4 Ways to Prevent Ending up on an Email Blacklist (Part 4)

We’ve finally made it to the last post in our series on email blacklisting. Whew — I’m impressed you’ve stuck with me this far! So far, we’ve discussed:

Today’s post will focus on the final piece in the puzzle: how to avoid ending up on a blacklist in the first place. After all, the best cure for getting potentially blacklisted is prevention! Let’s take a look:

1. Be very careful with purchased lists.

First, and foremost, never purchase a list and email to the list immediately. If you’re a Pardot user, not only does this go against our permission-based marketing policy, but more often than not, these lists have spamtraps in them, which can get you blacklisted fast! If you do want to purchase a list, make sure you run a 1:1 emailing or calling campaign outside of Pardot to solicit permission. Once you have some kind of permission received from the prospect, you’re free to email them to your heart’s content.

2. Keep your lists clean.

Are you following best practices when it comes to list hygiene? Make sure you’re only sending to prospects you’ve recently engaged with, in the last year at the most. Sending an email to those ten-year old prospects you haven’t spoken to is a quick way to find yourself on a blacklist, and no one is going to remember you from ten years ago anyway. The average turnover of an email address is about six months, so it’s important to keep a close eye on the age of your prospect email addresses. If you do want to send to prospects that may not have received an email in some time, it’s important that you run a permission pass prior to marketing to those prospects. Not sure how to accomplish that in Pardot? Here’s a Knowledge Base article explaining just how to do that!

3. Implement confirmed opt-in.

Third, consider implementing confirmed opt-in on your prospects, in which prospects who opt in via forms are sent an email that has them click to confirm they’re interested in receiving further communications. Confirmed opt-in confirms that emails are valid, in addition to confirming that the person opting into the mail is the legitimate owner of the address. This is a great way to stop tricksters from putting abuse@spamhaus.org into your forms, for example.

4. Warm up your IP address.

Finally, make sure you warm up your IP address! Nothing’s worse than starting with a fresh, clean IP and crushing your reputation as soon as you start sending emails! It’s significantly easier to ramp up slowly with a clean slate than it is to start from the bottom and struggle to get your emails delivered.

That wraps it up for this series on blacklisting. I hope you found it particularly helpful to learn how blacklists work, how you can handle being blacklisted, and blacklist prevention! If you’d like more information on blacklist prevention and email deliverability, take a look at our Deliverability Handbook by clicking on the banner below.