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How Email Is Like A Fax Machine

November 03, 2014 10:20 am

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How Email Is Like A Fax Machine

fax machineDo you have a fax machine?

I used to have one but can’t remember when I got rid of it. This thought occurred to me yesterday when I saw a dusty machine sitting among other discards below a huge sign that said “Free”. This display was outside the neighborhood flower shop that was closing.

As welcome as free stuff can be, there is no immediate role for a fax communications in my office operation, so I left it where I saw it.

Coincidentally, the concept of faxing also arose in a comment in response to a recent blog post. In response to my post Ending Email & Voice Mail?, Eric Graham commented:

“I believe that email will always be part of the paradigm for transmitting documents and direct correspondence. However as a method of reaching the masses it has become obsolete and way over used thereby becoming very ineffective. Kind of like the fax machine. I believe that to reach the masses the TV, Radio and Print will once again emerge as the media of choice.”

The New Role Of A Fax Machine & Email

I like Eric’s comment. It suggests how the customary use of tools and techniques can change over time.

The activation of my fax machine generated the happy anticipation of new communication opportunities from this new technology. And then came the nuisance broadcast fax. What a pain to see all that paper..that I paid for..spilling from my machine to deliver messages and information that I neither wanted nor needed.

Now that my in-house fax service is long gone, I can still send faxes…from a nearby convenience store that charges $1.00 per page. For my fax volume, this arrangement works fine.

If you didn’t grow up with email, remember the enthusiasm with which you greeted our first email account? What a joy to be able to communicate instantly with others.

Now, with the explosive use of email, how do you feel about the spam that fills your in-boxes?

I think Eric has it right when he says:

“I believe that email will always be part of the paradigm for transmitting documents and direct correspondence. However as a method of reaching the masses it has become obsolete and way over used thereby becoming very ineffective. Kind of like the fax machine. “

Your thoughts?

 

3 thoughts on “How Email Is Like A Fax Machine

  1. Michael Katz

    I think its power lies inbetween the blast email to any address we can get our hands on (the 1999 approach) and simply posting to social media and/or a blog.

    When you’ve built an opt-in list of people who want to hear from you, it’s more powerful than either of those. Email shows up in your inbox, something we all check constantly. Until another medium eclipses that, it remains the single best marketing tool there is.

    Reply
  2. Sal Carrero

    I’m Afraid that people that say email is dead have no idea what they are talking about. They make this statement without any facts or figures. It’s just their opinion, remember you are not the market, the market is the market. We send out 50 million emails per month and only six months ago we were sending 43 million emails pm and 12 months ago it was 29 million per month.
    Email is here to stay for a long time yet as long as it is relevant.
    Also salesforce didn’t pay $2billion for email provider Exact Target because email was dead.

    Reply
  3. Bernie Siben, CPSM

    I agree that TV, radio and print are great ways to reach the masses. But they can be expensive, too expensive for many small businesses to afford. For a great many small businesses, “the masses” could mean 2,500 or 3,000 firms in a particular niche who might use their product or service, with no need to be seen by millions who won’t need what they provide.

    Reply

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