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Christopher Knight

False Positives Declining - Lyris's ISP Email Deliverability Report for Q2 2006
By Christopher Knight

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Even after you've done everything you can as a responsible email newsletter publisher or permission-based email marketer (such as watching your email content, mailing history/frequency and list hygiene), false-positives are still a serious threat to your ability to get your emails delivered. BUT!!!... read on for some good news:
First, a definition: A "False Positive" is an email that has been incorrectly been identified as spam or unsolicited commercial email, when in fact it is not.
Email service provider, Lyris, a subsidiary of J.L. Halsey (OTCBB:JLHY), recently studied 57,836 permission-based email marketing messages that were not email discussion list related... that were sent from 57 different organizations to multiple accounts at 39 ISP and ESP domains in the United states and Europe. Email deliverability trajectory (meaning, the full path from sender to recipient) tracking period was April 1st, 2006 to June 30th, 2006.

End results of the study?

False positive filtering is seeing some improvements, and while I think we should give Google's Gmail an 'attaboy' for improving their false positive rate (down to 2.97% for the quarter vs. 44% the previous quarter), the real change in the market is the intelligence between the marketers and ezine publishers. Some of the strategies you can use as an ezine publisher to lower your chances of your emails being filtered as a false positive includes:
  • Watching your mailing frequency
  • Mailing during the opposite time that spammers mail to get your emails past filters that tighten up during high spam load hours of the day
  • Segmenting your list to increase the timing and relevancy of your messages
  • Watching your content to not trip known spam-trap or 'stop' words
  • Tracking your own full trajectory email deliverability path so you know immediately if you have a bulk deliverability problem to solve before it's too late
  • Encouraging your email list members who have compatible email clients to whitelist you if they can

False Positive filtering in the USA vs. Europe:

European ISPs achieved a rate of only .075 percent compared against the USA average of 3.29 percent. This is due to excessive false-positive filtering at (2) ISPs (Compuserve and iWon) and the fact that USA ISPs are more strict with their filtering of spam which results in a splattering of legitimate emails also being filtered wrongly.

Most important lesson to take from this study:

Do your part as a responsible permission-based email marketer and learn which actions (best practices) you can take to impact your own email deliverability. Awareness alone can make a big impact on your deliverability rate. NOTE: Lyris's ISP Deliverability Report Card Q2 2006:

This Ezine-Tip was submitted By Christopher Knight -- Email List Marketing Expert, author and entrepreneur. Get your weekly dose of Email newsletter publishing, marketing, promotion, management, email-etiquette, email usability and deliverability tips by joining the free Ezine-Tips newsletter:

Ezine-Tips for October 12, 2006

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