Jul 23, 2002
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Learned something neat today. In May when we relaunched all our sites I made one change to our opt-in forms that seemed simple at the time. Instead of just saying "Your email here" I asked our Webmaster to insert the word "work" as in "Your work email here." We're B2B so that made sense for us. If we were B2C I probably would have said, "Your primary email here" or "The email you check most often here." Hey, why not ask for it if that's what you really want people to opt-in using, right?
Anyway, one large national ISP used by lots of consumers, and businesspeople for their secondary accounts, decided for reasons known only to themselves to start rejecting mail this week from the mail server we happen to use. Neither we, nor the company we rely on to send our mail, are spammers or do business with spammers or anything wrong like that. Sometimes these things just happen because a tech thing sets off another tech thing and spam filters spring into action; and only techies can figure out what happens next.
The bad news is depending on the list, 5-20% of the newsletters we sent weren't getting through to the end recipients. Except for two of our lists where our bounce rates were about 2% which is within the range of normal. What was different about those two lists? Same demographics and topics as the other lists, BUT these two lists had been collected 100% on our pages requesting "Your work email" while our other lists had loads of names collected prior to that time. Turns out people had been obeying, turns out those two lists had practically no consumer ISP email addresses on them.