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Meet Mailjet's deliverability pilot

In this post, we tell you about our interview with Udeme Ukutt, our deliverability director. He tells us about his job and how to improve deliverability.

Gods celebrating new product



Do you ever wonder who stands behind Mailjet? Mailjet serves over 16,000 global clients and all the work isn’t done by our robust cloud platform alone. We have a dedicated team of experts that maintain continuous compliance and improvement of Mailjet’s services, aligned with industry best practices. Every now and then, we take a moment to take a closer look at the folks who constantly strive to improve your email delivery. Today’s turn is in fact having his 1 year anniversary at Mailjet as we ushered in 2014, and we are happy to have him on board!

Udeme Ukutt, Deliverability Director

Udeme steers Mailjet’s Deliverability & Abuse Team operations with a special quest: ensure consistent aligned with day-by-day global deliverability best common practices. His team continuously handles multiple responsibilities around the clock, like:

  •    - 24 x 7 abuse desk ops across multiple continents to combat anomalous (spam & phish) activities & stop the bad guys

  •    - continuously analyze how legitimate, solicited good email get delivered to those who want it - successfully into their inbox folders.

Since deliverability is a core, complex and important topic, Udeme has one of the busiest jobs at Mailjet. Nevertheless, he is given a few moments to give some extra insights:

Maggie: You ADORE deliverability and love everything that comes with it. How did you find out this was your thing?

Udeme: Someone asked me one day, ‘do you love math? Love computers?’ I said, ‘Yes!’… and here I am, breathing deliverability compliance day in and day out. Over the years I’ve learnt & experienced delivery ops on both the sender and receiver sides of the ladder. Nevertheless, I strive to contribute positively even more!

The average Deliverability ‘peep’ analyzes A LOT of data 24/7, which made this career path a perfect match for me. Funny enough - I always loved math & statistics since I was a little kid.

Maggie: What is your typical day at Mailjet like?

Udeme: Every day has something exciting, something that calls for an extra cup of coffee. In fact, each day is unique like the other because we’re constantly progressing with industry trends. We’ve to do that because the industry and the average ISP/receiver consistently maintain their anti-spam filter algorithms, and in parallel we’ve to continually adapt and analyze.

Like many have said, deliverability is an ongoing mission that’s got no magic solution, no silver bullet! It’s an ever-changing task because we encounter new senders, new data, changing algorithms … daily!

Maggie: Part of your job is reputation management. What does that mean?

Udeme: Reputation management’s something with major impacts on deliverability. ISPs such Yahoo! & Gmail… down to Orange, etc observe the average sender’s reputation to determine ‘trustworthiness’.

If a spammer uses Mailjet to deliver bad email, this can harm Mailjet’s reputation - as well as the overall reputation of our senders. That’s the reason why its not only in our highest interest - but our senders as well - to establish, enforce and maintain the tightest antiabuse algorithms as possible to protect our reputation.

Maggie: How do you detect spammers?

Udeme: Basically we analyze all deployed emails real-time and search for unusual deliverability issues that may trigger off spam indicators. A negative indicator may be a high volume of bounced emails; or high complaints; or vice versa. Primarily, legitimate senders use stuff like properly authenticated mail, high quality solicited lists (ideally made up of confirmed opt-in contacts. Naturally, since all recipients on the list consented to receive emails from the sender, the bounce rate should be low.

Spammers usually send their emails to what’s classified as third-party data (purchased, rented, etc). Spammer activity is reflected in their sender’s email stats … high rates associated with bounces, spam, complaints, etc. In rare cases, it may happen that a legitimate sender encounters a deliverability issues too. If that’s the case, we would support a legitimate sender with expert advice on how to improve their reputation.

Maggie: How can senders improve their deliverability?

Udeme: To mention a few common ones that help receivers and ISPs to increase mail stream ‘trust’, spot-check these occasionally:

  • Ensure you (properly) implement authenticate email using SPF and DKIM. DMARC is a new technology that’s being recognized more and more, industry-wide.

  • Confirmed opt-in list acquisition practices are strongly recommended as opposed to a single opt-in mechanism.

  • Place focus on message design, content, structure - as well as frequency and relevance of your messages

  • My guess is that you wouldn’t want to fly with a jet plane that hasn’t had a security check either, would you? Or … you’d want to fill it up with proper fuel too, right?”

Maggie: Thank you for those helpful insights and your precious time, it’s great to have you on board! … and now let’s go back to conquering inboxes. :)

[ Posted Thu, 09 Jan 2014 20:30:00 ]

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