A few weeks ago, I was invited to speak on a panel about email deliverability at the Campaigns and Marketing Summit. Speaking to an audience filled largely with political organizations (in Washington DC? You’re kidding!), the panel focused on how these groups can build their lists the right way, engage better and avoid the deliverability pitfalls that often create huge problems.
If you’re not the video watching type, here’s an overview of what we discussed:
Good email marketing lists are filled with folks who subscribed to your mailing list. Purchased lists are often filled with bad email addresses, spam traps, honey pots, you name it.
The quality of these lists *may* be better than purchased lists, but these subscribers still did NOT sign up for your list. I recommend against it.
Most metrics suggest that on average, 30% of your email list will go bad in some way, shape, or form each year. People change jobs. People die.
Keep track of your opens and clicks. Establish benchmarks and look for downward spikes in these metrics. This could mean deliverability issues. Also keep track of your bounce rates, unsubscribed, and spam/abuse complaint rates. If you notice these numbers go up suddenly, you may have some issues with your list.
Taking this a step further, monitor these rates by domain. For example, if your list has a large percentage of, say, Gmail, you’ll want to monitor specific rates for your Gmail subscribers. Bad spikes here could hurt you at the domain level and cause damage to your overall reputation as well.
Start small. Simply segment out your actives from your inactives. How you define actives and inactives depends on your frequency and business model. From there, send special email campaigns to inactives to generate interest.
Thanks again to Campaigns & Elections for the opportunity to speak at the conference.
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