Turning a Yes into a No: Chore Marketing | Show Up Strong Online Digital Strategist

Chore Marketing: Turning a Yes Into a NO

Segmenting, clarity, and respecting the audience

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Are you teaching people to ignore your business and turning their yes into a no?

I’m a firm believer in valuing people’s time and permission marketing, so after receiving an email this morning that demonstrates what not to do, I had to share the impact it had on me–the target market–the buyer who already said, “Yes” and what you can learn from their mistake.

The Marketing Chore Style Email

Example of Chore Marketing Email Example - Show Up Strong Online - Digital Strategist


Let’s look at the list of tasks the marketer created for me:

  • The email “from” name was generic and could have been from any of the hundreds of companies that send out endless amounts of emails.
  • There was nothing to remind me I signed up to get info or a name that distinguished them from anyone else.
  • The subject/title of the email was: “Who’s it for?” It didn’t state what “it” is. Still, there is no indication I signed up for info.
  • My first reaction was annoyance, then I opened the email, scrolled to the bottom to look for the unsubscribe link, and then intended to mark it as spam.


It wasn’t until I happened to notice the name of the person from whom I wanted to get info that I stopped to read the email and did not immediately unsubscribe. The name was not prominently placed; my eyes happened to catch it on the way to the unsubscribe button.


5 things that turned “yes” into “no”

  1. It came from the marketing team of arguably one of the best marketers in the world (a big disappointment).
  2. The email was about a marketing seminar I had already said yes to.
  3. It let me know my yes was a wrong choice.
  4. Their marketing tactics for this campaign do not align with my marketing philosophy (so why would I want to waste my time or money “learning” from them?)
  5. Being in my inbox served no purpose for anyone.


In all fairness to the person whose work I admire, I seriously doubt they had anything to do with this particular marketing email sequence, but the team should know better.

I signed up to be informed when the seminar was open for registration. I’ve already indicated I am interested and want to be notified. I’ve already been convinced it’s for me. Why are they wasting my time?

Since nobody can sign up until registration opens next month, there was nothing for the email recipient to do but click one of the text links in the email and see the same information that got me to sign up to be notified in the first place.


When someone says “yes,” stop selling; Do this instead

In sales and marketing, when someone says “yes,” stop selling. Keep the “yes.” Avoid making them regret their choice and questioning your value.

What would have been a better option was for them to segment their marketing campaigns. For someone like me, who has already said, “Yes, let me know when I can give you my money,” don’t send me anything until I can!

Once the segment that said yes has received the “Registration is Open (you can give us your money now)” email and they haven’t signed up, then send them an email to remind them about what’s in it for them.


Chore Marketing and talking your way out of a sale

Annoyed customer looking at email - Chore Marketing and talking your way out of a sale

I already said yes; what more could they get (other than a no)? What they did was what I call “Chore Marketing” and talking their way out of a sale.

“Chore Marketing” is when the sender gives you a task to do. Not a call to action, “to do,” or guiding the target of the marketing piece to interact with the business in some way. No, no, no… Chore Marketing makes the recipient have to do the work the marketing didn’t do (and is their job). It’s adding a task to my day that doesn’t help me, my business, or my clients.

In this case, my tasks were:

  1. Try to figure out who sent the email.
  2. What is it about, and how did I get on another spammer’s list?
  3. Is there some new information I need to know?
  4. Where is the unsubscribe button?


Don’t overestimate your choice of taglines and memorability. People get dozens of emails per day. If it’s not obvious who you are and what it’s about upfront, you’re Chore Marketing me, getting deleted and/or marked as spam.

What they did was talk me out of saying “yes” and having them teach me how to be a “Chore Marketer.” If that’s the kind of marketing they do, the answer to their email subject/title, “Who’s it for?” is obviously not me. I don’t want to and do my best never to annoy my clients, current, past, or future, with pointless emails or “touches” and “Chore Marketing.”

How do I know about talking your way out of a sale? Well, I’ve done it many times. I learned the hard way.

Your role is to teach your audience that they can trust you not to wear out your welcome, and when you do reach out to them in any form, it’s to give them something of value. So, before you send out that marketing email, make sure it serves a purpose for the readerIf not, you’re just noise distracting them from their real work. You’ve taught them to ignore you.

Segment your marketing, always add value, never do “Chore Marketing,” and always keep the buyer’s YES!

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