Lately, as my mailing list has grown and my twitter following increases, I’ve been getting emails from some of you. The crazy part is despite the writing I do, I still get some of the most ridiculously crappy emails you’ve ever seen in your life. Today I want to quickly highlight two such emails and I encourage the folks that sent them to write down any complaints, put them in a letter, address an envelope, and then crumple it up and throw it away. There’s no helping you if the kind of outreach you’re doing is EXACTLY what I say NOT to do.
Here is the first email I got (I happened to see it on my phone first):
Seriously? They haven’t even changed their default mail name from “Yahoo! Mail” – and, oh yeah, they SPELLED MUSIC WRONG. Are you serious? How does this person expect me to respond? Here are a few things that went through my brain:
2. YES, I am able to, but I won’t.
3. What the hell is “muaic?”
4. Dear Yahoo Mail, I wasn’t aware that non-living computer entities were even self-aware, much less writing compelling “muaic” that I may or may not be able to listen to! Yes PLEASE tell me more!
Look. If you can’t write a complete sentence, give up now. If you can’t do an inkling of homework BEFORE you reach out to someone, give up now. People will tell you to follow your dreams – I am telling you to stop immediately following your dreams if you can’t even follow simple protocol – you’re wasting everyone’s time. I’m more compelled to open spam emails than garbage like this.
Alright, moving on to email number two (which is about as effective as sending someone a number 2). This person can at least write sentences and has included their name. Big improvement. However, they COMPLETELY miss the point of one of my FIRST key elements of marketing your music: they make it all about them. I’ve blurred out the info but take a look:
Do you see why people aren’t listening to your music? Do you get it? If I sent you an email that never offered any sort of worthwhile content or didn’t want to genuinely help you, would you ever open it? No, you wouldn’t. You’d sigh heavily, throw your sandwich across the room and run to cry under your bed.
Action Step: Re-write these emails in the comments and see if you can do better. Remember, your goal is to get the person to listen to your music, but you want to be relevant to the person you’re writing to. For this exercise’s sake, pretend it’s someone who works as a music supervisor. If you need to, refer back to my post about what to focus on when reaching out to people cold.