Thinking of CC’ing Your Subscribers? Think Again!
By Crystal Gouldey June 20, 2011
You have a message you want to get out to all of your contacts NOW. You’ve been meaning to get an account with an email marketing service provider, but haven’t done so yet. What do you do? Are you just going to use that carbon copy (cc) option your email service has?
Using cc to send out your emails will only hurt your email marketing efforts. Besides losing out on all the features an email marketing service can provide, you can damage your reputation as an online marketer.
Why is cc’ing so bad? We’ll break it down for you…
Violation of Privacy
When you cc people on an email, everyone can see the addresses that email was sent to. This can be a problem for a number of reasons:
- Some of your subscribers may use those email addresses to send their own messages to.
- Spammers target these types of emails when data mining. If they find yours, they may be able to collect your subscribers’ information.
- Even if your subscribers’ information doesn’t get abused, they’ll be able to tell you aren’t taking steps to keep their information safe.
- There can be a “reply all” mishap. There are plenty of horror stories about an email meant for one person getting sent to an entire group of people.
- Takeaway: If subscribers find they can’t trust you with their information, they certainly aren’t going to buy anything from you or want to remain on your mailing list.
Are you familiar with the CAN-SPAM Act?
The CAN-SPAM Act, a federal law with a set of rules for commercial emails, requires you include a valid physical postal address, along with a clear explanation on how to unsubscribe, in every email you send out.
This information is added automatically when you use an email marketing service, but it won’t if you’re using your personal email account. This means the responsibility falls on you to remember to do this every single time.
But what happens if you forget?
- Takeaway: If you don’t have your postal address and clear information on how to unsubscribe, you are in violation of federal law.
Substandard List Management
If a subscriber marks your message as spam, they need to be promptly removed from your list.
Email marketing services have an automated feedback loop that can identify and remove that subscriber, but not your personal email. Just like that, you’ve opened yourself up to more complaints that will negatively effect your sender reputation.
Same goes for if someone tries to unsubscribe. You’ll need to constantly be on top of your unsubscribe requests so you don’t send messages to subscribers that opted out. Processing unsubscribe requests in a timely matter is also another rule under the CAN-SPAM Act.
Another point you should keep in mind, your ability to track subscriber activity for that cc’d email will be limited. Your list may be made up of inactive email addresses not even reading your messages, and you’d never know.
Filters are becoming more strict, and messages can be filtered because of inactive email addresses and high complaints, two problems we already identified you might be having from using your regular email service.
- Takeaway: If you don’t manage your list properly, your messages will be less likely to reach your subscribers’ inboxes, and your campaign will become less effective.
Sender Limits and Deliverability Problems
When you’re using your personal email, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) limit the number of emails you can send at a time. This will make your email marketing efforts much more time consuming. Instead of just creating one message in your email marketing service, you’d need to create multiple copies. And instead of everyone getting it at once, you’d have to send it in waves.
But the even bigger problem you’d face is having your messages end up in the junk folder. ISPs can filter messages for a number of reasons, and sending to too many people is one of them.
- Takeaway: If you’re cc’ing a lot of people, your message can get filtered and your subscribers may not even get to see your message.
Don’t Sabotage Your Online Marketing Efforts
Beginning to realize you can be your own worst enemy? Fortunately email marketing services like ours can change this by keeping your reputation safe and your deliverability high.
If you want to get your email marketing campaign started on the right note, try an AWeber account for free for the first month. Your subscribers will appreciate it – and so will you!