Why I unsubscribed from LinkedIn email newsletters

on May 12, 2011
(3 minute read)

Since the ‘unsubscribe’ link in every newsletter started to be mandatory by law, I started unsubscribing massively from most of the newsletters I had been automatically subscribed to when registering to sites and without the unsubscribe button they where a pain to get rid of (writing an email to some address with ‘unsubscribe’ in the subject or having to log into a website I forgot the login details months ago, navigate a 5 click process to request a new password and navigate a 10 click process to finally get rid of the emails).

LinkedIn emails where one of the few I kept

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But after the massive newsletter carnage I left a few selection that provided me some value and that I found somehow useful. One of them was the network updates from LinkedIn. Although the news feed in LinkedIn is not as extensive as in other networks like Twitter or Facebook, it is interesting to keep up-to-date with my friend’s and colleague’s jobs and professional career. And with the latest integration of social media to LinkedIn it was even starting to get more relevant and rich.

So I kept receiving automatic LinkedIn emails (apart from personal invitations and messages triggered by users themselves) for a while and it was all right until I couldn’t stand it up any more. It wasn’t because of the emails being dull or me becoming uninterested, it was because of the timing of these emails. The emails where sent at completely awkward times and my iPhone kept beeping every two days at key fuck-yeah times (just 30-60min after going to sleep or 30-60min before waking up), here’s a short list of the latest emails I received lately.

LinkedIn awkwardly timed emails

  • 11 May: LinkedIn promotion: ‘xaviesteve.com is in the spotlight’ sent a Wednesday at 6.06am (I wake up at 7am)
  • 9 May: ‘Network updates’ sent a Monday at 1.36am (went to sleep really tired at 1am, usually I go to bed at 12am)
  • 6 May: ‘Top Headlines in Internet’ sent a Friday at 12.12am
  • 5 May: ‘Do you know A, B, or C?’ sent a Thursday at 7.14am
  • 2 May: ‘LinkedIn Network Updates’ sent a Monday at 1.46am
  • 29 Apr: ‘Top Headlines in Internet’ sent a Friday at 12.13am
  • 25 Apr: ‘LinkedIn Network Updates’ sent a Monday at 1:57am

The iPhone email beep woke me up at those hours every day (or night), and I can’t mute the device because the alarm would just vibrate without sound and I wouldn’t wake up for work which has already happened twice (Apple please, fix this too).

The day I got tired of LinkedIn

So one Wednesday I had had very few sleep and was waking up at 7am the next day. I received an email from LinkedIn at 6am, the beep of the phone woke me up and I found it very hard to fall asleep again, I was so tired, my eyes where itching, my body was stubborn yet I couldn’t go back to sleep. I then felt so frustrated that I grabbed my phone and targeted the unsubscribe button of the cursed email that took 1 hour of sleep out of my life, forever. My surprise was that once clicking the LinkedIn unsubscribe button (don’t remember if it was a 1 or 2 click process) I got unsubscribed from everything (network updates, top headlines, promotions and any other newsletter). I would’ve kept the Network Updates but now they are gone too… Not to worry too much though, I’m pretty sure I’ll be able to live without them.

Timed marketing and how to annoy your clients

Timed marketing efforts can make a difference in users engagement and acceptance of company promotion and it really does! But it works both ways. A user can either find your newsletter very useful while drinking the morning coffee after having a refreshing shower or he can absolutely hate you for waking him up on a late night like LinkedIn has been doing to me every 3 days for the past months. There is a study from Buddy Media that suggests 7am, 5pm and 11pm as the best times to publish data on Facebook (these vary for email newsletters) although there is a don’t annoy common sense policy that states that sending emails at awkward hours is completely annoying.

LinkedIn, I still love you, but you’ll never take my sleep again.

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  • ed says:

    how does linkedin choose who to suggest for the “do you know a, b, or c?” emails? they are not people i have ever emailed with, nor do we have shared schools or work history. are they people who searched for your profile? a lot of them seem to be people i have never heard of?

  • Chris says:

    Doesn’t your phone have an option to turn it to vibrate-only, totally silent or*gasp* to turn it off? There might be even an app for you to do this automatically if you are forgetful. Not disputing the idiotic email timing from LinkedIn, but I am getting tons of stuff during the night and I am just doing the obvious – turning off all sound alerts.

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