When Does Marketing Become Unwanted or Intrusive? What Can You Do About It?

If you are a frequent traveler, you likely are a member of at least one frequent travel loyalty program; and you likely subscribe to notifications and marketing from them in order to keep you informed of the latest offers and deals — as well as the current status of your membership account and other information which you may deem important…

When Does Marketing Become Unwanted or Intrusive?

…but when does marketing from a company which you patronize approach the point of becoming “spam” with which the information is virtually or completely worthless to you? Is it that auction which will siphon hundreds of thousands of miles or points out of your account if you are the top bidder in which you would never participate anyway? Perhaps that unexpected reminder that you were in the middle of booking a reservation which you never finished and you need to complete it gives that creepy notion that you are being watched at all times? Could those endless credit card applications which promise you free travel be getting on your nerves?

“Has Marriott got to the point where members are perceiving that the level of marketing emails is becoming instrusive SPAM ?” asked FlyerTalk member Oxon Flyer, who listed all of the e-mail messages which he received within one month from Marriott Bonvoy:

26 Oct : Oxon, your November Offers Have Arrived
25 Oct : The Curator – October 2019
24 Oct : Your Must-Do Exclusive List
23 Oct : Get Complimentary Breakfast and 5% Off with Your Visa® Card
23 Oct : Stay Twice. Get 2,000 Bonus Points. Then, Get Even More
15 Oct : Be a Part of It All with Marriott Bonvoy Moments
15 Oct : Save up to 25% at Picture-Perfect Getaways
11 Oct : Your Marriott Bonvoy Account Update: Special Offers, Benefits & More
8 Oct : Get Special Savings and Earn up to 2,000 Points on Hertz Rentals
1 Oct : Don’t Miss These Moments
28 Sep : Oxon, Your October Offers Have Arrived

You might be hesitant on putting a stop to what can seem like a continuous stream of the bombardment of what you consider to be useless information because you do receive an offer once in a while which is of interest to you — and you do not want to be left out when that happens.

What You Can Do

Most frequent travel loyalty programs — and, in fact, many companies — offer options to adjust your subscriptions so that you are not inundated with what you may consider to be little more than superfluous diatribe. Those options may include changing the frequency with which you receive marketing communications; or you can select what types of communications you prefer to receive. Simply log into your membership account and adjust your subscription accordingly — or cancel it altogether, if you prefer.

Several examples are included below.

HILTON HONORS

Communication preferences

Click on the image for an enlarged view. Source: Hilton Honors.

MARRIOTT BONVOY

Communication preferences

Click on the image for an enlarged view. Source: Marriott Bonvoy.

DELTA AIR LINES

Communication preferences

Click on the image for an enlarged view. Source: Delta Air Lines.

UNITED AIRLINES

Communication preferences

Click on the image for an enlarged view. Source: United Airlines.

AMERICAN AIRLINES

Communication preferences

Click on the image for an enlarged view. Source: American Airlines.

If that fails, you can always try communicating with the customer service department of the company and express your concerns.

In the unlikely event that a company continues to incessantly send unwanted communications to you and you have tried everything within your power to stop it, you have the option to report the abuser by contacting the Federal Trade Commission of the United States as a last resort — no pun intended.

Summary

When I find that I am spending significantly more time and effort than I deem necessary clearing out unwanted marketing communications which do not benefit me at all is when I decide that the time has come to take action and do something about it.

Sifting through a morass of unwanted marketing communications should not be a chore which takes time away from your day — and, hopefully, this article offered some useful information…

…but when does marketing become unwanted or intrusive to the point where it emulates “spam”, in your opinion?

Graphic illustration ©2012 Brian Cohen.

2 thoughts on “When Does Marketing Become Unwanted or Intrusive? What Can You Do About It?”

  1. Billy Bob says:

    Privacy popups on every site (even yours) and now the data sharing is worse than ever.

    1. Brian Cohen says:

      You won’t get an argument from me, Billy Bob.

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