Email Marketing : How to Avoid the Spam Filters

email Marketing -avoiding the spam filtersRecently I have picked up some interest in email marketing and also did a few blog posts on content strategies for email marketing and email marketing services . This is kind of a sequel to those two, trying to talk about another eternal problem in email marketing : avoiding the spam filter.

Avoiding the spam filter has always been a challenge for email marketers and while there has been certain known triggers that gets the spam filters on a overdrive, there’s a lot more to avoiding email spam.

One of the most well defined guidelines on this is the US CAN SPAM law. You can find the details here. While this is legally binding upon email marketers operating for a US company, there are some general email marketing best practices to avoid the spam filter that everyone can follow :

  1. Don’t use false / misleading email headers
  2. Identify the message as an advertisement, if it is so. You can simply use [ADV] on the subject line
  3. Include a valid postal address for the sender
  4. Make sure your Unsubscribe option is included in the mailer and is working perfectly.

While these are some basic principles that are easy to maintain, there is every chance that your emailer content can put you into the spam box. Most ISPs use a point based system that identifies trigger phrases commonly used by spammers. If an email goes over the points it is filtered out. Now the question is how do you know  if your email is about to trigger off the spam filters ?

A Tool to Avoid Spam Filters for Email Marketing

While knowing these terms helps to avoid spam, there might be some tools for the same. I love the one that StreamSend provides. I have been a big fan of StreamSend as an email marketing tool and the Analysis tool they offer has just increased my love for them. While the tool offers four very useful features, the two I love most are :

  1. It runs your email through 9 spam filters  for any sign of spam triggering content, helping you avoid the spam box and increase your inbox rate.
  2. It also allows your to preview your email in 30 different email clients in various modes ( images on/off, preview pane etc), ensuring your email looks exactly the way you want them to be.

I feel these two features address two of the most dreaded challenges in email marketing and to have these tools integrated right into the email marketing solution you are using makes it a lot more easier. I would strongly recommend trying out Stream Send to anyone into email marketing not just for the awesome interface and analytics they provide but more so for these two amazing features that can go a long way in ensuring a higher ROI for your email marketing campaign.

If  you don’t have a tool like this and are depending on your manual judgement to avoid the spam filters for your email, here are few more common points to avoid :

  1. A low ratio of text to image in your HTML
  2. HTML and Text parts are different
  3. Subject line in all caps
  4. Use of “Dear” in address – “Dear ” – No he isn’t so dear to you !
  5. “You registered with a partner” – having this in your text tells the spam filters your list is most likely not permission based

Words triggering spam are too numerous to put in this post, instead I have included this PDF with a list of those email marketing spam triggers that you should avoid like Plague if you want your email to hit the inbox.

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Check out the About SRC Page for more details about Saptarshi Roy Chaudhury.

1 Comment to “Email Marketing : How to Avoid the Spam Filters”

  1. Ahman Adam says:

    It’s truly an honor to be subjected to thoughtful and unbiased writing like this. The writer is clearly knowledgeable and balanced in my humble opinion.

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