Is spam affecting your business email?

by Doug Titchmarsh

5 Ways Spam Is Affecting Your Business And what we can all do to prevent it.

If you had only just got online, and received your first few emails, you may be forgiven for thinking you had hit paydirt.
You would already have heard how you won millions on a foreign lottery, then some benevolent foreigner wants to give you more millions because a relative has died and he needs help to get his inheritance, and youíre someone he can trust. And as luck would have it, those personal body parts you donít discuss with anyone are actually too small, but a few people can help you with that for a very low fee. And you have all that cash coming so.....

But youíre a seasoned veteran, and none of that is worth your time, itís just so much spam.
You probably donít even see any of it.
Donít give it a second thought.
Maybe you need to.
It is because it is so easy and cheap to send email that you as a marketer want to use it,and spammers selling dodgy pills want to exploit it. They send out a million untargeted messages in a few hours, and rely on the fact that even if only 1 or 2 % of the people they sent it to buy their wares they will be in profit.

You try to send a more targeted mailing, but due to the spammers all email is being vetted more carefully, and spam is hurting all of our businesses, even responsible marketers like you who wouldnít even think about using it.

Here are the 5 reasons you should consider the implications of spam more carefully.

1 The time it takes to sort your emails is increased, but you can always use filters or antispam software. Which brings us to

2 False positives in antispam software means, if you donít check the filtered out spam, you may miss a valuable contact from a customer. So you have to check it all anyway.

3 Your customers use spam blockers, or their isps do so you need to rethink your newsletter or email to your list of prospects so you donít trigger theirs.

4 Due to the amount of people you can reach with email, you are more likely to encounter someone who reports you for spam even after they signed up and double opted into your newsletter. Result:- your domain gets blacklisted, and you spend time undoing the damage.

5 People are more wary about giving their e-mail addresses out so itís harder work getting them to sign up for your newsletter in the first place. You need an easy to find privacy promise on your site.
Because so many people have used spam to sell their products, we all suffer.
Even with all these spam related problems, email remains a viable and usable option for online marketing, but it needs a bit more care than it did before.
Governments may be stepping in and passing laws to outlaw spam, but the spammers themselves will move their servers to a safe place with a more tolerant government. We need to do our bit to keep email as an advertising option and play safe.
Consider putting your newsletters online and sending a short email with the link to the latest issue in it.
Never buy from a spammers email, and despite some advice you may have seen to the contrary it is unwise to try to reply to unsubscribe, that just proves they have an email address which is live.
Be careful where you get leads from if you buy them, some unscrupulous companies will sell you email lists harvested straight from website mailto links.
CD's full of 1000's of names are not a good buy to market to, they will have been sold and sold again, and the people whose email addresses are on them will have been sent too many offers already.
Always email responsibly, and ensure you give people a plain privacy link, and an even more plain unsubscribe link in every email.

Doug Titchmarsh is the webmaster of several sites including and

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