Business / IT News and Views From the Trenches Ok, email isn’t dead quite yet but the times sent as only HTML. This means it way it is being overtaken by spam comes with graphics, fonts, and colors. leaves us with the possibility your The alternative message format is plain email isn’t being read. You can great- text -- boring and plain. If you must send ly increase the chances of your mes- HTML emails, I strongly recommend sage being read if you follow some including a plain text option as well. simple guidelines when sending email. This is configurable in all major email Today nearly every office is us- clients including Outlook. The reason ing some sort of spam filtering. Most for this is not only to avoid the spam mornings when I first check my email filters but also because there are many I have around 200 spams that were au- companies out there who by choice tomatically deleted and another 100 will not view or allow HTML emails.
- that I have to quickly run through Blank Lines and YELLING make sure your messages are not be- sary multiple blank lines or YELL- ing marked as spam by filters, we ING (all caps), it is more likely to should first understand how the fil- be tagged as spam. For some reason ters determine if a message is spam. spammers feel we are more likely There are actually hundreds of the necessary copy from the message.
to check the message against content filters used but these four provide that is known as generally spam. If a good overview of what is cur- 2. Don’t use hotmail, you are peddling Viagra, mortgages, rently considered spam. Now how yahoo mail, etc. free prizes, etc; your emails will im- can you avoid being tagged as spam? You can avoid this if you follow the 1. Don’t send HTML email.
I know this is a very unpopular using freely available web email ac- rule but it is one of the surest ways counts to send spam for years and emails to avoid the spam filter. If you must from these domains such as Email marketers like to collect data. send an HTML email, make sure you have a high likeliness of being spam.
It is common practice to include track- have already corresponded via email ing information in an email so it can with the target so you are likely on 3. Ask your email provider be reported who actually opened a their accepted list of email senders and if they support Sender message. If your emails use tracking provide a plain text version along with Policy Framework (SPF). IDs, they will have another hit against the HTML version. One common tech- SPF attempts to match the address them towards being tagged as spam. nique for email marketing is to include of the computer an email is coming a plain text version that contains a web with your contact, you can never be receive every message from those on sure that you message will be read. your list. This is easy to do with the tain it will get through, you can always Marc A. Ohmann is the Founding Principal of Digital Solutions, Inc. He can be reached at [email protected] or 952-703-3996. Founded in 1999, Digital Solutions helps businesses attain organizational goals through Inter- net Resources and web development. To learn more, visit


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