Yahoo!’s Security Breach And What It Means For Your Email Sending

Last week, the Internet was shaken by another scandal on data security. Yahoo! announced that the credentials of 500 million of their user accounts had been stolen back in 2014. We know you heard about this and have a million questions. Worry not, Mailjet’s here to make sure you know exactly what’s going on, how it may impact you as a sender and to help you tackle the consequences.

Wait, what happened?

On September 22nd, Yahoo! published an important message on their user security. It revealed a massive security breach going back to 2014. The credentials of 500 million Yahoo account users were stolen and had been put up for sale by a hacker (allegedly, the same hacker who had been involved in the Linkedin and Tumblr’s security scandals). 

According to Yahoo!’s announcement, the data that had been stolen included:

  • Names,
  • Email addresses,
  • Hashed passwords,
  • Telephone numbers,
  • Dates of birth,
  • Security questions and answers.

Bank account data and protected passwords don’t seem to be among the stolen data, according to the investigation that is still ongoing.

Potentially affected users have been contacted by Yahoo! and all users are strongly recommended to change their passwords if they still use the same one as they had in 2014.

 

Does This Impact Me As A Sender?

Such a massive leak is likely to have a lot of consequences, and yes, it could have an impact on you. More precisely, it could have an impact on your deliverability.

Some Email Service Providers have already started reporting a high hard bounce rate linked to Yahoo! accounts. This may be related to Yahoo! deactivating accounts that would have been operated by the hackers who got access.

It is also likely that at least part of Yahoo! users might feel that their data isn’t secure anymore with that address. Imagine that your name, the keys to your place and your address had been out in the open for a year and a half. Some people will just change their lock, but others might even desert their house and move to a new one… Which means that a lot of people might give up their email IDs, close their accounts and move to new ones, resulting in a high number of hard bounces for your campaigns.

 

Nope, this isn’t the hard bounce we’re talking about.

Nope, this isn’t the hard bounce we’re talking about. 

Hard bounces are responses received from Yahoo! indicating the sender has sent to an invalid or inactive address. Hard bounce rates are part of the criteria Internet Service Providers use to gauge the quality of a sender’s list and reputation, so having a high hard bounce rate could potentially cause a negative effect on your deliverability.

Now you could be wondering: “If the issue is known, ISPs should be more flexible and raise their threshold when it comes to defining a bad level of hard bounce, right?”. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy. These filters are operated by complex algorithms hunting phish and fraud, not by real humans. They track your metrics as a sender against what they deem to be “normal” for most legitimate senders.

So here’s what’s likely to happen:

  • If your hard bounce rate raises just a little, but the rest of your metrics are still OK and you’ve had good statistics, the impact will be minimal – perhaps just a few cases of emails landing in the junk folder.
  • If your hard bounce rate raises a lot, it might result in a lot of messages going to the junk folder while it remains high, and maybe for a few days after your rates are back to normal;
  • If you see a peak in your bounce rate, you may see some messages rejected, blocked temporarily by ISPs for several hours, or even several days.

What Can I Do To Limit The Damage?

In order to protect your sender’s reputation, we recommend that you monitor your bounce rate very closely. At Mailjet, we have a 8% bounce threshold within our sending policySo make sure you keep an eye on it, as anything higher may result in a rate limitation.

We recommend that you remove all the bounce addresses from your contact list after each campaign that you send during the next few weeks. It might seem slightly painful, but it is definitely the quickest and safest way to get your bounce rate back to normal and limit the damage on your deliverability.

 

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If you want to address the Yahoo users who could be tempted to close their account but haven’t done it yet, you could create a segmented list that targets those with Yahoo contacts that have been “active” during the the last three to six months (those who opened/clicked in your recent campaigns). Send a specific campaign to offer them to update their preferences and give them a chance to provide a new email address to proactively ensure that your mail follows them to their new address.

 

Have you noticed any impact on your latest email campaigns following the Yahoo! security breach announcement? How do you plan to tackle it? Tell us more on Twitter.

Marketing To The Over 55s: A Research Report

In September 2016, Mailjet commissioned a new piece of research to understand how consumers in the UK over the age of 55 view communication with the travel brands they interact with. The survey was taken by over 1000 consumers from across the UK.

The research looked at how consumers over the age of 55 interact with technologies and how they’re being targeted by travel brands at this time of year. The research also aims to highlight why email should be part of your marketing strategy to engage these consumers.

Are you targeting your customers differently, depending on their age? Download the report to gain insights into what the over 55s market expects from brand communication, specifically in the travel and tourism industry. 

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Quiz: What Kind Of Spammer Will You Be This Holiday Season?

Soon, that time of the year will come. You know, that time when turkeys and other feathered animals fear for their lives, families gather to eat, drink and then eat some more, and kids wake up unusually early to check out what Santa’s brought them.

Halloween, Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Christmas, New Year’s Eve… they’re all just around the corner, and you need to be prepared. We know you have been working on your emailing strategy for Quarter 4 throughout the summer: you’ve freshened up your contact lists, you’ve created a series of holiday templates, brainstormed great marketing ideas… You feel ready to go.

But what if you weren’t as organized? What if you were… a spammer? ?

Obviously, you’re not a spammer. Proof is you’ve been reading our blog and following the deliverability tips and best practices we regularly write for you. But what if (and we’re only speculating here) you had this spamming alter ego, waiting to take advantage of the holiday season to send poorly executed emails to unwilling recipients? What kind of spamming supervillain would you be?

We know you can’t wait to find out. That’s why we’ve come up with this quiz, so you can meet this other you that’s living on the dark side of emailing.

Intrigued? Let’s go!

 

 

 

Want to define your email strategy to win customers over this holiday season? Check out Mailjet’s Ultimate Guide To Holiday Emailing.

Holiday Emailing Guide

Gmail Finally Embraces Responsive Email Design

If we were to ask email developers what would be the one thing they’d change about their job, we’re sure many would say “Gmail”. Google Mail’s restrictive requirements when it comes to coding responsive emails have been a time-sucking nightmare for years. But that could be about to change.

Last week, Gmail announced they’ll be making an important update that will change the way the email client deals with code. What does this mean? It means developers’ love-hate relationship with Gmail might soon turning into a love-love relationship.

 

So, what is the problem with Gmail, anyway?

Back in the day, people would access their emails on their desktop computers, with nice, big screens. Nowadays, people access their emails from a range of devices, all of which have multiple screen sizes: mobile, tablets, desktop, wearables… Responsiveness is now key. Designs now need to be easily readable across different platforms, adding yet another challenge to the developer’s work.

When it comes to the structure of your email, the easiest way to target different devices to achieve responsiveness is by using media queries. Basically, media queries are a way to alter the elements in your design, mainly depending on the screen size the message is read on. However, media queries are not yet supported by Gmail, which means that ensuring your designs rendered properly on all of these devices is a real pain.

gmail responsive email design

 

But Gmail’s restrictions are not limited to media queries. While with other webmail providers it just takes a few lines of code to add embedded styles at the top of your HTML file to ensure your message is consistently formatted the way you want across all email clients and devices, this is not an option with Gmail. In its attempts to protect users against security threats, Google’s email solution strips out most of what’s in the <head> tags, including that embedded style. This ultimately means that developers need to specify the formatting of every tag they want to style by using the always-reliable-but-incredibly-time-consuming inline styles. A workaround for this is to rely on the aria-labelledby hack to target elements that you can’t address with the classic “class” and “id” attributes, like our open source markup language MJML does.

 

OK, that’s not good. So, how will this update change things?

Well, for starters, Gmail has announced they will start supporting media queries, which will significantly ease the pain of coding responsive emails that look beautiful on every device. Now, stacking different blocks in your multi-column designs or targeting different screen sizes will be way simpler.

media queries gmail responsive email

And that’s not all. Gmail has also announced that they will start supporting embedded styles, including classes and IDs, which were previously stripped. By doing so, Gmail gives developers the opportunity to finally move away from the inline styles. This is a huge improvement and will have a massive impact on the time spent coding an email. Combined with media queries, this is significant step forward in the battle to conquer responsiveness across all devices.

What this means, overall, is that there won’t be a need to use the aria-labelledby hack anymore.

 

Amazing! What will this mean to me, then?

Basically, it means Gmail won’t be the main cause of your coding problems anymore (at least for a while). Thanks to embedded styles and media queries, developing responsive emails that display a consistent structure and formatting across different devices will become easier and quicker.

Google has not yet announced when this update will come into effect or which versions will be affected (Gmail web, iOS, Android, Google Apps for Work, Inbox…), so, although we’re really excited about the news, we haven’t popped the champagne corks yet.

However, coding emails is far from being universal and there are still many differences between webmail providers that might impact the responsiveness of your messages. So, unfortunately, the fact that Gmail is now not as challenging doesn’t make it easier to code responsive emails for other email clients. On top of that, keeping up with these changes is always a struggle, no matter how good you are at following the updates on Mailjet’s blog and Twitter. That’s exactly why we released MJML, our responsive email framework, abstracting all of these email client-specific changes and difficulties in an easy-to-learn language. One of the perks of using MJML is that all your previous templates will still be responsive after this update. No need to do anything to them. Nice, huh?

 

Have these news changed your life and want to share the joy? Or are you still thinking “I’ll believe it when I see it”? Head to our Twitter and let us know how you feel about Gmail’s announcement!

Introducing Mailjet’s Dedicated API Support

You know that feeling you get when you need to contact customer support? Now imagine being a developer. If we have a problem, it’s usually a complicated one that not just anyone can answer. That’s one reason why over here at Mailjet, we relentlessly improve our API Guides, Developer’s Zone, and libraries in order to make the lives of devs a bit easier when they’re stuck. Thanks to all the great feedback you sent our way, we’re confident things are moving in the right direction.

But can we do even better? Of course, we can. Today, we’re excited to announce that our support team has welcomed and trained two dedicated API support agents over the summer.

As our product offer grows, we think it’s necessary to provide more specialized support, and API is definitely a topic where expertise makes a difference. API support involves reading, executing and troubleshooting code samples in many programming languages (often including ones we don’t really master), to understand what could be improved or fixed to enable your emails to reach their destination. It requires patience and a great understanding of software development, along with great knowledge of how our API works.

 

What’s changing?

From now on and moving forward, when you open a support ticket, you’ll be able to tag it as an API question, helping us triage, to enable our dedicated support agents to take them into consideration and handle them personally. Of course, the rest of our support team will still be available to answer some of your less technical API questions.

Providing our developer community with a dedicated support channel is definitely not new to us. Since last year, our dedicated email address “api@mailjet.com” has been the place for the community to reach out to the Developers Relations team, a direct link between you and our expert, where we’ve been helping and guiding users with their API related questions.

No matter how passionate we are about email design and delivery, we believe there are still better ways to deal with and track support questions, and API support is no different. For that reason, from October 1st, api@mailjet.com will sunset as a support channel and it will become again that place to which to send us your feedback and your love (OK, and get some swag too, we know you love it… ?).

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Github remains the place to discuss about our official wrappers’ improvements and fixes. Github is key to our work, not only because of the valuable conversations we have with the community, but also because of all the feedback we get from all those contributors who are taking the time to report issues or open Pull Requests to improve the libraries. Thank you, guys. You definitely help make our tool better.

 

Meet Zhivko and Mike

On top of everything we’ve already stated, like the expertise and the short internal circuits to handle API questions, we also believe making support as personal as possible is key to building strong relationships with our users.

This is the reason why we want to introduce you to the two support angels who will be tackling all your API issues and ensuring your experience with Mailjet is as good as it can be. For now, API support will only be available in English. Since us, developers, are used to English when dealing with tech, we believe it’s a good starting point.

And without further ado, meet Zhivko Zhelev, who will be answering your API questions and troubleshooting any issues you might experience. Zhivko is based in Sofia, Bulgaria, and works side by side with Emmanuel Boisgontier (the wizard behind our API documentation and many of the API support answers so far). Zhivko will be in charge of API support for Europe.

Michael Pauer (or Mike, for us at Mailjet), is part of the Mailjet crew since 2013, ensuring your questions get answered while the European Mailjet team is sleeping. Over the years, Mike has had to wear many hats and learn the ins and outs of our tool and system, including our API. Mike will oversee the API support for the North American timezone.

We hope you’ll appreciate this new way of organizing our team and that your experience with our platform will continue getting better.

 

Feel free to share your questions and feedback with us on Twitter or by reaching out to as at api@mailjet.com

 

How Mailjet Powered Linxo With Its Extra Secure Email Delivery

There’s something appealing about problem solving. What does the blue flower stand for? How can you get the fox, the goose and the bag of beans across the river? Could you survive the fire in a burning island? There’s something geeky, challenging and satisfying that comes with logical problem solving and, at Mailjet, if something’s at the same time geeky, challenging and satisfying… Well, we’re all on board from the get-go.

There’s nothing we like best than to be faced with a problem, a brain-splitting email equation that requires our undivided attention and technical expertise. That’s why, when Linxo approached us looking for a custom-made, secure, reliable and scalable email delivery solution, we didn’t think twice about it and got down to work.

Read the full Linxo Case Study here.

 

OK, so what is Linxo and why do they need extra secure email delivery?

Paris-based Linxo is a tool that enables people to track and manage all of their financial accounts in real time, from one single interface. How cool is that? No more excuses for being broke or spending too much money on the latest tech gadget or designer shoes. The platform rolls up savings, credit and balance, allowing users to have a better control of their budget and more transparent finances. Customers can easily access the information, either on Linxo’s website or via the mobile app, and can set up notifications (push or email) that are triggered by certain activities or scenarios, like high spending or the risk of an overdraft.

Seeing what Linxo does and the kind of information it gathers, it’s not hard to imagine why safety is top of the list when it comes to their email needs. With data security constantly making the headlines and Patricia Arquette leading the CSI Cyber team, there’s no doubt data protection is trending in the digital world.

 

linxo

The almighty Mailjet and Linxo duo

When Linxo set out to find a reliable and easy-to-use email solution, safety was their main concern. Mailjet’s tech team worked closely with the Paris-based company to understand their security needs and developed a custom solution that would not only protect their users, but also meet local regulations. “Mailjet immediately understood our issues of security and privacy,” explained Bruno Van Haetsdaele, Co-founder and CEO of Linxo.

On top of the strict French legislation and the assurance provided by our use of only European servers, Linxo adds an extra layer of security to protect the information that is passed from their Mailjet account to their internal servers.

But cybersecurity was not it for Linxo. With the heart of their product resting on email notifications, first-class deliverability and scalability were also pivotal aspects their email service provider had to be able to offer.

Well, did someone say first-class deliverability? That definitely sounds like us. Mailjet’s proprietary deliverability technology and our team of internal deliverability experts allowed Linxo to rest easy knowing their emails would land safely in the right inbox at the right time.

Linxo also doubled its user base and its email sending volume in the space of a year. And, as the platform continues to grow, providing a solution that can scale with their email needs becomes just as important. “We have relied on Mailjet since 2012, mainly because of their flexible adaption to our email needs,” continued Haetsdaele. “In our service-based Mailjet, we knew we would not have to worry about the scalability of our email program. As our sending volume continues to grow, it’s been easy to increase traffic while maintaining the quality of service.

 

How can Mailjet help your business?

Did we already mention that we like a challenge? Yeah, we do. We love challenges and problem solving, so why not give us something to work on? Whatever your email needs are, no matter how complex they may seem, we’re always up for working with our customers and creating tailor-made solutions to provide the best email delivery and consulting services.

With Mailjet, you can manage your marketing and transactional emails from one single platform, benefiting from Passport, our easy-to-use editor, or leveraging our powerful API. Our fast-track onboarding service and personalized support and ongoing assistance allow businesses to understand and learn how to make the most of their email sending. To top it off, with our unrivaled deliverability, we’ve got the email solution your company needs.

Convinced? Good.

Now, on to the really important stuff. Do you think you would be able to survive the fire in the island?

 

Want to know what Mailjet can do for you? Check out Mailjet Enterprise or get in touch and tell us about your specific needs.

Find out more about how Mailjet helped Linxo here.

Improve Your Email Deliverability: The Secrets To Send Your Holiday Emails Straight To The Inbox

Is there anything worse than putting your blood, sweat and tears into creating the perfect email campaign, just to see it land in the spam folder? We don’t think so. If you still haven’t cracked the code to enter the secret world of email deliverability, don’t panic. It’s not too late to discover how to get your holiday emails to land in the recipient’s inbox.

For many of you, your busiest season is coming up and you’ll want to make sure that your marketing campaigns are in the best shape possible to maximise on the potential opportunity. You’ll be wanting your email marketing campaigns to reach their intended destination. Follow our helpful pointers to guide your holiday emails to the inbox.

Make sure the ISPs know it’s you

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Firstly, it’s a good idea to make sure your recipients know they’re receiving an email from you. Choose a from name that represents your brand, perhaps it is as simple as your brand name (i.e. Mailjet). Your domain name will also need to be linked to your company’s website, to prove you are who you say you are. We’ve all received SPAM emails from people who from a distance look reputable. But if you look a little closer, you’ll see their dodgy domain name and hopefully think twice before clicking on any fishy links.  

Secondly, you’ll want the ISPs (Internet Service Providers) to know who you are, and that you’re one of the good guys. Set up your SPF (Sender Policy Framework) authentication, so your emails reflect your DNS record. You’ll also want to set you DKIM (DomainKeys Identified Mail), another authentication that reflects your DNS record. The final layer of authentication is to set up DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance). If this all sounds like nonsense, don’t worry, all reputable email service providers (like Mailjet ?) will have support teams to help you make sure you’re set up to get the best possible deliverability.   

Finally, while you’re on the deliverability best practice bandwagon, make sure your WHOIS is up-to-date and publicly viable. That way everyone knows who you are, that you’re a credible company and, more importantly, not a spammer. If you’re already sending emails, hopefully you’ll have some of our email deliverability best practices (if not all) in place already. If not, “chop chop” and get it implemented so you can maximise your holiday email marketing efforts. Need more ideas? Check out our Email Deliverability best practice guide.

Get your content on point ?

Your email content not only needs to capture and engage your audience, it should also follow a few golden rules to ensure your emails land safely in the intended recipient’s inbox. Engaging content starts with the subject line. Always opt for something enticing, but be sure not to use CAPITALS or spammy words such as “free”, “cash”, etc. This is not exclusive to your subject line, but also applies to the body of your email. It’s also important to keep the subject line between 35 and 50 characters long – this will prevent you from looking like a spammer and make it easier for the recipient to understand the content of your email.

Create content that is contextually relevant to your subscribers. For example, you could segment your data not only by gender, but also by age group so you send content that’s applicable to their generation. If your email is relevant to your recipients, they are more likely to open it, which will help in your email deliverability reputation battle. Do you sell gifts? Segment the gift type based on the customer’s previous purchases, or by your most popular categories for those who have never purchased from you.

Finally, let your recipients know they’ll be hearing from you. Send your emails consistently. For example, if you’re sending a weekly email, you might find that Tuesday is your prime day. Or if you email a recipient after an action, you may have even mastered the art of emailing in real-time. You have time to test and find your optimal sending frequency before the holiday season kicks into action.

Don’t buy data…

It is never a good idea to buy something that the recipient doesn’t want to receive. Perhaps you’ve bought your loved one a gift that is more suitable to your tastes than theirs… The same applies to buying data. The members of the list do not want to hear from you, so in layman’s terms, it’s a waste of money.

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Make the effort to clean your existing contact list by sending inactive contacts a ‘we miss you’ email to see if you can re-engage them. If they don’t want to hear from you anymore, removing them from your email list will improve your email stats. Worried you’ll have no one to send your amazing campaigns to? Use your social channels to grow your email contact list. They say that the money is in the list, so make your list as strong as it can possibly be.

Remember, it is not too late the strengthen your email deliverability so you are at the top of your game for the busy holiday season.

If you’ve had success implementing some of our deliverability secrets, share it with us. We’d love to hear your success stories, so tweet us @Mailjet using the #MailjetDelivers ?

 

Want to define your email strategy to win customers over this holiday season? Check out Mailjet’s Ultimate Guide To Holiday Emailing.

Holiday Emailing Guide

 

Email Blogging: The New Holy Grail Of Digital Marketing?

Sometimes mixing things together is just creepy, like that weird “puppy, monkey, baby” creature Mtn Dew tried to tempt us with during this year’s Super Bowl. Some other times, though, combining two cool things can produce a new and improved sense of awesomeness, like footgolf or Oreo McFlurry. Ever wondered how this can apply to email? We did. And that’s how we came across our latest favorite marketing technique. Meet “Email Blogging”.

Blogging and email marketing are two of the most effective digital marketing strategies. Both are great ways to increase brand awareness, build a loyal customer base and, in the end, generate revenue. No matter who you’re targeting, loyal readers are always the ones that buy the most.

While a blog is the ideal tool to increase awareness, email marketing is the best choice when it comes to converting audiences into loyal customers. Researches show that companies doing email marketing get more attention, have a stronger relationship with their customers and sell more products than companies that neglect it. However, email marketing is not just about sending emails – it’s important to follow some best practices to provide a high quality experience. Beautiful designs, killer subject lines, smart calls-to-action… They all matter.

There’s a certain simplicity that comes with blogging, where content is truly king. There’s no other way around it. The value added that good content has to offer nurtures a loyal readership and positions the author as a true thought leader.

So, why not get the best out of both worlds? Want to discover the Oreo McFlurry of digital marketing? We’ve got you covered, just read on.

 

Better performance with Email Blogging

Email Blogging is a combination of email marketing and blogging – duh. It’s basically email with a strong focus on content that entertains and provides knowledge. But unlike your usual blogpost, this content is available to your subscribers only. The readers don’t leave their inboxes until they are ready to complete a purchase or explore your brand further, which makes it more appealing to those wary of clicking on your CTAs.

The philosophy behind it is just as simple: firstly, the email blogger provides a lot of high-quality content and then, after several emails, drives the audience to its own products. With this approach, the sender positions him or herself as a high-quality source of knowledge, and not as an unscrupulous seller whose only intention is to bombard contacts with a sneaky sales pitch.

Email Blogging is flexible and can be tailored to successfully target one’s individual goals and niche. The creative possibilities are endless. You could opt for a weekly journal entry, tempt them with longer pieces of content broken down into different emails or even go for free courses, like Noah Kagan does on his Summer of Marketing series below.

Emal course by Noah Kagan
 

Let’s get this blogging party started

You’ve seen the awesomeness, right? We knew you’d love it. Are you wondering when or how to give Email Blogging a try? Well, whether you are a freelancer, a well-established professional or a company, there’s always something you can gain from it.

Well-established professionals and Freelancers

If you are a freelancer or a new entrepreneur you might be desperate to get people to know you and your brand, to discover your services and to find your place in the industry. But even if you are already well known in your niche, Email Blogging can help you grow your contact list and help you position yourself as an expert in your niche with little extra effort. You can start off with a regular blog (there are great online resources out there to get you started – check out FirstSiteGuide’s “How To Start A Blog“), showcasing your expertize and the value your content adds, while encouraging people to sign up to your emails, where you’ll provide additional exclusive tips, advice or in-depth analysis.

Want to see it in action? Paul Jarvis is a well-established freelance designer, author and software developer from Victoria, British Columbia. He has written articles for Forbes, Newsweek, BuzzFeed, etc. In his series, The Sunday Dispatches, he discusses issues he comes across during his daily work. Over 22 000 people are already receiving his emails on a weekly basis.

Paul Jarvis

The Sunday Dispatches by Paul Jarvis

No time to create your own blog or not techie enough to build it? Why not try FirstSiteGuide’s feature and get your blog set up for you.

Companies and organizations

Similarly, small companies can also benefit from the brand awareness and thought leadership Email Blogging brings to the table. The challenge, however, is driving that sense of expertize from an individual to a whole organization. Not knowing who’s really behind the advice we are receiving might make it harder for companies to establish themselves as a knowledge base.

Email Blogging can help with brand awareness and brand loyalty. Customers are not likely to visit your blog regularly, they might even have a hard time remembering who you are and what it was you sold. But if you manage to engage them, be it with valuable content on your site or a great campaign, you don’t need them to remember you. You can remind them who you are on a weekly basis, when the content is delivered directly into your audience’s inbox. If the value your content offers lives up to the expectations, you’ll slowly find your way to your readers’ heart. Let’s face it: most people would rather get all the benefits of a 5KM run while sitting on the couch watching TV, than actually going out for a jog. Same thing happens with your content: we all want to know stuff, but we don’t always want to put in the effort.

When your are a bigger or more established company, brand awareness might not be a problem anymore, but you can still struggle creating that bond with your customers. Email Blogging can help you with that too. The content you send is accompanied by a certain exclusivity. People love feeling special, especially in the Internet. It will make them feel they are still important for you. Add a little bonus for your subscribers, by helping them get more out of your products or services. They will stick with you, instead of going to your competitor.

Need some ideas? But, of course. Food delivery companies can provide recipes featuring the food they deliver, online fashion stores can send fashion tips or analyze celebrities’ styles, software companies can give their subscribers advice on how to make the most of their product, colleges and universities can give learning tips…

Fashion tipps via email

Fashion tips from The Promdi Chic

 

As you can see, the possibilities are endless and the only limit is one’s own creativity. Excited? Let’s start crafting amazing content your subscribers really want to read.

 

What do you think about Email Blogging? Have your tried it? Tell us on Twitter by using the hashtags #EmailBlogging and #MailjetMarketing.  

 

What Happens When Your Sender Reputation Is Low?

Email marketers know a lot about emailing best practices: how to keep your contact list clean, why you shouldn’t purchase third party data, how to design emails that will land in the inbox… after all, deliverability is their job. But do you know why you do all of this? You should know that not following these unspoken rules and best practices might have an impact on your deliverability. But how? The answer is simple: because of your sender reputation.

Your reputation, the most precious thing in this harsh digital word

You have to cherish, nurture and protect your sender reputation. Because in the digital world, just like in this strange world that is real life, your actions have an impact on how others see you. Don’t let yourself think that your actions have zero consequences. On the contrary! Just like you wouldn’t casually scream to people instead of talking to them, nor would you cover the walls of your neighborhood with advertising posters for your company, you shouldn’t spam people and you should always follow email best practice. Your sender reputation is on the line.

So first, what is your sender reputation? Well, as the name indicates, it’s the reputation associated with your sender behavior. To be more precise, it’s about the reputation of your IP addresses and domain names. To help you know your reputation most email service providers (ESPs) have partnered with different tracking services, so you can check said reputation directly in your dashboard. If your ESP doesn’t offer this service, you can easily hop on SenderScore.org, ReputationAuthority or Senderbase.org (to name a few) to find out your score. These associations are well-known advocates in the fight against spam and are frequently used by ISPs, webmails and ESPs to have visibility on the value of a domain name or an IP address.

The reputation is calculated based on a number of parameters: your sending history, the number of spam complaints associated with your domain name, the number of spam traps your emails hit, the different authentication protocols (SPF, DKIM, DMARC…) you set, if your WHOIS is public and correctly filled, etc.

That’s a lot to take into account and it seems a bit of a bother to comply… how exactly will my sender reputation impact my campaigns?

I can’t believe you’re asking such an obvious question. It’s in the name of the concept itself: Sender Reputation! If your reputation is poor (in any domain of life, actually), your emails won’t land in the inboxes of your recipients.

Firstly, because the sender reputation is based on your sending behavior and on how you set your emailing strategy. If you don’t follow email best practice, you are using purchased contact lists or you use a webmail address as your sending address, the chances are your sender reputation will be low. Therefore, your emails won’t reach the inbox.

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Second, as said earlier, webmails, ISPs and ESPs are looking at your sender reputation. The worse case scenario is that it’s more likely that your emails won’t be processed by the email advocates. With this in mind, you’ll see a vicious circle forming: bad sender behavior leads to bad reputation; with a bad reputation, unless you take drastic action, the chances are your stats won’t improve, which will worsen your sender reputation… and you see the picture.

OK, I understand. What should I do to keep my sender reputation on top?

Well actually, all you have to do is simply follow the best practices of emailing: be sure that all your contacts have opted-in (or even better: double opted-in), clean your lists after you send a campaign, have the right protocols in place… These are all basic and simple actions that will greatly help you improve your sender reputation and in the end, your deliverability rating. You’ll find everything you need to know on this topic in our guide.

Now, what should you do if you (unfortunately) have a poor sender reputation? Well, you will need time and patience.

  • The first steps are related to the setting of your sender address. Make sure to be identified as a legitimate sender with a public WHOIS and with the SPF and DKIM protocols properly set.
  • Now, since your reputation is already low, you will need to thoroughly clean your lists. Remove all the inactive contacts (those who haven’t interacted with your emails for in the last 3 to 6 months) and send reengagement emails to your remaining contacts. Incentivizing them to keep receiving your emails or to unsubscribe. This way, you’re sure to only keep engaged contacts, who will be more willing to open, read and click your messages.
  • Then, start a new emailing strategy. It might take some time: you might expect ESPs to slow down your sending speed; you might not be able to send as many emails as you’d like at once. But it’s part of the game. This way, all the email advocates can check and be sure that your emails are legitimate.
  • Finally, you’ll also have to get in touch with the ISPs, webmails and associations who’ve blacklisted your DNS or IP to get it cleared. They might need evidence of your legitimacy and that you’re not a spammer. Good sending stats and improving results might help.

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As usual, it’s all about emailing with common sense and following best practice. Because, your sender reputation is one of the most valuable things you have as an email marketer.

Your sender reputation has been low but now you’ve improved it? Tell us how you faced the challenge on Twitter.