaign, which although didn’t happen.
  • A lot of brands today follow the batch and blast model. For example, Apple in the past has many times sent acquisitional emails in the UK, where people consider thanksgiving an American tradition.

Certainly, Apple is a company that must be having vast reserves of customer data. Why not use it? The email blast that was sent on Mother’s Day wasn’t personalized appropriately creating groups of segmented audiences for better ROI. Customers who may have bought tracks on iTunes during that period got the same email as those who bought MacBook Pro.

For a high value product such as an iPad, Apple’s marketers would have known that only a certain segment of people would act upon receiving it. What Apple’s marketers needed to do was to give a little more thought to proper list management and segmentation before the campaign was carried out to save themselves from further embarrassment.

  • Apple was the target of humorous tweets from ill-targeted audience for its Mother’s Day email campaign. Not learning from past mistakes is again a grave mistake, but that’s what Apple did. Possibly to capitalize from publicity since many marketers today follow the all publicity is good publicity school of thought. It reapplied the same old batch and blast strategy during Father’s Day, the same year, enticing people into buying an iPad for their beloved dads. Surprisingly, this time Apple received negative publicity for many different reasons. It was promoting the same old product, the iPad which held no fascination in the eyes of the targeted audiences. It could have if the email campaign carried certain discounts or offers, but that wasn’t the case. Secondly, Apple wasn’t promoting a new and anticipated device like iPhone 5 or the new iPad Mini, which could have leveraged marketers on some great sales.

Learn how FrescoData’s Expert Consulting can be used for your next email marketing campaigns to avoid huge marketing fails.

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