GDPR is not the only new regulation on the minds of Marketers.
In March 2018, Mailjet commissioned a new piece of research conducted by Morar Consulting to understand the effect that ePrivacy will have on marketing strategies and ROI following it’s implementation. The professional survey was taken by 400 marketers and marketing decision makers from both B2B and B2C companies across the UK and France.
The research looks at what channels marketers are currently using to reach their customers, how they feel ePrivacy will affect their business, what changes they will make following ePrivacy and more.
Download the full research report and start preparing for the effects ePrivacy will have on your business.
The aim of this post, however, is to help you understand why you should always include an unsubscribe link in your emails. Although it’s always painful to see people unsubscribing from your contact list, it is more beneficial than you may think. If you’re thinking we’ve gone completely crazy, read on and you’ll understand why we advocate this so much.
Contact lists: is more always better?
Contact lists are something we – as people who send emails – cherish very much. Our businesses often depend crucially on the communications we send out to our subscribers. So, we never want to lose contacts. Although it’s difficult, you always need to keep in mind that subscribers who don’t engage with your content are not valuable to you. What you want instead, is to have a list of contacts that actually open and read your emails, and hopefully that click on and share some of the content too. We recently explained what these email statistics mean for you and how you can improve them to enhance engagement.
Sidekick’s content team keeps its email list clean in a very effective way, notifying subscribers so that they can stay on the list, if they wish; otherwise they will be unsubscribed. This is an example of very good practice.
One way to ensure that your list is clean and that people actually want to receive your communications is to allow them to unsubscribe from your email list. There is absolutely no reason to force someone to stay in your contact list, if they don’t want to receive your offers and communications. It won’t benefit your business in any way, in fact it can cost you business.
But this is probably not enough to convince you… You want to know more, right? Until now you probably thought many contacts = big contact list = good. But as it is true for many other things, quantity doesn’t equal quality.
Reasons to include an unsubscribe link in your emails
It’s not merely about having a clean list – including an unsubscribe link in your emails has many other benefits.
Avoid customer frustration
We’ve all been there. Without even realising we’ve given consent to receive newsletters from a website or a brand, we start receiving emails that we are not particularly interested in. Hmm… annoying. Especially when your inbox is full of promotional emails that – let’s be frank – you don’t care about.
Why would you put anybody else through this? You know yourself how frustrating it is. Especially if you open a newsletter hoping to find an unsubscribe link… but it’s not there! It’s important to be understanding of people’s needs and preferences and allow them to opt out of your email list, if they wish to do so. In fact, this improves the whole email marketing experience, to make sure that unlike other social channels, the inbox is for content you specifically want to see.
Groupon gives unsubscribing from their Daily Groupon list a fun twist.
If you’re sending a confirmation email to let your users know they are no longer part of your mailing list, you can use this opportunity to gain more information about why they are unsubscribing (and maybe suggest an alternative newsletter of yours they could find more interesting!). This feedback can be really helpful, as you might learn why people don’t find your newsletter’s content valuable anymore or whether they think your email communications are sent out too often, all of which can inform how you adjust your strategy to best meet your audience’s needs.
Beta List asks its subscribers to take a few minutes to give some feedback on their email communications, so that they can understand how to do a better job.
End up in the inbox, not in spam
There is no other way to say it – fundamentally, including an unsubscribe link in your emails gives you more chances to end up in the inbox rather than in the spam folder. This is also because if people don’t want to receive your newsletters and they find no unsubscribe link when they look for it, they will probably flag your email as spam.
Every country has their own law on the inclusion of an unsubscribe link, as this is mandatory in anti-spam legislation.
You should know by now how detrimental it’s for your reputation to have emails that end up in the spam folder. Your spam complaints should always be kept to a minimum. At Mailjet, the acceptable threshold of spam less or equal to 0.08%. If your spam rate is higher than the threshold your account can be suspended or, in some cases, even terminated.
Be GDPR compliant
Next month GDPR will come into effect. At this stage, you can’t really afford not to be compliant anymore. Non-compliance puts you at risk of fines up to €20 million or 4% of annual global turnover, whichever is greater.
According to article 17 of GDPR, ‘Right to erasure’ or ‘Right to be forgotten’, data subjects have the right to request their data to be erased. Data controllers have the obligation of deleting such data when it’s no longer necessary for the purposes for which it was collected, or the data subjects withdraw consent for it to be collected and used.
For a contact to request to unsubscribe from a list is fully within his/her rights as data subject. And your duty as data controller is to delete such data. It always needs to be kept in mind that with GDPR coming into effect on May 25th, consent cannot be something that you obtain once and that’s it. The new regulation allows people to choose for themselves and to protect their personal data at any given time, should they change their mind.
How we help you
At Mailjet – as a GDPR compliant solution -, we ensure our clients are on the right side of the law by including an unsubscribe link in all of the emails created with our drag-and-drop editor, Passport, which cannot be removed, but can be customized to fit one’s brand. As stated in our Sending Policy: “All marketing campaigns must include a clear and concise link for recipients to easily opt-out of receiving future communication. The link must be easy for anyone to recognize, read, and understand.”
All of our subscribers are free to unsubscribe from our email list at any time.
We hope that by now you understand how important including an unsubscribe link is for your email marketing practices. Always remember that consent, unlike diamonds, is not forever.
Have you cleaned your contact list recently? Have you seen an impact on your metrics? Or maybe you have been able to improve your emailing strategy based on feedback you got from unhappy readers? Tell us all about it on Twitter.
Text messaging is one of the most impactful channels for direct communication. Between 2016 and 2020, the UK will see a 50% increase in users opting into SMS communications, and in fact 64% of Americans would like to see businesses use SMS more according to InstaGiv. SMS allows businesses to have a powerful personalized exchange with their target audience in an easy and efficient way.
What other channel is as effective when it comes to building strong customer relationships, and reaching them at the right time? You guessed it: email. If you were already in love with the power of your transactional emails, imagine what you can do if you add… Transactional SMS.
Convinced? Get ready to take advantage of it right now. 😏
A bottomless pit of opportunities
Here are three ideas to power your transactional messages with SMS:
Easily implement 2-factor authentication and verify your users by sending a code via SMS. They will be able to log in with their chosen password, and also have an extra layer of security.
For example, when you manage payment data, customers will feel much more secure receiving a six-digit code for authentication. They can then trust you much more to manage their overall payment experience.
2. Useful notifications
In a world where customers are bombarded by ads, it’s important to stand out. Alert your customers of critical information via SMS when they need it. For example, low balance on a banking account, upcoming delivery, delayed flight… Send notifications that your clients need, and make sure they receive them.
Combine these with transactional emails that offer all the extra information that might not fit in an SMS so your users receive that instant alert and also know where to find the full details, whenever they need them.
Sending a confirmation SMS, like a pending appointment or purchase notification, in addition to your transactional email will stand out immediately, preventing customer dissatisfaction. Personalize and schedule your messages to be in line with your brand and customer engagement.
The good news is: it’s easy to send transactional SMS
Ready to start a 2-factor authentication, send notifications and confirmations to your customers via SMS? Well, guess what? Mailjet is launching a Transactional SMS solution! Cue applause.
Going back to our roots, where Mailjet first started as a transactional email service (something we are now leaders in), we are bringing this same expertise to transactional SMS. Our existing robust infrastructure allows us to send millions of emails per hour, with no latencies. Naturally, as SMS is poised to be a key part of a brand’s marketing mix, our next step was to bring transactional SMS to our customers with the same standards of our email service, at a very competitive price, and ensuring the best deliverability across 54 countries.
Now, you know. SMS is here to take your transactional emails even further. Really, can you name a more iconic duo?
And if you’re wondering, “why now?” it’s because we’ve just changed our infrastructure in a big way that’s going to allow you to send emails faster and more reliably.
An Email Platform That Scales
Any online product needs storage to function. For Mailjet, this meant starting on dedicated servers: physical servers rented and exclusively used by Mailjet. Dedicated servers fit well with our original needs, but now not only are we growing, but our customers and their email campaigns are as well. In fact, together we now send billions of emails every month. We needed a platform that would scale with you.
Challenges Of A Dedicated Server in the Email Industry
Every company has their own “magic time” to send their marketing emails. Transactional emails also tend to peak during different times of the day or the week (for example, Monday and Friday are peak times when people book airline tickets). What this boils down to is HUGE fluctuations in email volume being sent at any time. Often up to 20x higher at peak periods.
The challenge was to make sure your emails were processed and sent lightning fast, despite periods of high demand, we (and you) had to invest in the highest level of computing power even when we didn’t need it. It’s like paying for electricity when you aren’t even using it – it didn’t make sense. Which is why, come 2016, with neither yours or our growth slowing down, we decided to make a change.
What Are The Benefits Of Google Cloud Platform For You?
There are many differences between using dedicated servers versus a public cloud like Google Cloud Platform, but the biggest one is that we no longer were confined to a fixed number of servers. In fact, we now have the ability to use as many, or as little, of Google Cloud Platform’s servers in an instant, ensuring your email campaigns are smoother to build and faster to send. The advantages were huge for everyone using Mailjet.
Mailjet and Google Cloud Platform also already knew each other really well. In fact, we’re the only European ESP accredited by Google to send bulk emails through Google App Engine and Google Compute Engine.
Ultimately, the benefits below are how Google Cloud Platform will help meet your needs both now, and especially as you grow:
With Google Cloud Platform (GCP), Mailjet now has access to computing power that is extremely flexible, allowing it to process up to 20x more volume at a given moment. This ensures that you can send campaigns in high volumes, and at peak times, and have them arrive in the inbox instantly.
More Reliable Platform
Mailjet is now powered at any given moment by the server we choose within the GCP network. If there is ever a problem with a server or multiple servers, we can switch them in an instant. The same reliability you have come to expect from all Google tools is now powering Mailjet.
Flexible Server Location
Many of our clients care very much about where their data is being processed. Thanks to GCP’s wide range of data centers, Mailjet now has the flexibility to choose from a variety of their data processing locations.
Faster Sending Speed
Mailjet can now send 6M emails in one hour, partially thanks to our switch to GCP.
Highest Levels of Data Security
Like Mailjet, Google Cloud Platform is ISO 27001 certified, the international standard for best practices of information security processes. What does this mean? You can continue to count on the highest levels of Data Security for your email data.
We hope you’re as excited as we are about how Google Cloud Platform will transform the speed, reliability, and flexibility of your email campaigns. Please let us know if you have any questions!
To learn more about our partnership with Google Cloud Platform, check out the case study on Google Cloud here.
Well, fellow API enthusiasts, we just launched something new that should get your attention. Something that pairs perfectly with email. Something that opens up new doors for an improved customer relationship. Something that we, as a transactional solution leader, needed to bring: Short Text Messaging!
Commonly known by the sweet name SMS, it’s one of the most efficient channels of communication that can boost your contact engagement!
As an API wizard, there are two main factors that you usually consider: how useful is this new integration, and how easy is it to implement? We take both these factors into account when developing API solutions, and so after months of hard work, here comes the newest one – our SMS API. This is a feature for those who love simple and effective APIs, allowing you to send SMS all around the world in just 5 lines of code!
Text messaging is one of the most impactful channels for direct communication. According to the Mobilesquared report, 90% of SMS are opened and read within 3 minutes after reception, and 72% of users are interested in receiving transactional SMS.
Given these figures, SMS sending presents a huge opportunity for businesses to engage with their clients.
For instance, you may want to increase security by enabling two-factor authentication for your users, send them useful notifications to increase customer engagement, or display payment confirmations on their phones to verify successful transactions. All of the above benefit from instant sending and a quick way of viewing the messages – and what is quicker than checking your phone to see the SMS you just received?
Token authentication is a different method from the one used for emails, but just as easy. Simply create your token in the front-end, then use the token value in the Authorization header of your payload. For security purposes we don’t keep the token values – once you create it, you need to copy it locally in order to use it.
Time for some code, don’t you think?
We’ve talked enough about the benefits of sending transactional SMS – it’s time to see how it’s done, and what else is possible with Mailjet’s SMS API!
Send your SMS
Sending an SMS message is done with a simple HTTP call on the /sms-send endpoint. The payload consists of a JSON body with 3 properties – To (recipient’s phone number), From (customizable sender ID) and Text (the message content).
Nothing to it, right?
Detailed Error and Success Payloads
In order to help you quickly find sending issues, we implemented strict checks on your input payload. This means you’ll get synchronous feedback on what went wrong, scaling down your debugging time. See the below example of an error payload:
The success reporting is also quite detailed, providing information about, among other things, the message sender and recipient, Status and Cost.
What about Statistics?
You can easily retrieve lists of SMS messages with an HTTP call on the /sms endpoint. You can filter by message delivery status, recipient’s phone number, time period etc.
The response will include a list of messages matching the conditions you have set with the filter values, starting from the most recently created one.
In case you only need the count of the messages, use the /sms/count endpoint instead, and the response will show the number of messages matching your filter settings.
See our dedicated SMS API Guide to learn how to use its capabilities. And, of course, take a look at the SMS API Reference or detailed information on the endpoints, properties and available filters.
Glad you asked. Sending transactional messages is just the first step into the SMS world and the beginning of a long series of awesome developments for Mailjet’s API users. Here’s what is on the agenda for the next few months:
Beyond Transactional: Additional features to the V1 will allow you to book your own short code for sending SMS and MMS, as well as enhanced tracking and statistics.
Marketing campaigns: By building bridges between emails and SMS to manage your contacts or your marketing campaigns, you will be able to engage your customers in a new yet more accurate multichannel experience.
Conversational Messaging: 2-way SMS or the possibility to retrieve responses to any SMS you send with us will establish the bedrock for any automated marketing, chat apps or bots.