Internet Marketing

Avoid e-mailing the wrong people: A quick tip

My clients don’t really have my best interests at heart. They all have names like ‘Joe’ or ‘Jane’ or whatever.

So it’s really, really easy to have one of those butt-clenching moments when you realize you just sent a line-by-line chronicling of every onsite SEO issue your pharmaceuticals client has to your unitarian church client.


You can do some basic stuff, like setting your e-mail program to delay outgoing messages for 30 seconds. That works if you remember to check who you just sent to.

Yeah, right.

My preferred method: I type in each recipient’s last name, instead of their first name, when I’m entering e-mail addresses.

I don’t have multiple clients with the same last names. So I’m a little less prone to e-mailing Jane Jones when I meant to e-mail Jane Smith.

Whenever I forget, by the way, I seem to end up accidentally e-mailing the wrong Jennifer, or the wrong Scott. A nice reminder.

If you know a better way, like a little monkey that’ll read my e-mail to: line and then hit me with a tire iron if I screw up, leave a comment.

CEO & Founder

Ian Lurie is CEO and founder of Portent and the EVP of Marketing Services at Clearlink. He's been a digital marketer since the days of AOL and Compuserve (25 years, if you're counting). He's recorded training for, writes regularly for the Portent Blog and has been published on AllThingsD, Smashing Magazine, and TechCrunch. Ian speaks at conferences around the world, including SearchLove, MozCon, Seattle Interactive Conference and ad:Tech. He has published several books about business and marketing: One Trick Ponies Get Shot, available on Kindle, The Web Marketing All-In-One Desk Reference for Dummies, and Conversation Marketing. Follow him on Twitter at portentint, and on LinkedIn at

Start call to action

See how Portent can help you own your piece of the web.

End call to action


  1. Don’t know if you’re a Mac or a PC, but maybe groups? So, you type “church” and the church lady pops up (sorry, couldn’t resist).
    If it makes you feel better, I had a client who used to occasionally send me her accounting books by mistake (I’m a copywriter). Her accountant had a similar name.

Comments are closed.

Close Mobile Menu Button
Close search overlay