Building An Email Newsletter
Before you begin building an email newsletter, you need to do some planning. Consider who you are...
If you’re spending time and money putting together an email marketing campaign you want to be sure that your messages are being delivered to their recipients. Unfortunately, bulk emails can look like spam to an email client, in which case they’ll be blocked or filtered out. Here are a couple of guidelines to follow if you want to avoid the spam filter:
1. Make sure you send emails only to people who really want them. Do not purchase email addresses. Each person on your mailing list should have specifically requested to receive your email through an opt-in method of subscription. In fact, it’s better to have a double opt-in process where subscribers are sent an email asking them to click to confirm their opt-in. Periodically send confirmation messages to users to make sure they still want to receive your email.
It would also help to show subscribers an example of the email they will be receiving as well as let them know the frequency with which you are going to be sending them emails. Make sure you stick to this. If you told your recipients that you’re going to send them a monthly email and then start sending them weekly, your mail is going to be marked as spam.
2. Make it easy to unsubscribe from your email. Put an obvious, clearly visible unsubscribe link in the body of the email that will take the user to a page confirming his or her intention to unsubscribe. Alternatively make it so that the user can unsubscribe by replying to your email with an unsubscribe request. When you get an unsubscribe request, respond to it immediately. Another way to ensure your messages aren’t flagged as spam is to unsubscribe users whose addresses bounce multiple pieces of mail.
3. Use email authentication to sign your emails. By authenticating your email, you are ensuring that the recipient’s email provider will be able to recognize the sender of the incoming message. It helps the email provider identify that the email is legitimately from you so it won’t classify your email as spam. There are three major authentication standards. They are Sender Policy Framework (SPF), Sender ID, and DomainKey Identified Mail (DKIM).
4. Always send bulk email from the same address. It helps the email provider as well as the recipients to distinguish your email from spam. If the emails look like they’re coming from different IP addresses then mail servers will start to assume that addresses are being spoofed and those emails will start to be flagged as spam. A static 'From:' address also helps users who have set up filters to route messages to a specific folder. Ask your subscribers to add this e-mail address to their address book. If the 'From:' address is listed in the user's contacts list, it is more likely to arrive in their inbox and not in the junk box.
5. Separate your IP addresses according to function. Don’t send bulk promotional mail from the same address that you send transactional mail. The reason for doing that is because the email provider stores reputation data about each email address you send from. By segmenting the mail stream you’ll make it more likely that the transactional mail will land up in your client’s inbox. If you don’t know how to do this, ask the team at Mail Blaze and we’ll sort it out for you.
6. Brand your marketing email so that recipients can quickly identify who it’s from and won’t mistake it as spam. Your email address should clearly identify your company. The subject line should include your company’s name too and should make explicit the content of the message.