The SPAM Litmus Test

As part of my role here at Force 5, I make unsolicited contact with potential clients almost every day.  I do this through a variety of means – letters, phone calls, emails – to let people know about the great things our company can do for them. I realize my activity can be an invasion of a busy person’s privacy, so I always do my best to be courteous, professional, and respectful in all my communications.

Force 5 was recently contacted through our “contact us” page on our website.  The email tone was friendly enough, but it appeared to be cut-and-paste and was written using bad grammar.  At the bottom of the email was the following disclaimer:

Note:  This email is not spam, it was manually sent by us, our sole purpose being to introduce ourselves to you with no obligation on your part. Your email address was found to be publicly available on your website and it has not been added to any list. We consider this to be a polite way to contact you and apologize sincerely if you have been inconvenienced in any way. We are obliged to offer you an ‘OPT-OUT’ from future mailings from us; should you wish to exercise this right, please reply with “OPT-OUT” in the subject field.

Polite enough, I think.  So, what do you think? Was this SPAM or not?

My litmus test:  if you have to explain to someone why it’s not SPAM then it probably is.