What Are Email Marketing Best Practices

By | March 1, 2017

Before going into email marketing best practices, first let us understand,

  1. why do we need email marketing?
  2. What are the limitations of free email services(ex: gmail, yahoo, etc..)
  3. why do emails go to spam
  4. how to send bulk emails
  5. what are email marketing rules and regulations etc…

Email marketing is needed because we send and receive emails everyday, even with the invent of new technologies and social network platforms. Email has become part of our daily life and we are dependent on it. As we see below in the internet live stats, approximately,96 billion emails are sent everyday.

Email Marketing best practices

Limitations of free email services:

Generic Free email services like gmail, yahoo, hotmail etc… have limitations sending mails in a day. For example, gmail allow us to send max 150 emails in a day( 25 emails/hr). Even corporate email services have similar limitations ex: 250 emails/day.  So how to send more than 150 emails in a day , say 1 lac emails  or more…, ? we need to sign up with Email Marketing service providers for bulk emailing.

But why do free email service providers keep limitations on sending emails?

Because, spamsters / fraudsters were misusing the free email services in sending bulk unsolicited emails to unknown people/unrelated people, which resulted in the limitations.

Also, marketing companies, were sending bulk emails to non-subscribers or non-opt-in people, which resulted in crowded inbox,  and users were missing on important emails as they could not easily locate useful and important mails. So limitations were put in place by free email service providers.

Email Marketing Rules and Regulations:

To keep check on spamsters and marketers to prevent unsolicited emails and misuse of bulk emailing, several developed countries have framed Email marketing rules and regulations. CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 by US, is an important law enforced and followed by several countries in general. It also set standards for sending commercial emails by marketers.In India, there are no specific email marketing laws. Fines are levied on non complaint firms, indulging in bulk emailing violating the CAN-SPAM Act.

click on the below link to read more on CAN-SPAM ACT

CAN-SPAM ACT

How to do send Bulk Emails:

For email marketing, i.e for sending bulk emails, we need to sign up with Email marketing service providers(ESP) like Mailchimp, Aweber, Campaign Monitor, Constant Contact, Madmimi etc…, who have the necessary infrastructure to do bulk emailing.Big companies can also have their own email servers for bulk emailing. Some ESPs offer free email service for limited subscriber base,while all ESPs offer paid services,based on the no of subscribers you have.

Why emails go to spam:

Emails go to spam because they don’t comply with can-spam act. Basic reasons why mail goes to spam are

  1. unsubscribe option not there
  2. message content having spam words
  3. Authentication of sending domain not done
  4. mail sending servers are blacklisted
  5. sending bulk mails to harvested emails or spam trap emails
  6. message contains false header
  7. deceptive subject line
  8. sending more than 150 emails/day , if using generic free email services.

What are the Email authentication mechanisms?

Emails should be authenticated using authentication mechanisms like

  1. SPF( Sender Policy Framework)
  2. DKIM(Domainkey Identified Mail)
  3. DMARC(Domain Based Message Authentication,Reporting and Conformance)

Even gmail, yahoo etc.. are now following the authentication mechanisms strictly. So you can’t send bulk emails from these email ids now. You need to have your own authenticated domain for sending bulk emails.Else all your emails will go to spam folder.

What precautions should one take when using Services of Email Marketing Service Providers or email marketing companies?

  1. one should send mails from Authenticated domains
  2. make sure you get reputed IPs (not blacklisted IPs) for sending bulk emails
  3. Check if they have quick and responsive customer support

What are email marketing best practices:

  1. use your own domain for doing email campaign
  2. Authenticate your domain using SPF,DKIM and DMARC
  3. Select proper Email Marketing service provider
  4. send mails to subscribed users
  5. check your email database and remove invalid email ids.
  6. follow can-spam act
  7. do spam-content check before sending emails
  8. Use attractive subject line
  9. Use both text and images in message body
  10. Have textual alternative for images
  11. have clear call-to-action(CTA) in your message
  12. Use properly designed template with creatives, images, links and CTA
  13. Have neatly designed landing page
  14. use offers in the first few campaigns, for high open rates
  15. don’t expect high open rates in the first campaign itself
  16. Benchmark your open rates with your industry and try to get better open and click rates

About The Author

Hi, This is Ram Mohan, Digital Marketing Consultant from Bangalore. I am also a Trainer and Blogger on Digital Marketing. Know more about me here

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