Tuesday, February 12, 2013

there's deliverability and then there's deliverability...

recently, i have entered into another round of "battle of the expert"...why does it always come down to that?

as email marketing professionals we all understand that there is deliverability and then there's deliverability, what i mean by this is that there is getting the email on to the isp's server, but then there is getting it into the inbox. our enterprise sending tool shows us the server to server deliverability, which without bounce codes and so forth, you get 100% deliverability. but what about getting into the inbox?

that's where tools like returnpath come into play. they measure your inbox rates by seeding your send and determining where those seeded sends ended up, spam folder or inbox. in this case, because of dkim and domain key issues (on a single sender profile), 30% of our list landed in the spam folder of our gmail recipients.

now, we talked to our information technology department who owns the tool (why, we still don't understand!) and it is completely obvious that they don't understand the difference deliverability and inbox rates. even though i told them the reason- that they had set up the sender profile incorrectly and used the wrong dkim and domain keys - when they spoke with the tool's tech support, tech support told the techies that we we delivered 100%. which technically isn't wrong. but without looking at the returnpath seeds and understanding how it works you don't get the complete picture. now i am locked into an email battle where i get an email that no lie says "so-and-so is getting email from us and she is on gmail". seriously? she is one person, who works for us, and has gotten our email for the past few years - of course she gets the email....she has "whitelisted" us by default. she isn't one of seeds that comes from a service that we pay to monitor sends for us. so yes mister techie, of course, that logic makes complete sense. not! (battle of the expert, round five.)

the whole point of seeded sends and tools like returnpath are to get a better indication of the health of your email program and your sending ip's. not to have to argue with an information tech person the difference between deliverability and inbox rates. one day we'll get this taken care of settled, but in the mean time, you just get frustrated with having to explain your job and your expertise everyday.