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Is this Puppy REALLY from the IRS ? … that’s what his credentials say.

Is this Puppy REALLY from the IRS ? … that’s what his credentials say.

The Dundee Internet Mailing list servers work exclusively with email.  You can personalize your messages by including the list members name along with their email address and use other profile information as needed but the mail is delivered using an email address.

Email addresses are normally the basis for online communication, used by almost everyone, everywhere. They are prolific by nature but also disposable, forgotten and changed, inviting fraud and can be vulnerable to attack by unscrupulous individuals.

To keep your list of addresses safe Dundee Internet Services, Inc., takes all the maximum measures we can to assure the security of each and every email address in each and every list we host on our servers.  Nevertheless email addresses travel outside the realm of our servers as email is a tool that your customers, including yourself probably use every day.

Email therefore is indispensable, especially to the digital marketer. This type of marketing has a positive impact on your business when you have a clean list with opted-in list members; becoming the core of your marketing plans and a primary sources of revenue for your company. However this type of marketing as with so many email based programs is subject to email fraud, which when successful may have a negative impact on your business.

Depending on how the fraud is perpetuated email fraud can destroy your email marketing programs, with lies and pretense resulting in loss customers as they lose trust in your company, service or product.

Email fraud can be caused by:

1. Spoofing
2. Phishing
3. SPAM

Spoof email has the appearance of coming from someone when in fact the addresses are forged and the email is actually coming from someone else.  It only takes a little know how to discover As-Seen-on-ABC@beatmake.win is sent from someone in the Czech Republic and not ABC television.  Spoofed email comes in with bad intentions; from illegitimate marketers to virus borne attachments using a disguised sending identity to get into an inbox.

Customers who receive spoofed email, if they believe it’s from (for example) a company they do business with, will normally trust the message, open it and click on the embedded links and maybe download a virus. – There goes their trust in future emails from that company.

And if your company address is compromised and used to Spoof emails, you might witness an influx of bounce back emails coupled with a low percentage of open rates. Maybe your email address will not be used to spread a virus, but instead, used to send SPAM in your name, resulting in customer unsubscribes.

Phishing:  An effort to procure sensitive data and credentials for malicious reasons.  Such data can include passwords, bank account number, credit card logins, social security numbers and so forth.

Phishing is usually accomplished by spoofing an email from a source that would need or have access to sensitive information. These type of emails can be crafted in such a way that there’s little or no doubt it’s really from your bank, IRS or favorite retail store.

  • The Phisher will usually spoof the From Field by changing the display name to one they want you to believe (IRSrefund) and use a legitimate company domain (@irs.gov)
  • The Subject may be enticing.  “Mr.Jones we owe you a back tax refund”
  • The letter may include legitimate looking logos.
  • The body of the letter may include a links to a landing page that will ask you to verify your information:  social security number, date of birth, mailing address.
  • There may also be attachments which contain malicious content.

SPAM as we all know is a relative of the junk mail your parents received in the home mail box, however modern day spam is more widespread, costly, time consuming and can be computer deadly (Affect your computer with a bad virus).

Some SPAM are attempts at Phishing, others lead the recipient to websites containing malicious software, some have attachments with viruses and others just want to sell you another hose.

How do SPAMMERS get email addresses?spam

  • They buy them
  • Trade lists with other SPAMMERS
  • Harvest them from websites that use email addresses for example in conversations on public forums
  • Capture email addresses with the promise of free services or other items

Online communication with email is great.  It is especially great for digital marketers and the bottom line. Once that email communication has been compromised and a customer perceives they can no longer trust the origin of that communication the digital marketer loses that communication: The email subscriber

Coupled with the lost subscriber comes lost revenue. And in some cases will cause damage on intellectual properly by tarnishing the reputation of the company and its brand reputation.
The best way to avoid the potential of email fraud: use email authentication programs like SPF, DKIM and DMARC along with customer education. Take time to write to your customer list and tell them you will never ask for (passwords, addresses, social security numbers and so on).

If you have more questions feel free to contact a Mail specialist at Dundee Internet.

Is Everyone You Want to Reach on Your Email List? – Probably not

Is Everyone You Want to Reach on Your Email List? – Probably not

Do you believe that email is the best marketing vehicle around? Are you certain?

Sure, email isn’t entirely infallible; it has its disadvantages, but so does every other marketing channel, including Facebook and Twitter.

Consider the Disadvantages of email marketing:  Is everyone you want to reach on your email list? – Probably not and then you find that,

1. Some email goes unopened.  Do you open all your email?
2. There are deliverability issues: Tar Pitting, Spam Traps, stale addresses etc.  At one time or another, you will have deliverability problems.
3. There are creativity limitations of the email marketer or how many ways can you say, “This offer expires soon”.
4. There may be size restrictions set by your recipients in their email client (i.e. Outlook): no graphics allowed.  Do you download all emailed html and graphics on your home computer?
5. Your list members have different communication preferences. Have you wished your favorite email newsletter only contained items you were interested in and sent to your other email address?
6. You might be suffering from List Fatigue; you wore out your welcome.  Be candid, do you want to hear from your favorite store every single day?
7. Responses dwindle as engagement diminishes.  You too are guilty of sending unwanted email to your junk folder instead of unsubscribing aren’t you?
8. Best results may require testing emails with A/B split testing.  Sounds like more work and time.
9. You have to maintain a sender’s reputation.  But you were told all those demographics from that rented list really did fit your ideal buyer profile.
10. Someone has to do list maintenance.

You might compare email marketing to traditional marketing … Is everyone you want to reach watching your TV commercials, opening your snail mailed flyer, reading your ad in that certain magazine, listening to that particular radio show, driving by that billboard …? Of course not. In addition, can you be certain the demographic data they give you is up to date and reports current? Can you even confirm you’re hitting your target audience with the right message?

Can you then conclude (from this brief presentation) that there’s more advantages using email marketing over traditional marketing?

Yes, you can!

Consider the Advantages of email marketing:

1. Instant results. You know who read your email.
2. Fastest marketing channel in use today. Just hit the send button on your keyboard.
3. Rapid brand recognition and reinforcement with behavior based triggered messages.  Acknowledge your engaged emails (i.e.) a purchase, with transactional emails.
4. Send messages according to your list recipient’s schedule.  Allow them to tell you when they want to hear from you again; offer a profile page.
5. You can conduct an email campaign in stages.  Introduce a new brand and follow up with a sale and then a reminder.
6. Allows consumers to respond to your email at their leisure.  They feel in control.
7. Create colorful HTML newsletters to grab interest.  Avoid static, mundane, see it everyday messages.
8. Personalized email from beginning to end of each message.  Not only can you say Dear Mary, you can send Mary information tailored just to her interests and do the same for all your email recipients in no time at all, no matter how many list members you have.
9. Did I mention the most cost-effective marketing tool around?  For less than the cost of a postage stamp, send thousands of targeted, relevant messages to people who want to receive your emails.
10. The best way for customers to communication with favorite brands.

The advantages of email are hard to beat. You will do great with email, using opted-in lists and the latest list technology – So is this all you need? Should you even bother with Social Media?

Yes, you should, because it seems everyone is using it! Of course, like email, social media channels such as facebook and Twitter have their own disadvantages. (Which I will not cover here). However numbers alone support the fact that social media is another powerful way to engage customers with studies that indicate social media comes in second as a marketing tool right behind number one, email.

And like opted-in member lists used in email marketing, Twitter and Facebook, are both permission-based channels. As separate entities, email, Twitter and Facebook are extremely effective marketing tools but working together, they can take customer engagement to new heights.

Advantages using Email and Social Media

1. A continuous way to keep your prospects engaged with your brand. Your customer base will increase.
2. Reinforce buying recommendations with email and social media channels.
3. Email list membership growth. Use your social media “likes” and offer your facebook members the opportunity to opted-in to your existing email-marketing list: likewise offer a signup link to your email list on Twitter.
4. Create an additional support network for your email campaigns. Work your social media connections by promoting the same on facebook while chatting them up on Twitter – all designed to keep your subscribers and prospects engaged with your brand and offerings.
5. Support and grow your subscriber base by including social media links in your emails.
6. Acquire customer insight. Read all the comments, for example, posted on facebook on your business page. Know what customers are saying, are they happy are they complaining? Discover relevant topics and trends that you can leverage to design and prioritize your email marketing efforts.
7. Ascertain the motivation driving your customers to share your content with others by taking the time to learn which social network your type of customer uses more frequently.
8. Communicate directly to your customer by publically answering questions and concerns. Use these questions for a basis in future email campaign.
9. With testimonials and comments on your product, service or company your customer engages others for you. Include reference links in your email to these public posts.
10. Measure the success of email campaigns and the social network connections to you company by taking advantage of free analytic tools.

As you can see, the advantages of using email marketing far out weight the disadvantages of email marketing. The advantage of email marketing used in conjunction with the power of social media further reduces the disadvantages – they become almost nonexistent. It might take some finesse to work out integration challenges between email marketing and your desired social media platform but it’s been proven its well worth the effort. Need help or ideas contact Dundee Internet today!