Three Tiers of Email IPs: Beware Group #2

To continue our discussion on email tales from hell, here’s an excerpt from a MarketingSherpa blog post that shows I am not the only one concerned about the quality of the many compiled and “verified” but definitely NOT opt-in lists. Note the concerns in Group #2, which is where list brokers fall.

One of many changes Thompson’s team made to improve deliverability was to shift its email architecture onto a message management platform. The new platform allowed the team to establish three groups of IP addresses to send from:

Group #1. Transactional emails

This first group of IP addresses was used to send invoices, order confirmations and other transaction-based emails for Infusionsoft’s clients. Thompson’s team wanted to isolate these emails because they had some of the best performance metrics of any email type, and because getting them delivered was critical to Infusionsoft’s clients.

Group #2. Single opt-in lists

This group of IP addresses was reserved for client lists that were built using unconfirmed– or single-opt-in tactics. The team isolated this group because its lists generated a higher number of spam complaints. Grouping them would prevent the complaints from hurting the reputations of IP addresses that sent emails to more qualified lists.

Group #3. Double-opt-in lists

This final group of IP addresses was reserved for email lists that were generated with confirmed- or double-opt-in tactics. These lists generated fewer problems than single-opt-in lists, and therefore benefitted by being associated with each other rather than with lists of lower quality.

It’s one thing to use these lists for telemarketing or direct mail, but when you get into the email realm, the list brokers don’t realize the serious problems they can create.

An open letter to email list brokers…

Dear Mr./Ms. List Broker,

Just because you are splitting hairs and getting around the CAN-SPAM Act, you cannot convince me that a “verified” list is an opt-in list simply by telling me someone from XYZ big company uses it. There are a lot of people who are too far removed from the ugly side of blacklisting to know better. Just as in the SEO world; a lot of consultants were lying about doing SEO when they were in fact just using client monies for PPC. In the meantime, non opt-in lists are messing up the emailing capabilities of others if they’re on shared email servers. All it takes is one company running one bad list and the IP address of the whole server could be blacklisted. We’ve seen it happen and have had to move our clients to get away from the blacklisting caused by another company.

So the big question is…when will the list brokers do the right thing and start offering real, opt-in email lists?

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