How to recover from an email disaster

Anyone who has ever had to send an email marketing campaign will know “The Fear” – the sense of dread you get when you personally are about to hit the go button on an email that is going to be received by potentially thousands and thousands of people. This fear also never leaves you. I have been sending email for 11 years now and I’m still very nervous when I send out emails. I always say, “there is ALWAYS time for another preview!”. Sometimes even to clients. I often test and retest to myself just to make sure I have got every last mistake fixed before the final send. But mistakes do happen to everyone at some point. It’s how…

Try reactivation before inactivation

Experience shows that many companies struggle with the concept of culling old data as they naturally want as big a pool as possible to target with their email campaigns, which is of course very understandable. However, as data ages there is no denying it becomes old and tired. Addresses may no longer be valid, they may stop engaging altogether and the risk of spam traps sneaking in increases, all of which will do your reputation no favours and may ultimately hurt your chances of delivering to your fresher, more engaged data. It is therefore very advisable to follow a hygiene process and be willing to get rid of old and unengaged data before it starts doing more harm than good.…

List growth today

Target your sign up messaging for a high quality email list Great sales and marketing programs deserve a great audience both in size and quality, so it is understandable that that lists and data quality are in the top three of priorities for marketers this year. If we want to increase our email list growth, where do we look? I oftentimes refer to a running joke from the services industry. It goes something like this: Our services are : 1) Cheap, 2) Fast, and 3) high quality. Pick two. It holds a lot of truth, often those three options don’t line up together, luckily there are ways to growing your email list while retaining quality. Your strategy for promoting signups…

Giving your subscribers inbox love

An inbox is a personal space, when someone invites you to send them email they are inviting you into that personal space. You should take this into account every time you email your subscribers. They expect you to be sending them an email they will enjoy. Achieving what I call “inbox love” is the state where people look forward to opening your emails, the state where people will do drop what they’re doing the second they see the notification pop up. I have two such emails at the moment; First off, I love receiving the NFL 1st and 10 email. Why do I love receiving this email? It’s beautifully presented in a way that makes the content easy to scan…

What should you be looking to report on and why? Part two

In the second of this two part series on email reporting (the first can be found here) I am going to look at delivery reporting, what it means and how it affects your email campaigns. Delivery reporting – what is it and how can you use it to improve your list health (which ultimately improves future inbox placement and subsequently ROI)? The first thing to look at is a reporting overview to give you a snapshot of your campaigns. This should immediately highlight any causes for concern. The numbers you are looking at here are delivered, anything under 98% for an opt in list should lead you to look at the reasons the undeliverable number is above 2-3%. Whether the…

Email delivery minefield

Email Delivery – practical tips for better email delivery

Email delivery is a minefield. The rules are always changing. What’s right for Hotmail, doesn’t work for Gmail. You need SPF compliance, Sender ID, DKIM, Domain Keys and DMARC. Some people say it’s best to send from a shared IP pool, some that it’s best to have your own IP. The goal posts keep moving and what you thought you knew last year has changed. Only this weekend there was a discussion on the Only Influencers email group discussing some possible Gmail changes last Thursday that have impacted Gmail delivery. Webmail clients, like Gmail, Yahoo and Outlook (Hotmail), never announce changes to their filtering methods so we’re all left to scramble around trying to guess what they’ve done. All of…

The Real cost of your legacy system

I recently met a prospect who asked me to help with a problem she was having with her email platform. She had commissioned a purpose built platform nearly ten years ago, the company that built it were taken over in 2008 and the new company stopped supporting and updating it in 2010. As she saw it, the system was still fit for purpose, i.e it was still capable of managing data, sending out email and it cost very little – just the monthly price of an SMTP server and a web server for image hosting. The perceived problem was that the creative needed to be fixed because she was experiencing some delivery issues. Before I met with her I registered on…