Like every other cheapskate on the Web, I registered a bunch of domains with GoDaddy. Now they send me weekly junk mail. Maybe it doesn't officially qualify as spam—I'm a paying customer and I sort of care about what they have to offer, but their offer isn't tailored to how I buy or what I might be interested in.
But never mind that, the thing that interests me is the way they personalize it. The other day I got one that said, "Special savings for you, Sonia Simone."
My question is—does this work at all any more? For anyone?
In theory, when prospects see their names, they are lulled into a hypnotic state, all but forced to magically pull out their credit cards and start typing in numbers. More magic beans.
And I'm sure that at some point, it tested well. Back in the dark ages, (what, 18 months ago?) not many spammers had their act together enough to figure how to plug your name into their autoresponder.
But does it work now? Looking at my email box, the only personalized headers I see are from fairly hardassed marketers (Ed Dale, Dan Kennedy) and the unceasing flood of spam that I will never, ever stop getting from FreeLotto.com. (To be fair, I don't dare opt out, as I'm afraid it will trigger a tenfold increase in what they send.) In fact, I mentally filter all the FreeLotto stuff because they do personalize (with my pre-divorce name), so I can spot it easily.
I have a friend who had a friend (does that make this an urban legend? It might, but I don't mind) who signs up for things like Safeway cards with the name "William Fancypants." The baggers ask him, "would you like some help bringing these to your car today, Mr. Fancypants?"
It's too mean for me to do to a grocery store bagger, but I'm seriously considering it for GoDaddy.