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Email : The Evolution of Deliverability

The more email changes, the more it stays the same

November 2012 By Kevin Senne
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Email deliverability has evolved considerably during the past decade. It started out as a niche discipline based on personal relationships and brand recognition, then underwent a seismic shift as several factors made it a necessity for everyone who sends email of any significant volume. The advent of deliverability technology saw the next major change in the market and allowed senders to have an idea of where they stood—i.e., "Am I being called a spammer?"—from an Internet Service Provider (ISP) perspective. That brings us to today and the future: Deliverability is a one-to-one science based on individual consumer choice.

Why does the history of email deliverability matter to email marketers today and the decisions that they will make? The past gives us the foundational pieces necessary to build a strong base and the information needed to be on the cutting edge of marketing technology. Successful deliverability is a combination of infrastructure, reputation, marketing skill, metrics, engagement and the ability to see the future.

The ability to see the future may sound like a bonus, but there is a crystal ball element to deliverability that can hedge bets for future success. Let's take a look back at the evolutionary story of deliverability and the things great marketers picked up along the way.

The Spam Wars
Our first stop is the humble beginning of deliverability. Spammers had started bombarding online service providers and ISPs alike with email traffic; if you remember what an AOL inbox looked like back in the day, you know what we're talking about. It was tough to distinguish actual email from the spam.

This email overload brought about the "Postmaster," an actual person who was in charge of controlling the flow of email. For early email marketers, this person was your best friend because of the ability to personally put you in the inbox with the click of a mouse. Brand recognition was also very important in this period. An up-and-coming brand stood a great chance of getting to the inbox simply because it was good business for providers to have them there. Content and readership weren't tracked or important at this stage.

There were two early technical developments that would become the foundation for modern deliverability. The first was the use of authentication as a method of identification.

 

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FROM THE BOOKSTORE

PDF FORMAT

<i>"Despite news to the contrary — especially from the social media space — reports of the death of email are greatly exaggerated. In fact, as your inboxes most likely show, email is growing and becoming even more sophisticated."</i> -- from <i>The Ultimate Guide to Email Marketing</i> 

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From the first six months of 2010 to the first six months of 2011 alone, there was a nearly 21 percent increase in email volume! The average number of emails received per day in the first six months of 2010 was 472, and during the first six months of 2011, the daily average increased to 571. Marketers are having success with their email campaigns and using it more and more.

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•	Email Marketing Trends in 2011
•	Best Practices in Writing Subject Lines
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•	Best Practices for Improving Email Performance
•	6 Ways to Make Your Emails Mobile-Ready
•	Email Branding — The 16 Most Effective Strategies
•	11 Best Creative Practices for B-to-B Email Marketing
•	The Keys to Developing a Successful E-newsletter
•	How to Determine Your Customers’ Email Content Tolerance
•	How Email Marketers Can Optimize the Social Media Opportunity
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This comprehensive report also offers three in-depth case studies, so you can see practical examples of how these methods worked for real-life businesses. "The Ultimate Guide to Email Marketing" is an essential tool for any business that ever sends an email. 

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<u>About DirectMarketingIQ</u>
The Research Division of the Target Marketing Group, DirectMarketingIQ (www.directmarketingiq.com) is the go-to resource for direct marketers. Publishing books, special reports, case study stockpiles and how-to guides, it opens up a new world for those who seek more information, more ideas and more success stories in order to boost their own marketing efforts. DirectMarketingIQ has unparalleled access to direct marketing data - including the world's most complete library of direct mail as well as a growing library of promotional emails across hundreds of categories - and proudly produces content from the most experienced editors and practitioners in the industry.

Note: You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader in order to read The Ultimate Guide to Email Marketing, which is in PDF format. The Ultimate Guide to Email Marketing

PDF FORMAT "Despite news to the contrary — especially from the social media space — reports of the death of email are greatly exaggerated. In fact, as your inboxes most likely show, email is growing and becoming even more sophisticated." -- from The Ultimate Guide to Email Marketing It's true....

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