Is Your Email Address “Blacklisted?”

A lady emailed me yesterday very upset over the fact that her friend’s Internet Service Provider (ISP) wasn’t delivering important email messages. This lack of delivery caused a real problem for the two of them with ruined plans, missed appointments, and just plain inconvenience. If you don’t use email, this might not sound like a “big deal.” But this problem of non-delivery has dramatically affected the way businesses use email and how consumers receive email.

To put things into perspective, imagine if every time you dialed a friend’s phone number you had no idea whether it would ring or not. Now imagine how frustrated you would feel over time if you kept dialing the same number and it never rang for you, but others could get through and your friend’s phone number never changed. That’s exactly how you’ll feel when your personal emails start getting blocked for seemingly no reason.

The problem of legitimate email messages not getting through stems from the uncontrolled and unstoppable onslaught of spam that grips the Internet with seemingly no end in sight. The fact that viruses can “spoof” email addresses and make it look like someone sent a virus to thousands of people doesn’t help matters either. In an effort to cut down on spam, ISP’s implement a number of counter-measures, including: text filters, spam databases, and IP blocking. If your email message doesn’t get delivered, most of the time it means you inadvertently got caught in an ISP’s “defense system.”

If you ever find your email messages don’t get through, or if you’d like to head off problems before they occur, the following tips should help.

Here are a few tips if you are mailing to people who have subscribed or opted in to receive email from you:

Encourage all your subscribers to “whitelist” your email address in their email program. 

They can do this by adding you to their approved contact list. In Gmail, if they drag your email to the primary folder, this also helps with whitelisting your emails.

Don’t waste your subscribers’ time.

Send valuable content that has your subscribers super excited to open your email. 

Don’t use misleading subject lines!

Nothing makes me hit the spam button faster than to open an email to find the content inside it completely different from the what the subject line promised!

This is your headline. It is what will get people to open your email. Don’t ruin your credibility with a flashy headline that has nothing to do with the content inside the email.

Know the email laws for your country.

For this one, contact your lawyer, doctor, veterinarian for the laws in your country, state, territory, principality that you need to follow. I am not a lawyer. 😊

Keep your IP reputation clean.

It is highly recommended when you are starting with an email list that you warm up the IP address. This warmup helps the email clients learn your sending behaviors and how your subscribers react to your emails. If the email clients (Gmail, Yahoo, Apple Mail) like what they see, the easier time your email will have getting through.

Use images appropriately.

Too many images in your email could land you in the spam box. MailChimp recommends a ratio of 80% text to 20% images.

Make sure you have a link to contact your support desk.

This way if a subscriber has a question; the way to easily reach you is right there in the email.

Include an unsubscribe link.

People move on, interests change. But forcing them to stay on your list when they don’t want to will lead to many spam complaints. Thus making it harder for your emails to be delivered to people that do want to hear your message and connect with you.

By the way, if you want your subscribers frantically chomping at the bit to read your emails, check out Secret #18 from my best-selling book, Copywriting Secrets! If you don’t have a copy yet, no worries! Just pay a small shipping and handling fee and I’ll send you the book for FREE:

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