I was working with a reseller the other day on her bi-weekly e-newsletter. She had been sending out messages to the same distribution list for the past few months, keeping her database clean by adding in new contacts (with their permission), and allowing the distribution service that she paid for monthly automatically clean out and delete those who chose to opt-out through the e-newsletters opt-out language at the top of the email. We thought this was enough in order to meet the service’s “no spam tolerance” policy. But for this one guy, it clearly wasn’t enough. In today’s web-driven world, I think it’s safe to say that everyone knows there’s an opt-out option on most, if not all, e-newsletters. Ideally, it should be at the top of the email, but it’s usually somewhere. If you don’t want the email, just opt-out. Simple. Well, this one guy not only opted out, but reported the email as spam. My reseller and I scratched our heads. We had qualified leads for this list, were confident in the fact that our e-newsletter subject matter would appeal to the people on these lists, and we offered an unsubscribe option just in case it didn’t. Why did he have to report it as spam? We will probably never know, but the lesson here is be very careful about what you email to whom and why. There is so much viral marketing out there today that people are simply sick of it. We decided that we would send another short email to this list, clearly stating our intentions for the e-newsletter and providing a big, bold opt-out. By giving those on this list a clear view of what we’re trying to provide, it affords them a simple way to be a part of it or not – but it’s their choice and that’s the important part.