The more seasoned email marketers already know most of these tips, but we all need some recap every now and then to remind us of the best practices in email marketing, so that we can improve our email marketing practices for better reputation and delivery. In this post, we list down 10 most recommended tips that you should know.

  1. Make your unsubscribe link obvious
    Decide on a suitable and yet prominent area in your campaign email where you can insert your unsubscribe link.  This makes it obvious to your subscribers that you already provide them a way to tell you to stop sending them your emails, which should discourage them to use the “spam” button in their email clients.  Some marketers have recommended placing the link at the top or in the footer of the email.  It’s entirely up to you, but be sure to always include one.  If you are using an ESP, like eConnect Email, you will always be reminded to include your unsubscribe link before you can send your campaigns.
  2. Give your subscribers a way to update their subscription preferences
    Set up a subscriber preference center so that your subscribers can manage their subscription preferences.  A preference center can help you to retain subscribers who have changed their email addresses by giving them a convenient way to update you without needing to resubscribe to your lists again.  Check out more on why you need a preference center.
  3. Encourage your subscribers to add you to their address books
    Tell your subscribers explicitly to add your email address to their address books. Write something like “Don’t miss your newsletter.  Add our email address (friends@abccompany.com) to your address book or safe list”.  Many web mail providers use this as a basis to determine that if the recipient has your email address in their address book, then your email should less likely be spam.  Some clients will even load the images in your campaign emails automatically.
  4. Use the same email address to build reputation
    Always use the same From email address for your campaign emails and refrain from using different email addresses for different mailing lists or campaigns.  By using the same email address, not only will it be easier for your subscribers to associate the campaign emails with your company, you will also be able to build a better reputation with the ISP’s and your subscribers, which in turns means better deliverability for your email campaigns.
  5. Sign your emails for domain authentication
    Get your domain properly set up with domain authentication schemes like DKIM, DomainKeys and SenderID, and sign your campaign emails to bolster the authenticity of your emails.  Most ESPs today provide some ways for you to set this up easily.  If you are already on board with eConnect Email, but have yet to set up domain authentication for yourself, you should do it today!
  6. Avoid “spammy”content
    Be very mindful about the language and visual formatting of your content. Avoid using “spammy” words or phrases, large fonts, sparse text and low quality images, all of which are quite the hallmarks of today’s spam emails.
  7. Make sure your campaign emails can be viewed correctly
    If you are sending HTML campaign emails, be sure to also set up the text part of the email properly so that subscribers who are not able to view the HTML version in their email software will still be able to read the content of your email.  The text part does not have to be an exact text-only replica of your HTML message; you can have a simple message to direct them to an online version of your campaign email, which they can view in their web browsers.
  8. Avoid list fatigue
    Do not flood your subscribers with too many emails.  Marketers recommend that you send at most one email per week.  If email marketing is one of the major sources of income for your business, make sure you plan and time your launches or new updates properly.  If you are working in large corporation, make sure the different departments who are responsible for sending emails are aware of the sending frequency of one another.  Without proper planning, your subscribers may feel overwhelmed and may end up unsubscribing themselves or reporting your emails as spam.
  9. Respect your subscribers
    Make sure your subscribers get what they signed up for.  Unless you have made it explicitly clear to them, you should never send them emails containing information that they never asked for. Let’s say you own a business selling coffee beans and tea leaves and you maintain a mailing list for each of these two products.  If a subscriber only signed up for coffee bean information, respect that, and only send newsletters that are related to coffee beans to that subscriber.  Then, invite the subscriber to also sign up for the tea leaves mailing list.  This way, you can let your subscribers know about your other products, but not without asking for their permission first.
  10. Check and test, check and test
    Check your campaign thoroughly and send yourself a few test messages before sending out your campaigns.  Nothing is more embarrassing than grabbing the attention of your subscriber, only to direct them to a “Page Not Found” error page when they click on your links.

That’s it!  Always keep these 10 tips in mind when running your email campaigns.  Have you got your own suggestions that you wish to share too?  Go ahead and fire away in the comments.

About James Trumbly:
Director of Business Development for eConnect Email, an email marketing software company. James enjoys spending time at the beach and traveling in his free time. Follow him on twitter @eConnectEmail