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Thursday, October 14, 2010

Tips For E-Mail Newsletters

About a month ago I published a tip talking about the creation of e-mail newsletters. In short, they are very similar to Web pages in almost every way. There are a few differences and some of those differences is to help make sure the message doesn't get eaten by spam filters. After I published the initial post, I was contacted by someone at Topica who gave me some tips to help make sure messages make it to their recipients. I'd like to share those with you.

In the subject line of the message, you shouldn't have multiple characters in a row. This isn't a really bad one, but something to keep in mind. We've traditionally used two dashes in our subject line and that will change in our next newsletter.

Since the spammers love to promote a discount on their fake products, anything that talks about a discounted product raises some red flags. The word free is pretty bad as well.

I'll include the next two verbatim as they are very important.
  • First, most email clients do not want to see or tags. In fact this can make your emails appear 'spammy' to the filter. The same goes for an extrenous tags, hence why WYSIWG editors - especially the MS ones - can be a problem.
  • Additionally, CSS support and rendering varies wildly across ISP's and mail clients. The safest approach to take, if you do want to use CSS, is to only use inline CSS and only for styling attributes (color, font size, etc). All layout should be done in tables.
Hopefully this information will allow you to create a great newsletter that actually makes it to the intended recipients.



Blogger RoyReed said...

If you want to send mass mailings as formatted emails you could do worse than use Campaign Monitor. Their templates are pretty much bullet-proof. It's not expensive either at $0.01 per email sent. You get great tracking and stats as well.

9:16 AM  

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