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can I tell our advertisers who clicked on their ad

Occasional Contributor

can I tell our advertisers who clicked on their ad

We sell banner adverts in our newsletter. The advertisers would dearly love to know who clicked on their adverts and of course we have this information. What do you think is ethical here? Probably everyone would agree we shouldn't give the advertisers the e-mail address of people who clicked on their ad. But what about providing them their name, title, company, location? Or just the company name? I suppose perhaps there are legal issues here, if the person receiving the newsletter doesn't know we might be passing on information about the adverts they clicked on (and they might be surprised to get a sales phone call from the advertiser). It might violate data protection laws. Maybe we could get around this by asking people to agree we might pass on their name and address to advertisers if they click on an ad. Does anybody have any thoughts.
Solution Provider

can I tell our advertisers who clicked on their ad

I would not do it unless your newsletter contained a disclaimer saying that their information would be passed onto advertisers if they took action on the links. In that case I don't think many people would...

People are definitely weary about organizations sharing their personal information, I think you are best off erring on the side of caution.
Occasional Advisor

can I tell our advertisers who clicked on their ad


When you subscribe to a newspaper, the publisher doesn't give your contact info to their advertisers.

The subscriber info is YOUR property until a reader takes action.

Here's an idea you may be able to use...

Offer your advertisers a PREMIUM service (you charge more for it) after they're already newsletter subscribers.

This premium service is basically a personalized introduction. You are "introducing" them to your database in a separate email.

The whole idea is to use your rapport with your list to prompt a higher response rate than usual with just a space ad in your newsletter.

That way, you can endorse the company and encourage your people to click through to get their free report or sample or whatever.

With a premium service like this, you'll generate more revenue and give your advertisers more business.

Mike Denison
Email Marketing Consultant & Copywriter
Occasional Contributor

can I tell our advertisers who clicked on their ad

Hi Mike and Kelly,

Many thanks for your advice that's great -

NB Mike I think you are suggesting that we should send entire e-mails to our list on behalf of our advertisers.

This poses another issue, how much will this annoy our subscribers - they have subscribed to our newsletter, not to receive marketing e-mails from other companies.

I have tried this - I set up the e-mail so it looked like it came from me, not the advertiser (so people wouldn't think I passed their e-mail address onto the advertiser), and I put a footnote, something like, I'm sending you this e-mail because I thought you might be interested, if you don't want to receive it, click on the link to change your preferences and select a list which says 'no marketing e-mails'.

Hardly anyone did join the 'no marketing e-mails' list, but I think this is probably because people annoyed by the e-mail wouldn't have read to the bottom..

One other suggestion is that we can suggest to advertisers that they put some useful content on their websites, then promote this content with their banner on our website, and then find a way to persuade people who go to their website to provide contact details - although this all starts getting rather complicated

Cheers Karl

Karl Jeffery
Editor, Digital Energy Journal, London
Occasional Advisor

can I tell our advertisers who clicked on their ad

Hi, Karl

Sorry for the delay in responding. Between vacation and big projects, I've been a bit busy lately!

You're right, people don't want to be bombarded by advertisements.

But they DO want help in sifting through tools and information to find the things that work best for them in their situation.

After all, people pay money and subscribe to publications such as Consumer Report so they can find out what they want to buy.

So if you think that what your advertisers have to offer is of real value to your readers, then you are in a position to be of definite service to them.

For example, if you have a newsletter for your bowling alley, then it's easy to find ways to promote advertisers in all sorts of categories such as bowling equipment (obvious) to personal trainers (improve your scores through better fitness) to even something that seems far-fetched like real estate (find time to spend more time bowling by moving into a house closer to the bowling alley).

To set it off from your regular newsletter, you may want to call it something like the "Hot Sheet" that allows you to discuss products and services that you think would be useful to your readers.

Maybe even promote it as a new free service that will save them time and money!

Again -- people don't mind being sold on things that are interesting to them. Just try and position it as a service and not an advertising vehicle. If you're honest in your appraisals and promotions of your advertising clients' products/services, your Hot Sheet will be a welcome addition to your newsletter!

Mike Denison
Email Marketing Consultant & Copywriter