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BizReport : Email Marketing : January 15, 2016

How to lower your email risk

Inboxes are a funny thing. A brand can send fifty messages that land in the right box at the right time, but one mis-timed or mis-targeted email can start a string of bad luck. And, if a brand lands on a blacklist, the chances of ever landing back in the inbox decrease.

by Kristina Knight

We recently chatted with an expert who offers his advice for staying off the blacklists.

"Appearing on just one of the leading blacklists is enough to get you blocked by some ISPs. Senders with low complaints, who don't hit spam traps, and who send email consistently generally don't get blacklisted. However, if you do get blacklisted, having a good sending reputation will help convince the blacklist administrator to remove your IPs from their list," said Victor Amin, Data Scientist, SendGrid.

The first step, don't get labeled as SPAM.

To avoid the spam label, send messages that are relevant and timely to your customer base. Brands need to keep the complaint rates to less than 1% to be acceptable for some ISPs. Also, monitor your list.

"Sending to even one spam trap or "honey pot" will instantly set back your reputation and cause deliverability problems. When you send to a spam trap (an email address activated by an ISP to catch spammers), it means you're engaging in email address harvesting (an illegal practice) or your list hygiene practices are weak. Either way, ISPs aren't going to deliver your email," said Amin.

Next, keep the bounce rate low. Emails bounced because an account is no longer active or if an email box is full or if the customer has set an out of office reply. When emails bounce, subscribers aren't engaged so ensure the addresses in your list are up to date and that they aren't bouncing.

Finally, be consistent is both what you send and when.

"High-volume senders are always a red flag, especially when volumes are inconsistent. Do you send approximately the same number of emails each week or month, or is your mailing schedule all over the map? Consistent volumes based on subscriber preferences are a key consideration for ISPs," said Amin.

Image via Shutterstock

Tags: email content, email marketing, email tips, SendGrid

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