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May 2016: The Month in Email

Summer, already? Happy June! Here’s a look at our busy month of May.

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I had a wonderful time in Atlanta at the Salesforce Connections 2016 conference, where I spoke on a panel about deliverability. While in Atlanta, I also visited our friends at Mailchimp, and later spoke at the Email Innovations conference in Las Vegas, where I did my best to avoid “explaining all the things”. Since my speaking schedule for 2017 is filling up already, I’m sure I’ll have plenty of opportunity to explain many more of the things over the next year or so. Let me know if there’s an event that might be a good fit for me, either as a keynote speaker or on a panel.

Steve contributed a few technical posts on the blog this month. He mentioned that Google has stopped supporting the obsolete SSLv3 and RC4, and he explored the ARC protocol, which is in development and review, and which will be useful in extending authentication through the email forwarding process.

Meri contributed to the blog this month as well, with a post on the Sanders campaign mailing list signup process. We’ve written about best practices for political campaigns before, and it’s always interesting to see what candidates are doing correctly and incorrectly with gathering addresses and reaching out to supporters.

In other best practices coverage, I pointed to some advice for marketers about authentication that I’d written up for the Only Influencers list, a really valuable community for email marketers. I wrote about purchased lists again (here’s a handy collection of all of my posts on the topic, just in case you need to convince a colleague that this isn’t a great idea). I also wrote about how getting the technical bits right isn’t always sufficient, which is also something I’ve written about previously. I also discussed the myth of using the word “free” in the subject line. As I said in the post, “Single words in the subject line don’t hurt your delivery, despite many, many, many blog posts out there saying they do. Filters just don’t work that way. They maybe, sorta, kinda used to, but we’ve gotten way past that now.”

On a personal note, I reminisced about the early days of mailing list culture and remembered a dear online friend as I explained some of why I care so much about email.

In my Ask Laura column, I covered CAN SPAM and transactional opt-outs. As always, if you have a general question about deliverability that I can answer in the column, please let me know.

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