One of the greatest problems facing CRM and engagement software like Vega is making sure that your email goes to the user's inbox instead of going to the junk folder, truly, how many of us check our junk or spam folders regularly?
Depending on the security settings and the service email your supporters use, it is almost impossible to stop them from being flagged by spam filters. Nonetheless, we can avoid this by using what marketers call improve email deliverability.
Tip No 1: "Clean" Your Email List
Most, if not all, email providers' spam filters penalise your domain or IP with a higher spam score (meaning there's a higher possibility of your emails going to junk folder) if they see that you are sending emails to bad email accounts. A bad email account is an address that doesn't exist, has been disabled or has a full inbox. These addresses should be cleaned from your email list regularly to avoid this. If you allow them to add up on your list, you will eventually be flagged as a spam provider.
Tip No. 2: Become the Contact
Once a donor has added you to his or her contact list, friend list or address book, you will always end up in their inbox. Use every opportunity to encourage those on your email list to add you as a contact. We suggest doing it in the Newsletters content, Headers and Footers etc. A typical way to ask contacts to do this is to say, "Ensure that you continue to receive the quality information from us that you enjoy by adding us to your contact list."
Tip No. 3: Test Your Email
Before you send your entire email list the message you've worked so hard on, send a test message to each of the big email providers (Hotmail, Yahoo, MSN, Gmail and one generic office address that is viewed in an Outlook client). If the test ends up with most of your emails going to junk folder, then it means you'll end up in the junk box on your main send also. The email send test means that you can try different subject lines and email content to try to figure out what sent you to spam.
Tip No. 4: Don't Use "Big Images"
Embedding images in email is not totally a bad idea, but sending an email that's all one big image file definitely is, for many reasons. Foremost among reasons is that spam filters look for those types of image-based emails. Big image files often carry hidden messages that would normally get caught in spam filters (words like "free"), so, when a spam filter can't read any real text in an email and only sees an image, it assumes the worst.
Tip No. 5: Don't Sound Like a Spammer!
The more "spam-like" text and phrases your email uses, the less likely it is to end up in the inbox. There are a number of free software solutions to check the "spam score" of an email before you send it, but there are also basic rules.
- Don't use the word "free" too many times.
- Don't use ALL CAPS.
- Don't use lots of coloured fonts.
- Only use one exclamation point at a time!
- Stay away from words you'd see in spam: medicine drugs, a guaranteed winner.