Email Marketing, Data Breaches & Tightening Regulations?

The email marketing, privacy, and security landscapes have changed significantly since 2003, when the CAN-SPAM Act was passed. Email marketing has heated up, while privacy and security have melted down. While at The Email Design Conference, I had the opportunity to sit down and interview James Koons, dotmailer’s chief privacy officer. We…

The Hierarchy of Subscriber Needs: Are You Satisfying All 4?

Everyone wants to send more “relevant” emails, right? That’s been the buzzword of the email industry for a few years now. However, typically relevance is discussed in narrow terms, generally in regards to content. But relevance is much more than that. Just think about all the reasons that people mark your emails…

Trends for 2015: Views from 10 Email Marketing Experts

To understand the latest best practices and the newest email marketing opportunities, Smart Insights asked me and 9 other email marketing specialists from around the world to share our recommendations. Published in Smart Insights – Email Trends 2015, the trends include: Responsive Email Design Animated Gifs Video in Email Dynamic Customization Predictive…

COI or COIL: Every Opt-In Should Be Confirmed

No, this is not a rant in favor of universal usage of double or confirmed opt-in (COI), although it certainly has its place. I’ve been a long-time supporter of single opt-in as “good enough” for most permissioning scenarios—especially when there’s active consent—and nothing has changed my view on that. However, risks around…

The 3 Pitfalls of Offline Opt-ins

Offline email signups offer many opportunities to lose a perfectly good subscriber through poor process. Shoppers at your stores, patrons at your restaurants, and visitors at your conference booths make great subscribers. The challenge is accurately collecting email addresses in these environments. Avoid these three offline opt-in pitfalls: Transcription, especially without verification….

The Questions My #EEC14 Panel Didn’t Get to

I had the pleasure of speaking on a panel last week at the Email Evolution Conference with fellow email marketing book author Simms Jenkins. We crowdsourced questions online for our session, in addition to taking questions from attendees—but, of course, we didn’t get through them all. So I wanted to go ahead…

Promoting Sister Brands without Violating Permission

If you operate more than one brand, it can be tempting to abuse an email opt-in at one of your brands by extending it to your other brands. Because of the dangers of increased spam complaints, the vast majority of brands wisely resist this temptation and many smartly use their email programs…

Email Signup Failures at Crisis Levels

Opt-in failures are costing brands high-quality subscribers and dampening their list growth. More than 15% of homepage and site registration email signup processes resulted in failures, according to ExactTarget research involving more than 160 B2C brands, including retailers, restaurants, manufacturers, travel and hospitality, and nonprofits. This is a worsening from several years…

The Fundamental Imperatives of ‘Email Marketing Rules’

Back in November of 2010, I wrote an Email Insider column titled ‘Best Practices’ Are Dead, in which I argued that the term “best practices” has been much abused and was too broad to cover what I called the never-break “Ethical Imperatives” and the okay-but-unwise-to-break “Recommended Practices.” I didn’t know it at…

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