Ken Dykes <kgdykes@Thinkage.On.CA> told us that new subscribers to the
mailing list he administrates will be dropped in 3-4 days if they
don't catch the statement at the end of the intro message that tells
them to write back and say that they have indeed read and understood
the whole intro message.
Having people actually read the intro messages would of course be nice
indeed, but when I've been thinking about something somewhat similar
it has been for another reason.
Many persons who subscribe to the mailing list I administrate have
never subscribed to any mailing list before, often they are not very
used to mail at all and sometimes I think they don't know exactly what
a mailing list is, only that there's something going on about a
subject they are interested in and that they should write this address
to somehow take part in it.
I imagine that some of my subscribers whom I never hear from again
when they are subscribed actually can't cope with all the mail they
suddenly get. Maybe it takes some time before they log in the next
time, and then they have lots of mail that they can't handle. And it
keeps piling up and effectively makes email unusable for them as they
wouldn't be able to find any other messages among all the list
messages. That's what I imagine anyway.
So what I've been thinking about is to make all subscriptions "trial
subscriptions" for a week or something like that. But not hide away
that fact in some obscure section of the intro message, but instead
stating it very clearly, probably even send them a special message
that says that "your trial subscription has run out and you haven't
arranged a permanent subscription yet. To get one, ..." when it's
time for that.
My hope is that this will benefit the mail illiterate subscribers, and
even though I don't force the users to read the intro message, at
least I know they actually read their mail (at least one message) and
can send mail themselves.
Also most of my new subscribers unsubscribe after just a couple of
days. They are checking it out and often find that the list isn't of
any interest to them, so a trial subscription scheme would suit them
perfectly, be they mail illiterate or not.
I haven't tried it though. Does anyone have experiences with
something like that?
Per Starback, Uppsala, Sweden. email: firstname.lastname@example.org
"Life is but a gamble! Let flipism chart your ramble!"