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Email Deliverability The Informz Way

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Email Deliverability The Informz Way Powered By Docstoc
					a white paper
Email Deliverability
The Informz Way




                92 Congress Street
                Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
                1.888.371.1842 ● www.informz.com
Table of Contents                                            About Informz
                                                             Revolutionizing the Way You Do Business
Introduction ........................................... 1   Informz’ professional suite of integrated eMarketing solutions empowers
                                                             organizations of all sizes by harnessing the strength of email to supercharge
The Basics of Email Deliverability .... 2 - 5                your return on investment.

Trends in Deliverability ..................... 6 - 7         Email is a Science
                                                             Web-based technologies from Informz enable personalized, highly targeted
Tips to Improve Deliverability ........... 8 - 9
                                                             communications coupled with real-time reporting features designed to reach
                                                             the inbox and drive results. Sending the right message to the right people at the
Conclusion .................................... 10 - 11
                                                             right time is achieved through email relevancy and your organization’s ability to
                                                             leverage its database. Your successful marketing and communications depends
Resources ............................................ 12
                                                             on reaching the inbox and engaging subscribers. Simply stated, targeted email
                                                             communications improve your response rates, and better response rates
Glossary ....................................... 12 - 13
                                                             increase your message’s impact.

                                                             The Informz Difference
                                                             In addition to on-demand product support, you deserve one-on-one,
                                                             up-to-date email marketing guidance relevant to your unique need, built upon
                                                             strong relationships and reliable collaboration. In order to maximize your
                                                             success, your exclusive eMarketing Advisor is always ready to assist throughout
                                                             the development, publishing, and measurement of your email campaigns.

                                                             Devoted to your professional success, Informz combines state-of-the-art
                                                             technology with our trusted eMarketing Advisors to bring you products and
                                                             services that fit with your marketing goals. With an established global presence
                                                             in Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States, Informz specializes in a
                                                             variety of industries, including:

                                                                 •   Associations and Not-For-Profits
                                                                 •   Higher Education
                                                                 •   Travel and Tourism
                                                                 •   Publishing and Trade

                                                             Through dynamic targeting, intelligent deliverability, precision reporting, seamless
                                                             integration, and expert Advisors, Informz truly is “the way to know email marketing”.




                                                             “Informz is one of the most reputable email marketing service providers that I
                                                             know. They would be an excellent choice for permission marketers seeking the
                                                             best in service and delivery rates.”


                                                                      ~ Ann Mitchell, Esq. President
                                                                        Institute for Spam and Internet Public Policy




                Informz, Inc. ● 92 Congress Street, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 ● 888.371.1842 ● www.informz.com
                                                                              1 - Email Deliverability: The Informz Way




1Introduction
 Approximately 20% of legitimate permission-based email is erroneously
 blocked as a result of spam filtering.
 Email deliverability is an art, pure and simple. Well, perhaps not so simple! But making the
 complexities of email deliverability easy to understand and accessible for email marketers of
 all shapes, sizes, and skill levels is something that we at Informz are committed to achieving
 through this whitepaper and our products and services in general. As technology changes and
 best practices trends respond in kind, it is important to understand that deliverability is just about
 the most important topic going for anyone interested in feeling confident about their electronic
 communications and marketing strategies via email. Over the next few pages, let us take you on
 a journey through the basics of email deliverability in order to help you navigate the essentials and
 provide a toolkit for your ongoing deliverability success.

    Here are some things to think about before diving in:
        • Am I currently using an Email Service Provider (ESP) or am I thinking about
           signing on with one?
         •   Am I (should I be) the person responsible for ensuring the deliverability of my
             organization’s communications?
         •   Am I using email as a communications vehicle or a marketing vehicle, or both?
             What’s the difference?
         •   Where is my subscriber information coming from? Better yet, what’s a
             “subscriber” and why is that important?
         •   Do I think that obtaining permission to send someone an email is important?
             What’s CAN-SPAM compliance anyway?
         •   Can technology influence deliverability or is it all about how my message is
             written or designed?

    Regardless of your answers to these questions we are going to make the basics clear and
    manageable enough throughout this document to help you build a foundation for understanding
    email deliverability and keep you coming back to reference this resource as you build or enhance
    your program.

    So now that you know a little more about what to expect and why you should expect it, let’s get started!
     2      The Basics of Email Deliverability
            The word “deliverability” refers to the overall ability for email mes-
            sages to be delivered to their intended recipients.
            Essentially, if your emails are being blocked by “spam filters” or “bounced” because of
            bad email addresses or technical problems, then this means you are having deliverability
            issues. Make sense? Ok, so a few (potentially) new terms were just thrown at you: “spam
            filters” and “bounced.” Maybe clearing up these and other technical and tactical terms
            related to deliverability will help.

            One of the factors that contribute to a message’s deliverability is whether or not the
            message could be delivered in the first place. Emails that are for one reason or another
            unable to make it to the inbox are either “bounced” or outright “blocked.” Later on we’ll get
            into some of the factors that contribute to why a message is bounced or blocked, but for
            now let’s take some time to get to know more about generally undeliverable mail. We’ll
            start some terms that will help you to better understand the basics of email deliverability,
            and then we’ll dive into the “spam filters.” The following terms are helpful in determining
            why emails are not being delivered or for cleaning up your list for better deliverability in
            general (this is also known as “list hygiene”). Please note that these are Informz’ rules for
            categorizing “bounces” and the same may not be true for all Email Service Providers.

                • Soft Bounce: A soft bounce is an email that was undeliverable because of any
                  of the following reasons: the mail server was down, the mail server was not
                  accepting mail at the time, or the subscriber’s inbox was full. In general,
                  resending the mailing to these subscribers at a different time will help to ensure
                  that they receive the intended message.
                • Hard Bounce: A hard bounce is an email that was undeliverable because of
                  any of the following reasons: the domain does not exist, the domain does not
                  have a mail server, or the email address does not exist in the domain.
                  Basically, these addresses will never receive the intended message because
                  there is no place to actually have sent the message in the first place.
                • Repeated Bounce: A repeated bouncer is an email that was not delivered
                  because of any of the following reasons: An AOL address had previously hard
                  bounced one time, a non-AOL address had previously hard bounced four
                  consecutive times, or a non-AOL address had previously bounced seven
                  consecutive times. It is always best for your list hygiene to remove these
                  addresses from your lists and if possible, reach out to the subscriber to
                  find out their new address.
                • Blocked: An email has been blocked if the anti-spam filter that the recipient is
                  using has rejected your email. If your emails are being blocked and the email
                  recipient opted-in via a subscription form, your email provider’s ISP Relations
                  department should follow-up with the postmaster of the domain to resolve the
                  situation.

            So now that you know the different ways how an email can go undelivered, let’s spend
            some time focusing on why the email might not get to its intended recipient. If you have
            covered all the soft and hard bouncing options and you are certain that you have the
            correct address and that the recipient is able to receive mail, then you might be up against
            a spam filter! Spam is to email as junk mail is to direct mail (or “snail mail”) and spam
            filters are designed to take the guess work out of sorting out the relevant, solid emails that
            you want to receive from the rest of the general noise. Whether you use an email client


Informz, Inc. ● 92 Congress Street, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 ● 888.371.1842 ● www.informz.com
                                                              3 - Email Deliverability: The Informz Way




like Outlook®, a free web-based email service like Gmail ® or Hotmail ®, today the spam
filter is a standard part of your personal email toolbox. These filters identify spam up front
before the mail gets to you, based on the message’s design elements and/or the content of
its subject line or the messaging itself.

For example, that email about the “new and improved, 100% free way to get rich just by
sending in your social security and credit card numbers” is probably safe to consider spam,
and your personal or corporate email service is already pretty great at finding spam like
this before the spam finds you. How aggressively your spam filter works for you might be
based on your personal preferences, your organization’s IT security settings, or (and this is
becoming more and more true) how personally engaged you are with the mailings to which
you have subscribed. The beauty with email is that you can easily click on a message that
you feel is junk or spam and messages from that sender will no longer show up in your
inbox. This is just one of the ways that technology is in place to protect the consumers of
email. Beyond the technology, there are several best practices to follow that will help your
emails get delivered, but there are also laws in place to ensure that your emails are wanted
and CAN-SPAM compliant. These guidelines protect consumers of email and following the
rules will help you with your deliverability. The CAN-SPAM Act is a law that sets the rules
and guidelines for all commercial email communications. Break these rules, and you can
end up with costly penalties and really hurt your brand’s reputation.

The rules are pretty clear:
   A. Email is a permission based communication media – this means that
        an organization that sends marketing email communications must have
        permission to send emails to their recipients. This permission may be implied
        by a vendor/client relationship, by virtue of being employed by the organization
        sending you communications, or most commonly via opt-in subscriptions.
        Opt-in can happen almost anywhere, including online at your organization’s
        website, during check-out for an online ecommerce transaction, while
        installing a new software application, collected via a survey, or even in person
        by collecting business cards at a tradeshow (providing the person gives you
        their permission, of course).
    B. Your email communications must provide recipients with a clear means
       for unsubscribing from your messaging – remember the part about how
       deleting or marking a message as spam sends a different message than
       unsubscribing? When you mark a message as spam, you are in essence
       registering a complaint about the email sender to the ISP. When you
       unsubscribe, you inform the company that you no longer want their messages
       but without hurting their reputation by stating that the message was unsolicited
       (as reporting it as spam does). This is the route you should take if you had
       subscribed at one point and decide you are no longer interested in receiving
       these communications. Making this option clear for your recipients will also
       ensure that they choose your preferred route of list removal rather than
       damaging your reputation as a sender via the spam button.
    C. Your email communications must clearly list your organization’s
       physical mailing address and phone number – this ensures that you as the
       sender are a valid and real organization that a recipient can contact directly
       should they have issue with any of your content.
            Your CAN-SPAM compliance will require some more in-depth attention to the rules, and
            what we’ve provided is just a baseline for you to begin. For more information on the
            CAN-SPAM act, visit this page on the Federal Trade Commission’s website:
            http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/business/ecommerce/bus61.shtm.

            Following the CAN-SPAM rules is a great place to start when considering deliverability.
            Once you have a handle on the rules of permission based email, then you should master
            the different methods that spam filters use. In general, spam filters are sophisticated and
            have many different methods of filtering. Here are some additional terms you will likely
            encounter:

                •   Blacklisting: Blacklisting is a process of monitoring the internet for email
                    traffic being sent from unsolicited sources (spam) and then listing that information
                    in a public database. ISPs use the blacklisting databases as a way to update their
                    spam filters to look for emails coming from those IP addresses and subsequently
                    block the emails in an effort to protect consumers. As a basic rule, don’t spam
                    and you won’t get blacklisted – but this is not always the case. Sometimes, your
                    IP address might be “guilty by association” and if you are using an Email Service
                    Provider that uses shared IP addresses then you are at risk of sharing the
                    reputation of another organization’s practices. Your best bet is to make sure that you
                    are following the rules and using an ESP that provides you with a static IP address.
                •   Address Recognition: When you receive an email, your spam filter will check to
                    see if the sender’s email address is in your address book or on your server’s list
                    of acceptable addresses. Even if you subscribed to a resource that you trust, your
                    spam filter might not recognize the sender address and place the message into
                    the spam folder. At this point, you should then “whitelist” the message (and the
                    sender) by unmarking the message as spam and verifying that it came from an
                    approved sender, thereby sending the message to the ISP that this is trusted
                    content that you wish to receive. Whitelisting can go also filter on the sender’s IP
                    address/domain at the server level.
                •   Trapping: Some of the ISPs will plant email addresses across the internet in order
                    to catch spammers. Spammers will sweep the Internet looking for email addresses
                    to spam and when they use the planted addresses, they are then “trapped” and
                    blacklisted. Essentially, you should only be sending emails to addresses that you
                    have permission to send to, so as long as you are following the rules you won’t
                    have to deal with trapping.
                •   Challenge Response: The idea here is that ISPs or corporate filters will mark all
                    messages as spam before the email is delivered, forcing the sender to prove
                    otherwise. This setting challenges the sender by making sure that a human sent
                    the email via a link that must be manually clicked. Once the sender verifies that
                    they are a trusted source, the sender will be “whitelisted.” Auto-response and
                    triggered emails may have trouble getting through this sort of filter, so it is important
                    to have a strong relationship with your recipients, and to make sure that they are
                    ready to receive your messaging.
                •   Rule-based: This most commonly used filter marks spam based on rules that
                    are pre-set by the ISP or the corporate sever. Basically, set the filter to deny all
                    subject lines that contain the word, “FREE” and these messages will be marked as
                    spam. For this type of filter, it is very important to know about words and phrases
                    that are commonly blocked, and to avoid them when creating your mailings.



Informz, Inc. ● 92 Congress Street, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 ● 888.371.1842 ● www.informz.com
                                                              5 - Email Deliverability: The Informz Way




    •   Probability: This type of filter uses the same principle as Rule-based filters, but
        this is based on the user’s ongoing definition of spam. The more the recipient
        marks certain items as spam and others as acceptable, the more the filter “learns”
        and then makes filter decisions based on these actions.
    •   Volume blocking: Senders who send high volumes of emails to lists that are
        brand new (meaning the sender never sent to these addresses before) or that
        have a high rate of “bad” email addresses may be blocked as a result of volume
        blocking. This is because it is widely known that spammers send large volumes
        of emails to lists that are purchased or harvested from Internet sites. As a rule of
        thumb, it is best to grow your lists slowly and via best practices for permission-
        based email acquisition. Remember, your email results will have greater impact
        on a small list of subscribers who genuinely want your communications, than a
        large group of unknowns.
    •   Content based: The content of your email matters for so many reasons, like
        delivering important updates to large memberships or communities, that it is
        extremely important that your emails do not look or read like spam. For a content
        based filter, if it looks like spam or smells like spam then it must be spam.

Many of the most popular email clients have filters of their own to determine what makes it
to the inbox. Here are a few more things that some popular ISPs look for:

    •   A high percentage of users hitting the spam button to register a complaint.
    •   A high percentage of messages being sent to trash without being opened.
    •   Inconsistent mail volume – Sudden increases in mail volume from an IP address
        can look like spam, so try to maintain a consistent mail volume. If an increase is
        needed, do so gradually.
    •   Inconsistent subject lines – Yahoo!, for example, suggests that senders should not
        customize the subject line by merging in personal information.
    •   Inconsistent ‘from address’ – Another spammer trick is to constantly change the
        ‘from address’.

Hopefully, you are feeling more confident in your knowledge of deliverability and feel like
you have the resources you need to make some good decisions about your email
marketing program. The basics presented in this document are meant to be your
introduction to deliverability and should help you to frame your email marketing strategy
in a way that is consistent with current technology and trends. Remember, there is a lot
to know about deliverability and there are entire jobs devoted to maintaining strong ISP
relationships and advocating for senders who follow best practices. When getting your
email marketing program started, make sure that you are prepared to take responsibility
for your delivery issues and to learn the actions you need to take in order to solve them.
Deliverability is a core component of your overall email marketing practices and it is very
important to stay up to date on all the latest advancements and techniques for ensuring
your messages are delivered.
     3      Trends in Deliverability
            Three trends in email deliverability that you should know about if you
            are looking to launch or revitalize your email marketing program.
            Now that you have learned some of the basics of email deliverability, you’re ready to take
            a look at where email deliverability trends are heading. This section will briefly focus on
            three trends in email deliverability that you should know about if you are looking to launch
            or revitalize your email marketing program. Remember, the terms outlined in the first
            section were designed to help you out with some of the more complex topics in the rest of
            this document. If you stumble across something that isn’t meshing with your
            understanding, feel free to review the earlier section for a refresher or check out the
            glossary of terms at the end of this document. If you are all set, let’s jump right in:

            Trend 1: Sender Reputation

            Sender reputation is an anti-spam criterion that ISPs and other email receivers use to
            determine whether to accept or reject email. As ISPs and webmail services get more
            sophisticated about how they determine the fate of incoming email, your sender reputation
            plays an increasingly important role. Because you aren’t a spammer and you have worked
            very hard to acquire permission to send your content to your subscribers, it might be said
            that reputation is everything! In general, your email reputation is made up of some
            combination of the following: consumer complaints, unknown users, spam trap hits,
            sending infrastructure (your IP address), and sending stability. The more complaints
            you receive and the more it appears that you have an irregular program, the worse your
            reputation becomes. Simply put, a damaged reputation is a hard thing to overcome. Being
            confident about your email marketing practices requires patience, attention to detail, and
            a working knowledge of the “do’s and don’ts”. And don’t forget, a strong reputation will
            contribute to strong deliverability.

            Trend 2: Email Authentication

            Another important trend in the deliverability world is the use of email authentication. ISPs
            use email authentication to determine if a sender is spoofed or if an email provider has
            the authority to mail on your behalf. Email authentication includes a variety of methods
            that allow recipients to validate the responsible sender of a message. Authentication will
            be especially beneficial if you are sending to primarily personal email addresses, domains
            like Yahoo!, Hotmail, or Comcast for example. It is important to note that there is no “best”
            authentication method, but rather there are several different email authentication types
            and each have their advantages and disadvantages. The types of email authentication
            that Informz recommends are Sender ID, SPF (Sender Policy Framework), DomainKeys,
            and DKIM (DomainKeys Identified Mail). Sender ID, SPF, DomainKeys, and DKIM are all
            similar in that they help validate you as a sender, but the implementation of each method
            is different. Due to the technical nature of email authentication, it requires changes and/
            or additions to your DNS, so you will need the assistance of an IT professional from your
            organization.




Informz, Inc. ● 92 Congress Street, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 ● 888.371.1842 ● www.informz.com
                                                                7 - Email Deliverability: The Informz Way




Trend 3: Subscriber Engagement

The third, and possibly most important, trend in email deliverability is that ISPs will now
be using engagement metrics as an important factor in determining if your emails get
delivered to the inbox. Engagement is one of the most important new trends in the world
of email deliverability and now more than ever, ISPs are tracking engagement with email
messaging and factoring this into an email’s overall deliverability. This means if an email
consumer wants to keep getting the emails they subscribe to, he or she will need to open
the email and click on hyperlinked content on a regular basis. For example, you might
have signed up for a newsletter six months ago but never actually opened the newsletter
since the time you subscribed, and therefore the ISP may start sending those mailings into
the spam folder or blocking them altogether. Bottom line, the more engaged a recipient is
with an email subscription, the more likely the emails will be delivered to the right folder in
the recipient’s email tool.

Individuals have the choice of deleting or ignoring a message or unsubscribing from the
service sending their communications. But, their choice has some real implications for
folks who sign up or “opt-in” to receive messages and still may find that the messages are
being blocked. ISPs enlist a range of technologies to protect the users of their free or paid
email accounts and as a consumer of email, it is important to know that deleting a
message in your inbox sends a very different message than marking it as spam. Every
action that takes place, including opening an email, clicking on links, and forwarding is
tracked by the ISP and possibly the sender. It is the overall action that the email recipient
participates in that is known as engagement. In a recent interview Yahoo! said they
measure engagement by the following factors:

    •   Subscribers are marking the message as ‘not spam’ if it goes to the spam folder.
    •   Subscribers are opening messages.
    •   Subscribers are clicking on the links in the message.

If you are the person in your organization that is responsible for sending email
communications out to large lists of subscribers, then you want to be sure that your emails
are being delivered by following all the best practices available to you, and you also want
to keep your subscribers engaged to ensure that your emails continue to be delivered.
Knowing the current trends of email deliverability is just a starting point. For a truly
successful email marketing strategy, you will need to stay up-to-date on all the latest trends
as technologies change.
     4      Tips for Improving Deliverability
            Improving deliverability requires a real commitment to understanding
            both email deliverability in general and the habits of your subscribers.
            Now that we’ve gone through the basics of email deliverability and some of the prevailing
            trends, let’s jump right into some tips for improving email deliverability. Please note
            that improving deliverability requires a real commitment to understanding both email
            deliverability in general and the habits of your subscribers. The ability to review and
            understand your emailing activity metrics is also a key component of ensuring list hygiene
            and making the necessary changes to your campaigns based on the real-time feedback
            you receive from your mailings. To make this section easy for quick reference, we’ve
            provided a straightforward outline of useful tips for improving email deliverability in general.

            Why would someone who signed up to receive my emails use the “Report as spam” button?

            The three main reasons for spam complaints & disengagement from your subscribers:
                1. Unrecognized: They didn’t recognize your branding in the email, so they did
                   not know it came from you.
                2. Unexpected: They didn’t know to expect your email on a certain day or at a
                   certain time.
                3. Unwanted: They just plain didn’t want your messages anymore.

            Here are some tips to avoid becoming Unrecognized, Unexpected, or Unwanted:
                1. Be easily recognizable:
                   - Maintain branding consistency – make sure that your emails, your website, your
                   social networks, and all other brand opportunities have the same look & feel!
                   - Re-enforce branding in subject lines and from address – the first impression is
                   the most important and your subject lines and from address let people know it’s
                   you (think of this as caller ID for your emails).

                2. Set expectations and fulfill promises:
                   - Use opt-in forms and welcome messages to set expectations about frequency
                   and content of your mailings – then stay within the rules you have established!
                   - Balance and be consistent with frequency – sending too little is as bad as
                   sending too much. Be sure to learn your subscribers’ behavior by checking
                   reports to see how often and when your messages are opened.

                3. Keep your content relevant and valuable:
                   - Make sure your messages reflect the reasons why your subscribers first
                   signed up – build upon your subscribers trust and provide them with the value
                   they seek out of your brand.
                   - Segment your groups and target your messages for true personalization –
                   demographics make a big difference, and your email activity reports are your
                   best friend for supercharging deliverability!




Informz, Inc. ● 92 Congress Street, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 ● 888.371.1842 ● www.informz.com
                                                               9 - Email Deliverability: The Informz Way




Things you should always include in your email:
   •   A message such as, “To ensure receipt of our emails, please add
       someone@yourcompany.com to your Address Book.”
   •   A “modify profile” link – this link will help your subscribers to pick and
       choose precisely the type of communication they wish to receive.
   •   An obvious unsubscribe link – it’s always better for your recipients to
       unsubscribe than to click the spam button! You might have lost them for
       now, but they didn’t hurt your reputation! Also, give them the chance to
       provide a reason why they unsubscribed. This can be helpful insight into what
       others who haven’t yet unsubscribed might be thinking about your mailings.

Required elements for your email:
   •   Unsubscribe link – this is mandatory for CAN-SPAM compliance.
   •   Physical mailing address (No PO boxes!) – this is also mandatory for
       CAN-SPAM compliance.

Things to avoid in your emails:
   •   Too many images without enough quality copy – many spammers use lots of
       images in their emails and this is the tip off for the spam filters to block.
   •   Common spam words, excessive capitalization, and punctuation.
   •   Written out URLS: for example:
       Wrong: Visit www.informz.com for more information.
       Right: Visit the Informz Website for more information.

Deal with your inactive subscribers:
   1. Define what inactive is for your organization
   2. Routinely identify inactive subscribers
   3. Try and win them back
   4. Remove them if they don’t respond

Monitor reports and remove repeated bouncers:
   •   Test your emails before you send to uncover potential deliverability problems.
     5      Conclusion
            Email deliverability is an essential part of all email marketing and
            Informz is your partner for total email deliverability.
            Our ISP Relations Team works for you behind the scenes by:
            •      Managing ISP relations
            •      Checking blacklists often
            •      Monitoring delivery outcome
            •      Managing blocks and challenge response messages

            The key to success is in creating content that will bring value to your subscribers. In the
            end, this will lead to an increase in engagement, an improved reputation, and the
            assurance that your emails get delivered to the inbox. You’ve learned that email
            deliverability is a challenging, complicated issue and we are committed to helping you
            reach the inbox. At Informz, you are supported by an experienced, customer-focused
            ISP Relations Team with superior technical and industry expertise and a solid reputation.
            Employing the latest technology to ensure properly monitored messages and rapidly
            processed responses, our ISP Relations Team ensures that our clients are in full
            compliance with the ever-changing regulations and up-to-date on industry best practices.

            Informz offers a wide range of deliverability services, including:

            Regulatory Compliance: The rules and laws governing email are ever changing. Our ISP
            Relations Team reliably monitors, evaluates, studies, and contributes to the latest in email
            regulations and best-practices worldwide.

            Static IP Assignment: Informz assigns each client a permanent IP address, preventing
            blocked email due to IP address conflict.

            List Maintenance: From subscription forms that allow for easy opt-in to your lists, to
            suppression list of domains that should never receive email, Informz helps you maintain
            your email lists in compliance with the rules that govern both you and your recipients.

            Domain Monitoring: Informz employs domain-level monitoring to manage the number of
            connections opened for each ISP domain at any one time. This ensures emails are
            delivered at a maximum rate without triggering volume filters at large ISPs ( AOL & Yahoo!).

            Content Assistance: SpamAssassin, one of the most widely used content-based spam
            filters for B2Bs and B2Cs, allows users to test their emails prior to sending. This filter flags
            words associated with spam and identifies changes to improve your email. Our ISP
            Relations Team and your eMarketing Advisor then work closely with you so that you understand
            the suggested changes and learn to improve the content of your future email messages.

            Reputation Services: Informz lists all IP addresses with ISIPP’s SuretyMail Accreditation
            Service. We’re also a ReturnPath SenderScore partner. These valuable services allow
            receiving systems to recognize your email as authorized, legitimate mail.




Informz, Inc. ● 92 Congress Street, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 ● 888.371.1842 ● www.informz.com
                                                              11 - Email Deliverability: The Informz Way




Challenge Response Handling: Ensuring that your system remains free from delay and
obstruction, Informz processes all challenge responses swiftly and professionally.

Whitelisting with major ISPs: Email service providers with “whitelisting” status help to
increase email deliverability and decrease the potential of filtering. With key relationships
and whitelist status for major ISPs, such as AOL, Hotmail, Yahoo!, Outblaze, and United
Online, as well as anti-spam organizations, Informz helps to ensure that your emails sent
via our system get directly to your audiences.

Bounce Processing: Nearly all email campaigns result in a number of bounced
messages. After rapidly analyzing bounces against hundreds of rules, Informz properly
classifies each bounced message and immediately takes appropriate action: opt-out,
resend, or suspend message delivery.

Blocked Mail Review: Our ISP Relations Team confirms that your email is not mislabeled
as spam by reviewing all pieces that get returned and flagged as “blocked” by our system.

Abuse Management: The Informz ISP Relations Team works on behalf of our clients to
respond to spam complaints. If necessary, Informz will follow up with our clients to ensure
compliance with policies and procedures, and when appropriate, defend the validity of the
list acquisition to anti-spam organizations or the company/email client.

Deliverability Partners:
            Resources
            Sender lookup sites
            http://www.mxtoolbox.com/blacklists.aspx
            http://www.senderscore.org
            http://www.barracudacentral.org/lookups

            Email Authentication
            http://www.dkim.org/
            http://www.openspf.org/
            http://domainkeys.sourceforge.net/
            http://www.microsoft.com/mscorp/safety/content/technologies/senderid/wizard/
            http://www.microsoft.com/mscorp/safety/technologies/senderid/default.mspx

            CAN-SPAM
            http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/business/ecommerce/bus61.shtm




            Glossary
            This glossary is intended as a quick reference for readers of this document. Some of the
            terms listed below may not have been addressed in this document. If you have any ques-
            tions about any of the content in the document, please contact marketing@informz.com.

            Blacklist: Published report of senders who have been reported or accused of sending spam.

            Bounce: An email that has been returned to sender (Hard bounce = a more permanent
            bounce usually occurs when email address is no longer valid, Soft bounce = returned to
            sender because email recipients mailbox is full or their mail server is temporarily down).

            CAN-SPAM Compliance: The United States’ first national standards for the sending of
            commercial email and requires the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to enforce its provi-
            sions. Compliancy includes having an unsubscribe link and physical address on email
            messages.

            Click-Through Tracking: Reporting the number of clicks that occur when recipients click
            on a link in an email.

            Data Input form (subscription form): A form created within Informz to allow potential new
            recipients to subscribe to your email communications. This can be used on a website or in
            a mailing.

            Data format: Part of the “uploading subscribers” process, a place holder for the fields in
            the import file. The default format is just email addresses. To import more than just email
            addresses, a new format needs to be created so that it matches the fields in your import file.

            De-duping: Removing duplicates records (Informz does this automatically for you).



Informz, Inc. ● 92 Congress Street, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 ● 888.371.1842 ● www.informz.com
                                                            13 - Email Deliverability: The Informz Way




Email Service Provider (ESP): Company providing email services (Informz).

Email client: Program or application which allows you to retrieve email and send it to
others via the internet (ex: Outlook, Hotmail).

HTML (Hypertext Markup Language): The standard protocol for formatting and
displaying documents on the internet.

IP Address: The numerical sequence that serves as an identifier for an Internet server
(each Informz client has their own dedicated IP address).

ISP: Internet Service Provider (examples: AOL, Earthlink, Time Warner).

Mailing Activity report: The main report to find the basic stats for a mailing (who was
sent, delivered, bounced, unsubscribed, clicked, what was clicked).

Opens: When a recipient has opened an email message or has their email client set to
view messages with a preview pane.

Opt-In: An email recipient that has given specific permission or has signed up to receive
mailings from you. Informz is a permission based email service provider. Clients must
have permission to send to their recipients, purchasing or renting lists is not allowed.

Subscription Form (data Input form): A form created within Informz to allow potential
new recipients to subscribe to your email communications. This can be used on a website
or in a mailing.

				
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