So you use email as part of your marketing mix, how well do you know the guidelines when it comes to email marketing? Yes, there are guidelines however unlike platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Instagram it is not so strictly policed.
However if you do happen to slip up you will notice it in your email deliverability, unhappy recipients and maybe a contact from a lawyer. As an email marketer you will probably know a few of these guides. Which is great and just like anything it is always good to have a quick refresh. So here we go, the 7 email marketing Guidelines to keep in mind (and to help keep you out of the Spam Filter).
1. Keep it Real: Use a real and proper email address.
Your “From,” “To,” “Reply-To,” and routing information – including the originating domain name and email address – must be accurate and identify the person or business who is sending the message. Not even the email filters like fake email addresses. Fake email address = straight to spam
2. Tell it as it is: Use proper subject lines that reflect your email.
Don’t use deceptive subject lines. The subject line must accurately reflect the content of the message. The machines may not pick up on this yet but your recipients definitely will. When it comes to email marketing once burnt, forever scarred. You will have lost them forever.
3. Don’t be sneaky: If your email is an ad then say it.
There is a lot of ways you can do this, but when it come down to it if your email is an advertisement then show it like it is, don’t try to hide it.
4. Location, Location, Location : Let your recipients know where you’re located.
Your message must include your valid physical postal address. This can be your current street address, a post office box, or a private mailbox you’ve registered with a commercial mail receiving agency established under Postal Service regulations. Having a physical address gives you some ‘street cred’ with the email spam filters and also your recipients. The know you are real which is a big plus!
5. Give them a choice : Always have an opt-out / unsubscribe button.
Your message must always include a clear and visible way that your recipient can opt out of future emails. Keep it simple and easy either by sending you back an email or through clicking on a link or button. Craft the notice in a way that’s easy for an ordinary person to recognize, read, and understand. In some countries (like the US) when sending out commercial emails it is mandatory to have an unsubscribe / opt-out link. We have put in place a safety check in all emails sent through Ungapped so you will never have to worry about this :).
6. Let them leave: Honor opt-out requests promptly.
This is pretty simple, if anyone wants to stop receiving your emails then make it so. When it comes down to the timings and legals there are some important points to keep in mind. Ungapped, like many email service providers handles this for you automatically.
Any opt-out mechanism you offer must be able to process opt-out requests for at least 30 days after you send your message. You must honor a recipient’s opt-out request within 10 business days. You can’t charge a fee, require the recipient to give you any personally identifying information beyond an email address, or make the recipient take any step other than sending a reply email or visiting a single page on an Internet website as a condition for honoring an opt-out request. Once people have told you they don’t want to receive more messages from you, you can’t sell or transfer their email addresses, even in the form of a mailing list. The only exception is that you may transfer the addresses to a company you’ve hired to help you comply with the CAN-SPAM Act.
7. Know what’s going on: Monitor what others are doing on your behalf.
If you hire another company to handle your email marketing, you can’t contract away your legal responsibility to comply with the law. Both the company whose product is promoted in the message and the company that actually sends the message may be held legally responsible. This varies from country to country, as a marketer though you should always keep on top of what is being sent out.
Each country has its own laws when it comes to email marketing however these main guidelines will help keep you and your email campaigns compliant. You can check out more info on the CAN-SPAM Act.