Why your marketing emails aren’t being delivered

Your email list is a huge part of your campaign's success. How can you make sure your emails get through to your potential backers?

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Joe Piperni

Why your marketing emails aren't being delivered

Whether you’ve used email to plan a corporate event or a family birthday party, you’ve almost certainly heard the dreaded phrase “I never got that email!” It can be frustrating, but in a crowdfunding context, it can cost you potential backers. In order to have a more successful campaign, you need to make sure you’re getting through to as many people as possible. Some delivery issues are on the backer’s end, and you can’t do much about those. Others, though, you can address on your end to get your message out to more people. If you follow the advice in this article, worries that your emails aren’t being delivered will be a thing of the past!

Bad email address

Let’s start with the email delivery problem that you can’t really do anything about: a bad email address. This is probably the most common reason that your emails aren’t delivered. Maybe a backer named Daniel accidentally typed [email protected]. Maybe Backer Sarah put .org at the end of her address instead of .com. There are a ton of possibilities for typos in the world, and there’s little you can do about this after it’s happened.

If you’re worried that you might run into this problem, consider putting a “confirm your email” field into your sign-up form. This will make people enter their email address twice and verify them against each other to make sure they match.

Emails marked as spam

It’s incredibly common for an email to send just fine through whatever system you’re using, only to be stymied on the other end by a recipient’s spam or junk filters. It’s worth asking people to whitelist your email address when they sign up. If they do end up in the spam folder, ask recipients to mark them  as “not junk.”

What gets emails marked as spam?

Spam filters save email users a lot of time, but they’re not perfect. Sometimes they look at a legitimate email and find something suspicious in it. They flag these emails, which can either send them to the junk folder or cause your email server to be blocked entirely. Some things that can cause a spam filter to mark something as suspicious:

  • Attachments (they could contain viruses)
  • Lack of a physical address (the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 requires a physical address be listed for accountability purposes)
  • Spam trigger phrases like “You’re a winner!” or “Triple your income!” (lots of junk mail includes these phrases, although not all emails with these phrases are junk mail)
  • Using link shorteners like bit.ly (spammers use these to hide phony websites, so they’re often flagged even when legitimate)
  • Large images with minimal text (spammers use this tactic to get around the spam filter “reading” the message, so spam filters now look out for this)
  • No opt-out link (you have to give people a way to unsubscribe)
  • Poor spelling and/or grammar (spam email often has a lot of issues in these fields)
  • Excessive CAPITAL LETTERS or punctuation!!!!!

As you can see, there are a lot of things that make it so your emails aren’t delivered… but luckily, they’re easy to avoid. (Take a look at this list of phrases to stop using, for example.) Taking these steps can ensure that more of your emails get to your potential backers. Those potential backers might turn into paying customers!

What email should contain

It’s actually pretty simple when it comes down to it: your emails should have straightforward information about whatever message you’re trying to convey.

In practice, this means using direct, straightforward explanations. If you’re offering a discount, be specific about it (“Become a VIP to save an extra 10% when we launch!”). Make sure you read through your emails for spelling and grammar errors—or, better yet, have someone else read them through for you. If you want to include graphics, go for it, but remember to balance them out with text. And whatever you do, don’t send an attachment to your whole email list at the same time!

It’s a fact of life that not every email will be delivered to every person on your list, and not every recipient is going to open and read it. Following these steps will increase your rate of delivery, though, and that will help you in the long run!

Want help devising an email marketing strategy that works for your crowdfunding campaign? Apply to work with us today!

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