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Don’t use your business email address for bulk email marketing!

One day, in a different role, a somewhat pious friend and client came to me with a problem. Her emails from her personal account were no longer being delivered.

After some head scratching and asking a lot of questions it became apparent that she had a rather large prayer group, several hundred people. She had been emailing them in bulk with all their addresses in the BCC field and, as a consequence of either the number of emails sent to BCC, emails bouncing, or being reported as spam, her email address had been blacklisted. She’d become a spammer!

The moral of the story is, while it is technically possible to bulk send from your personal email account, it’s not advisable, the workarounds, like sending in small batches and delayed intervals, are cumbersome, onerous, and problematic.

At WebFoundations we use GSuite as our business email system. It’s robust, powerful, and reliable infrastructure. It runs without issue and is reasonably priced. We would never consider using it for bulk email sends. Here’s why…

You’re breaking the law.

The Spam Act 2003 sets out your responsibilities under Australian law in regards to marketing emails. Familiarise yourself with it, it applies to bulk email sends ( aka. Marketing ).

Amongst the many requirements of this law you must provide an easy way to unsubscribe or opt-out of emails. If you’re sending emails directly from your personal email account ( including from systems like GSuite and Office 365 ) this will not include an easy, one click, option to do that, which could get you in trouble.

Your emails are going to spam.

Look, no matter how well intentioned you are, perhaps you’re just trying to be efficient sending a ‘personal’ email to hundreds of people at once, or you’re naive to the requirements of email marketing, or don’t even think you’re marketing at all ( you are ), the ISP’s, in their attempts to reduce spam, have filters in place that, regardless of your intention, or belief that you have permission, will recognise certain patterns, patterns that have been used and abused by thousands of spammers before you, and they will limit, filter, block, mark as spam, and blacklist accordingly. You don’t want that!

Your emails aren’t displaying properly.

This applies to HTML email, as opposed to plain text.

While we enjoy a high level of Browser consistency on the internet the same can’t be said for email clients. In fact the situation is the exact opposite. Getting your HTML email to render consistently across a myriad email clients is highly technical and a subject in its own right.

It’s quite accurate to say that an HTML email you create in your personal email client will look awful in any other. Not a good look.

You can’t manage your list or track your progress.

Email list management is critical to successful email marketing. Tracking open rates lets you know if your message is getting through. Tracking bounce rates helps ensure you avoid spam filters by keeping your list current. You don’t get this kind of analytics from your personal / business email system.

So what do we do?

In short, if you are serious about email marketing, you should use a purpose built email marketing platform or Email Service Provider ( ESP ). Here we use our Customer Relationship Management system Agile CRM which has a built in email marketing module that meets the legal requirements. We’re also looking at ConvertKit as another option.

Many of our clients use, and we recommend MailChimp. There are plenty of options.

If you’d like help or advice with your email marketing setup please contact us and arrange a consultation.

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