Even if “experts” regularly predict the end of email, it is more vital than ever and an important component of the marketing mix. Unfortunately, email marketing is sometimes treated superficially by marketers, data protection and security are not optimal, and this affects the deliverability of emails as well as the reputation of the company…
From May 2018, very severe penalties can be imposed for breaching the new European Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Authorized Senders Alliance, a joint venture of the German e-commerce association ecoe. V. (Verband der Internetwirtschafft) and the German Dialogmarketing Verband (deutscher Dialogmarketing Verband) offer ten tips for businesses so they can avoid pitfalls and follow the rules while running successful email campaigns.
Double subscription required
According to the new GDPR, senders of bulk email messages must always demonstrate in every instance that they have the recipient’s consent before sending an email. Such consent shall be voluntary, active, and express, and shall be made separately for each concrete case. In the case of a Double-Opt-In (DOI) exercise, a recipient who wants to subscribe to a newsletter must confirm their consent again by clicking on a link in a confirmation email. In this way, active consent is obtained from the recipient and the rules are respected. For senders of commercial mail, DOI will be inevitable. They must use and document this practice so that they can establish consent when in doubt.
You are responsible
As a business, you must ensure that you meet GDPR guidelines before sending your emails, as you will be liable in the event of a breach. You are not solely responsible for this, but your email service provider is also responsible, but you must also comply with the GDPR. So think carefully about who you go to for your email services.
Commitment to transparency
The collection of personal data is linked to the obligation to inform the data subject. You are therefore obligated to inform everyone who subscribes to a newsletter about the processing of the data collected (when, where and by whom).
Quality over quantity
According to a recent study, only a quarter of sent emails are opened, which is not surprising given that more than 20,000 emails are generated every second (statistics in Germany). So that your emails never end up shutting them up in the trash again, you have to do more than just hit the send key. Craft your sales emails in a way that can spark interest at first sight and recipients will be interested in continuing to read them.
Send in time
Provide your customers with the information they need, when they need it. Choose your target groups wherever they are during the Customer Journey. Use commercial emails so that this “journey” ends where you want it: your product.
clean mailing list
If you want to spread your message as widely as possible, be sure to keep your mailing list clean. Sending unsolicited emails damages your good reputation and you risk severe penalties. The following tips help you keep your slate “clean”.
Naturally, you want as many people as possible to sign up for and read your newsletter. But don’t make the unsubscribe procedure too difficult. The subscriber, who cannot unsubscribe quickly and simply, gets annoyed quickly and your emails will end up in the spam box just as quickly.
Make the unsubscribe process as simple as possible. Use the List Unsubscribe title as requested by the CSA for some time in its acceptance criteria. Use the new RFC 8058 (One Click – Unsubscribe) protocol so that the recipient can unsubscribe with one click. At the same time, this prevents subscribers from unintentionally canceling their subscription, for example through anti-spam programs. But make sure that the header of the unsubscribe list is part of the DKIM signature. This is a cryptographic authentication method that many service providers use to find out if a message is from an authorized system to prevent spammers from impersonating legitimate entities).
An essential aspect of a clean mailing list also relates to the way you manage bounce emails (bounce processing). Immediately get rid of persistent bounces, i.e. incorrect or missing addresses or domains, from the mailing list. Also in this case, the Double-Opt-In rule is applied to prevent emails from being re-sent due to wrong or non-existent addresses.
For some companies, the ability to deliver email does not play a major role. Make sure your address portfolio is always up to date and well taken care of and you won’t end up in a blacklist. It will damage your good reputation.
Last tip: be honest!
Honesty and transparency play an essential role in email marketing. Treat recipients as you would like to be treated and be sure to maintain a good reputation. Thus, your customers will trust you, your Internet Service Providers (ISPs) will send your emails and you will have nothing to fear from the law.
The Certified Senders Alliance (CSA) is a joint project of the German e-commerce association eco. EV (Verband der Internetwirtschafft) and Deutscher Dialogmarketing Verband. CSA whitelisted companies are not scanned by spam filters of the largest German and international service providers such as Yahoo, GMX, freenet, web.de and also AOL and their messages are delivered directly. Those who meet the CSA’s eligibility criteria are assured that they are on the right side of the law and are trusted by their ISPs.
The above points will be among the topics discussed at the CSA Summit to be held from 18-20 April in Frankfurt.
To learn more about the summit, go to https://summit.certified-senders.eu/
About the author:
Julia Jansen Holdyk, the new director of the Canadian Space Agency
Julia Janßen-Holldiek runs the operational sector of the CSA (Certified Senders Alliance) for which she has already worked for 4 years as Director of Business Development and ISP Relations. Prior to working for the CSA, she was the Director of Sales and Marketing for an international IT company.
“Thanks to our high standards and our CSA certification, we have improved email quality and assured the safety and quality of our certified senders,” she explains. CSA works closely with postal service providers, Internet service providers, and marketing experts.
eco – Verband der Internetwirtschaft e. V., Lichtstr. 43 S, 50825 Cologne
Like. +49 221/70 00 48 – 0, Email: [email protected], Web: www.eco.de
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Thomas Muller, Tel. +49 221/7000 48-260, Email: [email protected]
French: MartaPogliani, Tel. +49 241 / 88970-575, email: [email protected]