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Pampered Chef: Oh, what a headache!

  1. SpiritdancerIA

    SpiritdancerIA Member Gold Member

    So, I have been updating my email subscriber list on iContact, adding in addresses added since my last email went out.

    I do this by generating a contact list from P3, limited to the last however many days.

    I goofed, big time :(

    See, I backed up after the most recent show (done regularly, since I move between two computers). Then I edited out those who had gotten email invites for the last show, but didn't buy anything or want to be sent email.

    I forgot to backup again after making the changes in P3. Then swapped to the other computer, and backed up there, restored to the main machine, and overwrote the changes I had made. Then, a couple of days later, I added addresses to iContact. :cry:

    I've just spent an hour and a half tracking down all the addresses added by mistake, getting them out of P3, moving them to "do not contact" on iContact, and them generating an apology letter to send out to everyone affected, cc'ing the host affected most.

    The email I sent out:
    First off, I am sorry that this problem has occurred. I am copying this reply to all of the accidentally subscribed addresses, so everyone knows exactly what happened, and that they have been removed from any further contact, unless they contact me first. They are being sent as a BCC, so their addresses are not shared with anyone else.

    In addition, I am offering to anyone who was accidentally subscribed a $25 credit towards Pampered Chef items, if they choose to use it. This comes out of my pocket, not from Pampered Chef. It was my mistake, so I will pay for it. They can call me or email me to redeem it.

    I did some investigating after getting your email and leaving a message on your machine.

    Here's what happened:
    After closing your show, I backed up my database to copy to my other computer. I then went and edited the information to take out those who didn't specifically tell me they wanted email.

    I did not remember to back up the data at this point, and it got overwritten by a previous backup. The old backup is where I pulled the addresses to add to the mailing list.

    I have gone through everything in my database at this point, and have removed everyone who did not specifically say they wanted to get my newsletter.

    On iContact (the service I use to send out my newsletter), I have marked all of the accidental additions as "Do Not Contact". This not only unsubscribes them from my newsletter, but assures I CAN NOT send any email thru iContact to these addresses. I CAN NOT re-subscribe them to _any_ list I use on iContact.

    If there is anyone who has been unsubscribed who wants to get the newsletter, they will have to subscribe themselves. There is a subscription form on my website that can be used for this.

    Again, I am sorry for the error on my part.​

    So, lesson learned, check that you make backups appropriately AND that you are using your current data :sigh:.
  2. NooraK

    NooraK Legend Member Gold Member

    I can't say that I would proactively offer a $25 credit just because you accidentally sent an email. I think the apology email is sufficient, considering you've already fixed the issue...
    Aug 21, 2009
  3. pampchefsarah

    pampchefsarah Senior Member Gold Member

    Melissa, did someone complain about receiving an e-mail from you? iContact gives the recipient a way to opt-out of receiving future e-mails. You could have just sent an e-mail with instructions to click the link at the bottom of the page if they don't wish to receive your e-newsletter or other communication.

    $25.00 is pretty generous! Is this a discount on an order placed, or $25.00 in free product? Either way, I hope nobody takes you up on the offer, just so you aren't out alot of money for a simple mistake.
    Aug 21, 2009
  4. pcsharon1

    pcsharon1 Veteran Member Gold Member

    Did everyone actually get and open that email you sent from IContact? If they never opened it or it went to their SPAM folder, then you just sent out a personal email offering them $25 for something they didn't even know had happened. Did someone complain? I would have removed them but not offered anything unless someone actually complained. Chances are most of them didn't even notice, and they have a chance to opt out of an icontact message - if they didn't do that then I would assume they didn't mind.
    Aug 21, 2009
  5. SpiritdancerIA

    SpiritdancerIA Member Gold Member

    Two folks used the iContact opt-out - that showed up last night.

    The host was who got under my skin - she emailed me this morning saying several friends had emailed and/or called her to complain. Since they had my email address and phone number in the welcome email, they could've just called me :)

    I'm being generous, since I'd like the host to rebook (her show closed at $894!). I honestly doubt that anyone will take me up on the offer, but it might make me look good when they remember my name :) Or at least they'll hopefully actually remember me :)
  6. DebbieJ

    DebbieJ Legend Member

    Maybe I'm not understanding....this all sounds rather difficult.

    I tell everyone at my show if they give me their email, they'll be added to the list. So if they write it down, it's fair game! I do not add people to P3 unless they have ordered. I would never take my hosts email invite list and add it to my contacts.

    I also use iContact--they can opt out if they want. It's no biggie. I wouldn't dream of offering up $25 just because they are offended. When you buy something from any other store, they often add you to their email campaigns. I get plenty of emails from other stores. And guess what? I can unsub at any time.

    Don't make this harder on yourself than it needs to be.
    Aug 21, 2009
  7. esavvymom

    esavvymom Legend Member Staff Member

    Yeah. I wouldn't have given a $25 credit- that's for sure! Maybe individually to someone who made a fuss, but not as a blanket statement, but if you've already sent it out- hopefully you don't have too many people take you up on it- unless it turns into future business.

    But I'm like Deb. If someone puts their email address on a Drawing Slip or order form at the show, they'll get my newsletter until they opt-out otherwise. If I have their email address because of doing the invites, then NO, I do not add them into P3. They stay on the invitation list (paper) and on my PWS show info only. My Hosp.Director says she always adds people from the PWS e-vites directly into her contacts. I think that's not honest since the guest hadn't given the address.

    I'm sure most people are VERY used to getting email newsletters just for registering or visiting a site these days. If they don't like it, they hit the opt-out button. We all know where to find them!

    Good luck!
    Aug 21, 2009
  8. SpiritdancerIA

    SpiritdancerIA Member Gold Member

    Part of the problem here: these were folks sent evites from my website. When they said they were coming, I added them to my contacts (easier to pull them up at the show). No order at the show, I delete them from my contacts.

    One of these was at the show, and was pretty insistent she didn't want the newsletter, but contacting her otherwise by email was OK. I suspect she was the one who raised the stink, but I can't be sure (if so, she had already unsubscribed herself). Since the host didn't tell me WHO I needed to take off, I did a blanket unsubscribe for anyone who didn't have an email address on an order form.

    Sum total was, IIRC about 5 people. And so far, I haven't heard a peep from any of them one way or another.
  9. pcsharon1

    pcsharon1 Veteran Member Gold Member

    Okay, I think I understand now, but I was very confused as well as to how you have email addresses for someone who doesn't want you to have their email address. I would personally think it would be easier to just input each ordering guest as a new contact in your system when closing the show and only use the information they gave you, than the double checking, deleting, copying and backingup that you are doing now. That way, you would know that the information you have is the information they want you to have and not what you got from someone else.
    Aug 22, 2009
  10. SpiritdancerIA

    SpiritdancerIA Member Gold Member

    Part of the backing up is moving from desktop to laptop and back :)

    I'm looking at some options - one would be to stay with the laptop (it goes to shows), but the power supply is getting a bit flaky.
  11. PChefMisty

    PChefMisty Silver Member

    What about using a USB key and operate from it...take it back and forth from laptop to desktop, that way all the information is correct all the time since you are just dealing with one copy?

    Aug 31, 2009
  12. SpiritdancerIA

    SpiritdancerIA Member Gold Member

    That would probably be a good idea, other than I'm a bit afraid of losing the thumb drive :)

    Yeah, I've already "misplaced" two or three of 'em.
  13. esavvymom

    esavvymom Legend Member Staff Member

    Can you put it on your keychain? most of the ones I have can be attached to a keychain- so pick out a BIG one. :D
    Aug 31, 2009
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