November 26, 2014

How to Keep Your Emails Out of Spam Folders This Holiday Season

With Black Friday and Cyber Monday fast approaching, consumers are going to be inundated with email blasts throughout the next month. Some of these holiday emails will be considered relevant and provide valuable information, while many will be considered spam and too salesy.

To reduce the number of “spammy” emails entering consumers’ inboxes, Microsoft has recently polished how Office 365 handles promotional emails— including newsletters, social updates and special sales—just in time for the holiday shopping season. Microsoft now has a “simple, intuitive control” to the Exchange Online Protection (EOP) security engine; this means that Office 365 administrators can fine-tune the treatment of these messages for their domain, allowing users to easily block more of these “bulk” emails.

EOP rates bulk messages on a scale of 1 to 9. The lower the rating, the less likely the message will be considered an annoyance to consumers. Criteria used to rate messages include whether recipients signed up for the mailings, whether the sender offers unsubscribe options and how many complaints the emails have generated.

“Bulk email can be a real nuisance for users. We hope that this feature will help you better manage the amount of bulk email your organization receives and look forward to continually improving our anti-spam service to meet your needs,” according to Microsoft official Shobhit Sahay.

So, how will your company ensure that their email marketing campaign does not end up in the spam folder this holiday season? Let’s take a look:

  • Pay attention to obvious words and phrases that will turn off consumers: Recipients will start to complain about your emails if the messages come off as too salesy. Steer clear of the following phrases in your subject lines: huge deals, store credit, holiday savings, free shipping, etc. Instead, your subject lines should include an engaging, original title that differentiates your business from the salesy competition.
  • Provide valuable content that a consumer will enjoy reading: Don’t stuff your emails with “50 percent off!!!” and promotions in ALL CAPS. As an alternative, curtail your excitement and offer educational information about the different products you’re pushing this holiday season. Discuss the benefits and advantages of using these types of products. Provide consumers with helpful information instead of constantly pushing holiday sales.

Legitimate messages that get snagged by spam filters can lead to big problems—including lost business, which you cannot afford during the busiest time of the year. For your email marketing campaign this holiday season, reach out to a content strategy vendor to polish those emails and ensure your messages will reach your target audience. Click here to learn how we can help you at Content Boost.

Edited by Brooke Neuman

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