Sep 24, 2009

Email marketing is like a night out in a club!

Let's think about it, sending an email and having the receiver to transform is a little bit like going out in a club to score.
Let me just call my email John.

John wants to score.
He is in his apartment downtown and is dressing up. If he wants to score he probably has to dress as well as possible to be the more attractive possible. This is the creative.

Once ready he heads to the club, this is the broadcast.

If he arrives there without any incident (delivery) he gets in the line outside the club and wait for his turn.

Then he gets to go through the bouncer (the spam filter) who will let him go in if:
1 - he matches the dress code (Tidy HTML)
2 - he never went in a fight in the club or got thrown out (Reputation)
3 - He isn't drunk and talking crap (content scan)

When he gets in (inbox) he spots a good looking girl he likes ifhe already knows her, she's a client, else, she's a prospect.

He gets close to her and then throw his pick up line (subject line). There are several types of pick up lines:
1 - If you lie about yourself, it's a scam
2 - If you are too mysterious, you might loose her attention
3 - If yo are too long you might be boring.
In a few words, your subject line needs to be as good as your pick up lines: short, punchy and interesting.

If the girl gets in the discussion with John, then he got a click, but there's a lot more to do to score.

He has to try to keep the discussion live and interesting and to gather as much information about the girl so he knows what she likes, what she wants,... that's web analytics.
The interesting thing here is that even if he doesn't score right away with that girl, the more information he will get here, the more likely he is to score on a later night when they get to meet again.

As I see it, email marketing is like trying to score with hundreds, thousands of persons in one go.

Sep 16, 2009

Don't mix up towels and dishcloths

This French saying is so true when it comes to email marketing !
If you own a database that you use to communicate with your clients and then all of a sudden, you plan to rent it, then it's probably one of the worst ideas ever to broadcast it on the same environment as usual (by environment I mean IPs and broadcasting domain or email mainly).

I recall a presentation I attended in Madrid where the hotmail representative explained that transactional emails shouldn't be broadcasted on the same IPs as the newsletter.
I do not agree 100% on this, I tend to believe that if your optin process is clean and that you treat your subscribers with care, the Newsletter shouldn't jeopardize your transactional emails' deliverability. On the contrary, transactional emails could slightly improve your overall (already good) reputation.

BUT, when it comes to sending information to your clients on one hand and sending advertising on the other: YOU HAVE TO SEPARATE BOTH.

According to measures I made roughly on my client's broadcasts, complaint rates are twice as high.

Advertising for your brand and advertising for a third party company are two different things and as such are percieved differently by your subscribers.

Why take the risk?

Sep 15, 2009 not handled by Outblaze anymore?

All of you email marketers out there who know Outblaze (and about email deliverability), know how harsh they are on filtering incoming emails.
Up to recently, was managed by Outblaze. Laura from the "Word to the Wise" blog noticed some changes on the MX settings of, now pointing to AOL.

This will probably lead to a lot of changes on the way emails are received or filtered on addresses.

You can read the original post here

Sep 12, 2009

New feedback loops at returnpath (Tucows)

Returnpath just announced on their blog that they released a new feedback loop for Tucows.
This feedback loop have been added to the Email-Ethics list of feedback loops.

I also added the Rackspace feedback loop to the list.

Sep 9, 2009 : it's done now!

As mentioned on a post I made in June on this blog to announce the end of the domain, email addresses stopped working a couple of days ago. The smtp error message received when sending to this domain now is:
571, [ prohibited. We do not relay]

You can now get rid of all email addresses still inside your DB.

Sep 4, 2009

Do not mail these domain names

Thanks to Robomail, I discovered a list of domains which clients are usually on cell phones, it is very important (even more than usual) not to send unsolicited emails to emails which domain is on this list.
The list is available (and updated) on the FCC website
You can download it here.
For more information you can also read this List of anti-spam laws article