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8 entries from October 2005

Silverpop's 2005 Broken Links Study Reveals Alarming Trends

The Silverpop "2005 Broken Link Study" reveals alarming trends in the prevalence of broken imagery and links in email marketing campaigns from some of the best-known brands in the world.

The report says that four out of 10 emails contain missing graphics and/or indecipherable messages. Gmail, Microsoft Outlook 2003 and AOL 9.0  failed to display images in more than half of messages received.

Download the report here: http://www.silverpop.com/downloads/BrokenLink_Study.pdf

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Four reasons your e-mails aren't being delivered

E-mail technology company Return Path this week unveiled its latest deliverability study. The good news is overall deliverability improved slightly (albeit only 1%) since the last study, six months ago. However, with more than one out of five e-mails still getting bumped to the spam folder-or even worse, not getting delivered at all-there's still plenty of work to be done, said George Bilbrey, Return Path's GM-delivery assurance solutions.

"While we know that b-to-c mailers are having more of a problem, deliverability is still a significant problem for b-to-b marketers, too."

Bilbrey pointed to four major reasons that e-mails don't get through, along with simple fixes.

Reason No.1: You're sending too much mail.
Reason No.2: You haven't checked your list lately.
Reason No.3: Your infrastructure isn't set up right.
Reason No.4: Your content looks like spam.

Read the full article here: http://www.btobonline.com/article.cms?articleId=25792

Source: BtoBOnline

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Email Marketing Planning & Strategy: Elements To Consider

This weeks' issue of MediaPosts's Email Insider features an article called "It's Better When You Plan" by Melinda Krueger. In this article she talks about the elements that you need to consider when developing your plans for the next year.

These are her recommendations:

  • 2005 Review--Evaluate your e-mails over the past year, individually and as a group. What worked and what didn't? What did you learn from testing and analysis of your response data? What trends do you see when you compare last year with previous years? How does your program compare with those of your competitors? What do the answers to these questions lead you to recommend or try next year?
  • Industry Average Comparison--Everyone will tell you that you shouldn't concern yourself with incompatible industries and campaigns, and they'll issue dire warnings about differing methods of data collection. Still, every client or manager wants something to compare their program to. Whatever programs you use for this purpose, take care to compare apples to apples.
  • Industry Trends and Best Practices--The great thing about e-mail marketing information is that it's so easy to find. Every E-mail Service Provider and most interactive marketing agencies have e-mail intelligence, frequently in the form of white papers, on their Web sites. Condensing all the information available into an overview that's relevant to your business is a useful exercise for any e-mail practitioner. Attending an industry conference, like the recent OMMA East, is also a great way to contemplate your program away from the distractions of the office.
  • 2006 Goals--This is one element of your plan that you don't have to develop. Ask your clients or manager to define their top three goals for the e-mail program, preferably in the context of the company's overall goals.
  • 2006 Planning--Having reviewed, compared, defined and contemplated, you're now ready to make big plans for next year. Start by identifying a few key customer segments, and then develop ideas to attract, delight or win them back. Consider process issues that have wasted time and frustrated your team.

Read the whole article here.

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Change of email service

For those of you that have subscribed to receive an email notification each time I've posted something on my blog, I would like to let you know that I've switched to a new service called Feedblitz. You don't need to do anything to convert your subscription over.  Just be aware that the emails will now be coming from a different source.

Thanks, and let me know if you have any questions or comments.

Tamara

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DMA 2005 Postal & E-mail Marketing Report

In this report you will find industry benchmarks, projections, and insights to help you determine the most profitable marketing mix:

  • mailing patterns (i.e., mailing quantity, frequency, peak mailing time, etc.)
  • house vs. outside lists
  • response rates
  • use of alternative media distribution options
  • list rental and exchange practices
  • database strategies and uses
  • cross-selling and up-selling strategies
  • customer service communications

And it compares both postal mail and e-mail in both B-to-B and B-to-C spaces with regards to:

  • volume
  • frequency
  • marketing strategy
  • customer retention
  • traffic, lead, and order generation

Member Price: $295
Non Member Price: $495

More info here.

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Using forms in HTML emails

Sometimes it can be very handy to include a HTML form in an email campaign. Whether it's a quick customer survey or a subscribe form for another list, they can be a good way to interact with a recipient right there in their email client.

While they can be useful, there are a number of precautions you need to consider before using them.

Hotmail is a no go
Right off the bat, Hotmail will not allow you to include working forms in an email. Worse still, they actually display the form, but remove bits of code required to make it work. By stripping all values from your <form> tag and removing the name values of all form elements, they render your form useless. Your Hotmail recipients can still complete the form, but when they hit the submit button, nothing happens. This is probably worse than the form not displaying in the first place.

Continue reading "Using forms in HTML emails" »

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DM News' E-Mail Marketing Guide

DM News' Essential Guide to E-Mail Marketing will be available in the Oct. 17 issue of DM News. The guide is a 56-page special edition offering valuable how-to tips, best practices, case studies and research.

Its soup-to-nuts approach targets both beginners as well as experts. A Q&A with JupiterResearch's David Daniels is a must-read for its cogent analysis of the current state of e-mail marketing. Of equal interest are the exclusive case studies on Kettle Foods, Kodak, E-Loan, Hobby Lobby, Delta Air Lines, Nine West and Fossil.

Articles from the guide also will appear on www.dmnews.com throughout the next few weeks.

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Hotmail & Gmail Filter Out More Permission Emails

Delivery rates for permission-based emails rose for the third straight quarter, MSN's Hotmail and Google's Gmail filtered out more legitimate emails, writes DM News, citing a new study from Lyris Technologies. Hotmail's rate of "false positive filtering" increased from 5.6 percent in 2Q05 to 9.4 percent in the third quarter, and Gmail's from 4.1 percent to 7.17 percent, according to Lyris's quarterly Email Deliverability report, provided exclusively to DM News.

In Hotmail's case, the issue may be its second-quarter introduction of Sender ID, which sends emails for which the sender cannot be verified to customers' junk boxes; in Gmail's case, the issue may be that it is new to the arena and is still finding its footing, according to a Lyris spokesperson.

Lyris found that overall inbox delivery rates are improving: 89 percent of opt-in emails were delivered by U.S. ISPs, up 4 percentage points from the second quarter. ISPs with the best delivery rates included PeoplePC, Mailblocks, Gmail, Yahoo, SBC Global and RoadRunner.

Read the full story here.

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