Remember when you didn't know any of the people emailing you? When spam flooded your inbox and you were helpless to stop it? Well it's not as much of a problem anymore thanks to the spam filters. Spam filters are sets of criteria set up by mail servers that check each email for the likelihood of being spam.
Now the problem becomes how can you get your emails past the Spam Filter? Dun Dun Dun Dun! In fact one out of six emails may be landing in a spam filter somewhere, unread and un-responded to. To avoid this sad result just follow the rules.
Rule #1 - Dress Your Email Like A Nesting Female Bird
No loud colors. No all-caps. No exclamation points! Do not use other punctuation signs more than once in a row. Do not use weird spacing or a lot of underlining or bolding.
Rule # 2 - Write Emails Like You Are Making Conversation at a Dinner Party
Some topics are simply not for polite emailing. You mustn’t speak of money, use multiple $'s, or make offers people can't refuse. Words of passion or conviction should be used sparingly. Viagra and related topics are also not for polite emailing. Also don't hog the conversation - keep your message short, long emails are considered a spam indicator.
Rule # 3 - Play Hard To Get
If you need to get people to your landing page to see the prices you couldn't mention before, be sure to do so with subtle invitations. Never use the phrase, CLICK HERE, or other action phrases frequently used on the web.
Rule #4 - Maintain Your Composure At All Times
Use only proper HTML coding in an email, no converted Microsoft word files allowed! And good spelling never hurts. Bad English … “will to let know your spammer for sure.”
Rule #5 - No Lying
Do not use ‘Re’ or ‘Fwd’ in the subject line if this isn't the case. Do not use other people's purchased email lists, or emails scraped from another site (this is illegal). If someone reports you as a spammer all your future emails WILL be suspect. Make sure your subject line matches your message, bait and switch will only get you switched off.
Rule #6 - Keep It Simple
Text versions of your message are best. Use a regular size normal typeface and keep images few and far between - no large graphical images or forms embedded within your content. If you need to get these items to your recipient or other executable file types, such as .exe, .zip, .swf and so on, have them go to another page or download site. We like WeTranfer.com or DropBox.
Rule #7 - Make Yourself Known
Include a proper ‘from’ address, eg. “John Q. Public <firstname.lastname@example.org>.” Unknown senders can be reported as spam. Include other ways to reach you like a phone number and mailing address. These are signals of validity in an email. Many states now require that you give people a way to unsubscribe. Show you know whom you are contacting. Use their name in the email. Use a date to show that the e-mail is current.
Rule #8 - Speak Only When Spoken To
Use the double opt-in method for things like newsletters and special offers and people will not mark you as spam. This is a sign-up method where the viewer clicks to receive the emails and then also confirms this a second time from an email sent to that account.
Rule #9 - Watch Your Reputation
ISP spam filters consider your past behavior when determining whether you are safe to go through. If you have been flagged before or even if someone else on your mail server has been flagged before, you may be marked as suspicious. And all these entities share information about who is and who is not a spammer. DNSstuff.com will tell you whether you are a blacklisted sender.
Rule#10 - Lead Them Not Astray
The types of links you provide in the content may disqualify you if they are deemed unsafe or excessive in comparison to the amount of text in the email.
Rule #11 - Get A Second Opinion
There are various services on the internet that will check your emails for spammy content and tell you what you need to change. Or get email sender accreditation from a third party so ISPs will know you are to be trusted.
Rule #12 - Wild Cards Out of Your Control
The following are things that may affect your future scores that you may have little control over. But being aware of them may help you create better emails and thus avoid this fate.
Does your email get bounced?
Do viewers flag you as spam?
Do they spend much time reading the email?
Do they get to the bottom of the email?
Where does your email get filed?
Does your email get forwarded?
Does your email get opened or not?
Do they enable the viewing of images?
Rule #13 - Partner With Your Recipients
Ask your subscribers to Whitelist your email address to help the filters see you're the good guy. Check with inactive subscribers if they still want to be on your list.
Rule#14 - Get On A Team
There are also Email Marketing companies that work hard to maintain their reputation with ISP Filters
and insure that your emails will be formatted properly.