I recently participated in the EEC’s 2015 Email Evolution Conference. The event closed strongly with a keynote panel session that featured email abuse and postmaster representatives from Google, Microsoft, Comcast and AOL (ISPs). They provided marketers with important insights into email deliverability that can affect the success of their efforts.
For instance, all the panelists stated that they receive billions of email messages sent to their networks each day. ISPs reject about 95% of all incoming mail as SPAM. Only 5% of all email they receive is deemed good mail and is delivered to their users. This includes marketing messages that their customers want to see.
ISPs bear the financial and logistical burden of sorting through this deluge of incoming email. All four ISPs take somewhat similar, yet varied approaches to fighting spam. However, they all have the same end goal: ensure their users only receive what they want delivered.
The panelists were able to share some important factors marketers can consider to improve their email deliverability. These ISPs use a blended model and weigh specific metrics on each level, both globally and locally. Not every user is the same, nor is each inbox, so they try to personalize their delivery based on the uniqueness of their users. Yet the following list of metrics still helps guide whether mail makes it into their inbox or not.
Super Strong Engagement Metric – How ISPs determine great mail
Users open the messages they receive.
Users reply to the messages they receive.
Users move messages from their junk folder to their inbox. This is a powerful signal that they want these messages delivered.
Strong Engagement Metric – How ISPs determine good mail
Messages are moved to folders or are filed.
Users add senders to an address book. This usually indicates they want to receive more from the sender.
Bad/Poor Engagement Metric – How ISPs filter out unwanted mail
Users delete messages without ever opening them.
Users move messages to their junk folder or flag as spam.
Lastly, Google provided additional insight and tips to marketers – what they call the “5 r’s.” Google’s marketing team follows this advice internally and were happy to share it with the EEC audience:
- Right acquisition – Ensure you have permission. Use the right opt-in to gain users’ permission and follow best practices.
- Right engagement – Understand your users. Target and send what they want to see. Don’t send the same thing to your entire list.
- Right measurement – Make sure you are tracking your engagement metrics in a meaningful way. See what is working and what isn’t.
- Right adjustment – Properly ramping up and ramping down as well as making adjustments on the fly based on your analytics and engagement.
- Right opt-out – Ensure your opt out is visible, easy to use and easy to unsubscribe.
ISPs’ priority is to have happy customers. This means that they will do their best to ensure only wanted messages get through to their inboxes. If you follow their recommendations, as well as those outlined in Sugar Market’s, becoming Sugar Market’s, B2Best Practices Guide: Email Deliverability, you can help ensure your marketing messages reach your desired audience.
Click here to learn more about how Sugar Market’s marketing automation platform can help you improve email deliverability.