An expert has advised marketers to be sensitive to the complaints of their sales leads and clients.

Michael F Kelly, chief executive of Techtel Corporation, said new prospects coming into the market will be more likely to hear negative things about marketers’ brands, so firms should be ready to deal with any issues that could sabotage their image.

Writing on Marketing Profs, Mr Kelly stressed that negative opinions can seriously impede marketers’ ability to effectively communicate with and influence their markets.

He urged firms to pre-empt any brand damage by obtaining and tracking measures of negative opinion levels and the sentiments that go with them.

“Find the level of negative opinion in the market about your brand, company name, or product and services,” Mr Kelly commented. “That can be done via surveys, customer satisfaction [and] listening to web conversations.”

Marketers were also advised to determine the causes of negative opinions and look for policies, practices and services within their organisation that promise and do not deliver.

Writing in the Email Insider blog, marketing specialist Morgan Stewart recently warned against using first names in emails because they can trigger spam alerts.