3 Email Deliverability Myths Debunked
New marketing channels seem to arise daily, fighting for marketers’ attention. Thus it’s no surprise that many rely on assumptions about email best practices, though many of these assumptions are myths and can seriously impact a campaign’s success in a variety of ways, from poor email deliverability to blacklisting.
To remedy this common downfall, here are three of the most dubious myths marketers need to “unsubscribe to” in order to increase email deliverability and see better results from email marketing campaigns.
Myth 1: Activity Targeting Is the Answer to Every Email Deliverability Problem
The concept of Activity Targeting is simple: If you only email people who open and engage with your emails, your deliverability will improve. The thought is, you’ll improve bounce and complaint rates while demonstrating higher engagement rates. With positive feedback like that, you shouldn’t have any email deliverability problems, right? Close, but not necessarily. Activity Targeting is not a magic bullet. And truly, nothing is. Instead, implement practices that make sense to you and focus on personalization. While it may seem obvious, you should only send emails to people who want to receive them.
Removing spam traps is a similar quick fix for deliverability issues. Sure, you won’t hit that trap again, but it doesn’t fix your actual problem. If you’re not regularly reviewing your lists to ensure they are composed of valid addresses provided with clear consent, piecemeal trap removal won’t improve your reputation or deliverability. You’ll simply be playing catch-up until you adopt best practices that will eliminate these signals altogether. Be a good sender. Don’t send to addresses obtained without the owner’s consent, because it will undoubtedly come back to haunt you.
Myth 2: Email Deliverability Only Matters in the B2C World
On the surface, it would seem deliverability is only important to businesses sending emails directly to consumers to sell products or services. Consumers are savvy; they generally know what is and is not spam. The filters mailbox providers use can tell the difference too. Personal email inbox providers innately assume the addressee will receive marketing emails, and that fact is baked into how they handle receipt of those messages. But what about marketers who are B2B, and are typically sending emails to corporate email solutions that assume communication will primarily be one-to-one?
The differences between B2B and B2C email deliverability are monumental, so marketers must seek solutions specifically designed to tackle each individually. When you think about it, it makes sense. Your personal Gmail address is likely a little looser with spam filtering because you interact with marketing email to get coupon codes, discounts, etc. But if you use your work email primarily for business communications, a sales-oriented message, solicited or not, might raise a red flag to your ESP. You cannot assume non-spam email will be placed in the inbox properly. Thus, it is critically important to monitor your deliverability, regardless of who your customers are.
Myth 3: Email Deliverability Tools Are Only Necessary for Senders With Reputation Issues
Do you only go to the doctor when you’re sick? Well, maybe don’t answer that. The point is, wellness is something to be taken seriously at all times, not just when there is a clear problem. It’s much easier to maintain a successful email program when you’re consistently monitoring and optimizing performance. A brand with reputation issues likely wasn’t actively monitoring deliverability. Be proactive in maintaining your reputation with email deliverability monitoring tools and services to stay ahead of spontaneous issues that might arise. After all, you might think you have a fine reputation…and be wrong.
No one thing will solve all your email deliverability problems, yet deliverability is the key to successful email campaigns. Marketers should look at email in the same holistic way they look at the entire marketing mix. Just like other channels, there is no one-size-fits-all in email marketing, and email programs should be monitored and optimized accordingly.
Tim Moore is an email deliverability expert and the VP of Customer Solutions at 250ok. He is known as the Swiss Army knife of the deliverability world through previous experiences at Oracle Marketing Cloud, Message Bus and Return Path.