Filtering unsolicited email messages or SPAM is a very important issue for everybody. Companies, Internet Service Providers and Email Providers are spending more and more resources to become effective to blocking Unsolicited Emails. They will blacklist anyone who will try to send SPAM and they will stop delivering emails from sources known as spammers.
At the same time, Internet Marketing has become an important business component for most of the Companies and Email Marketing is essential for many businesses. How can a company deliver its messages to clients and not get on spam-lists? This post will try to give you some guidance on how to avoid being placed on spam lists.
Rules to avoid being placed on Spamming Lists
User related rules
- Check the subject line of your email. Do not leave the subject line blank, have a long string of "Re:" or "Fwd:”, or use many exclamation or question marks or use all capital letters.
- Avoid blacklisted and spammy words in your subject line and message body. Common words blacklisted at different spam filters include pornographic terms, pharmaceutical terms, "free", "money", "mortgage", and "cash."
- Avoid adding many attachments, using only images or including a long list of URLs in the body of your email message.
- Reduce the number of identical emails you are sending at one time. Try sending your emails in smaller batches if you have many different people who need to receive the same email.
- Ask your email recipients to add you to their email program address book or white-list.
- If you suspect your computer has been infected by a virus or Trojan or any other form of Malware, contact the IT Department immediately.
- Do not use the Company’s email for personal use. Personal use includes but is not limited to:
- Electronic Communication for personal use
- Chain email letters – the distribution of chain letters is strictly interdicted using the corporate email. Chain emails are emails that ask or encourage you to forward the message to other people. Chain letters can include information about new viruses most of the times – hoaxes, promises of good luck, religious messages, request for help, etc…
- Subscribing to newsletters or email lists is not allowed using the corporate email address. By subscribing to such services, you expose your account and Your Company email server to SPAM.
- DO NOT send Unsolicited Email.
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How to avoiding the Spam Lists for the Email Administrator
- Use and maintain SPF policies. This will help other servers to determine any rogue sender that will try to spoof email addresses in your domain. Remember, maintaining the SPF record is mandatory. If you forget to update the SPF record when an infrastructure change, (such as a new SMTP server), is made other SMTP server will treat the new server as a possible SPAMMER and will flag legitimate email as SPAM.
- If your Marketing Department is using a new email Marketing Company, don’t forget to update the SPF records, (if they are using your regular addresses).
- Ideally, the Email Marketing Campaigns should be conducted under a different domain name, or a sub-domain. Example: yourcompany.com is your main domain and you are using email@example.com as email addresses and marketing. Yourcompany.com is your Email Marketing Domain Name and your address will be firstname.lastname@example.org.
- If your users use pop clients to connect to the server make sure you configure a submit port on your server (587), or install a certificate on your server and instruct users to use SSL for sending emails. This will avoid keeping the port 25 open for email clients. This should be open to servers only.
- Block port 25 for outbound traffic on your company’s firewall. This way even if your computers get infected with a Trojan they will not be able to send messages.
- The use of a good Anti-Malware is mandatory.
- Write and distribute policies in the company, this document could be a good start.
How to Avoid the Spam-Lists for the Marketing Department
- Do not send unsolicited emails – sending an email to someone who unsubscribed or never subscribed is the most serious SPAM offense.
- Do not use Outlook or any other email client to manage mass emailing. Marketers, sometimes, have the impression that the usage of such email clients for their campaigns, give them more control over the Mass Emailing. But in fact there is no way to manage opt-outs, you will use your own infrastructure for sending mass-emailing which is not good, and you can easily send duplicate messages to your recipients or not send at all.
- Do not use mass-emailing solutions for your email blasts. Your public IP address will be flagged as SPAMMER.
- For Mass Emailing, use Companies that are specialized in Email Marketing. They are setup so they minimize the risk to be flagged as SPAMMERS, the applications are feature rich, with tracking options, and give the recipients the opportunity to opt-out if they choose to.
- If you, still want to use in house mass emailing make sure you insert an unsubscribe address in your email.
- To make sure your email does not get in the Junk Mailbox, avoid using too many links in your email, and use as little space as possible for images.
- Do not send too many emails at once, even if the email is perfectly conceived, sending too many emails in a short period could trigger the SPAM filters, and your email will be blocked.