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  1. #1
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    Blocked Affiliate Newsletters to Opt-in Lists
    Since there is no Affiliate Best Practices forum I put this here. Have been signing up for affiliate newsletters primarily coupon/deal sites. I do this to see how they position promotions so I can better understand how to work with them.

    Since I use a spam filter I check the daily summary reports for any blocked emails. Daily I find high traffic affiliate newsletters that go to spam. It makes me wonder what percent of newsletters go to spam when they were opt-in? 40-60-80%

    Here is what I see:

    From: coupons@couponnewsletter.com (not real email)
    Return Path: bounce-84572645j-642891@in00.m1e.net

    Affiliates, if you are going to use an email service make sure that your return path goes to a live address and not an automated email address. I get the same bounces for the same newsletter each week because the return path is automated. Have notified the affiliate and they always say they have no way to get around this.

    What a waste of time, money and opportunity. This example is based on an affiliate company that spends over $1 million in Q4 for offline marketing.

  2. #2
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    Am happy to work with any affiliate on this to get their newsletters through. You should be seeing a 50% or better open rate for an opt-in list.

  3. #3
    Analytics Dude Kevin's Avatar
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    You should be seeing a 50% or better open rate for an opt-in list.
    Is that the conventional thinking? With deliverability rates down, and more companies turning to email marketing because of its cost effectiveness, I'll bet were seeing even the good newsletters getting read/opened 25% to 40%.

    50% is really aggressive.
    Kevin Webster
    twitter: levelanalytics

    Kayak Fishing
    Web Analytics and Affiliate Marketing

  4. #4
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    Kevin, for a captive list of opt-ins who agreed to receive your newsletters 50% is very good. For our program newsletters we get 10-20% rates to begin with and then work to target 40-50%. These are targeted newsletters for affiliate programs.

    For consumer based email marketing the numbers are much lower and a 3% open rate is considered good. So if I were a couponer sending 10k to 500k emails every percentage increase in open rate will improve your conversion. There are a few simple tricks that can significantly improve the ability to get your emails to the inbox such as the return path. Most commercial products like Constant Contact use coded return paths that the consumer never sees but the spam filters readily pick-up such as ESC1102687585827_1010934833469_67560...antcontact.com.

    Several years ago we took over a 12k member affiliate program that was getting a 5% open rate by delivering through the network. We started to send via our own email server and doubled that open rate. This told us that the network was a bottleneck. The program was 8 years old and we start checking the bounced emails. It was up to 50% as those affiliates no longer had an account with the network. We cleaned those out and have quadrupled the open rate.

  5. #5
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    Sorry to disagree that affiliates should see a 50% open rate on optin lists. As Kevin noted, 25% is much more realistic with 50% being a goal, but not necessarily achievable.

    Affiliate program newsletters are a whole different animal than consumer emails. I do agree that maybe we need to work around the network newsletter systems, but then can you really say you have a 75% open rate when you are only sending to the 25% that actually opted in to a separate newsletter?

    Just sayin....
    Deborah Carney
    TeamLoxly.com BookGoodies.com ABCsPlus.com

  6. #6
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    I should have been more clear as I am discussing three things here:

    1) Affiliate Newsletters to consumer i.e. couponers emails
    2) Affiliate Manager Newsletters to affiliates.
    3) Acquisition or retention emails to consumers.

    Agree that #2 should be seeing 50-75% open rates. Started the post about #1 as I see that some simple changes can greatly reduce the emails that go to spam folders. Those techniques also apply to #2 as affiliates are filtering so how many newsletters are treated as junk?

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