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Tactical Advice on Ensuring Good Deliverability
Chris Traczyk avatar
Written by Chris Traczyk
Updated over a week ago

NOTE: Deliverability setup → As of February 1, 2024, new email sender requirements by Google and Yahoo! require email authentication from custom domains. Non-compliant emails risk being marked as spam or not delivered. Repeated offenses may lead to domain blacklisting. Our Done For You service offers two levels to help ensure compliance - a basic one, and an advanced one. Learn more about it here: click!

Whether your emails end up in SPAM doesn’t solely come down to technicalities – your messaging matters, too! If you send messages which don’t resonate with your target audience, probably they will mark your emails as SPAM. After all, that’s the root cause of all deliverability issues. In this article you'll learn more about following tactical advice that will make sure your deliverability stays intact:

The more relevant your message, the higher your response rate. Just think of it – the less people mark you as SPAM, the lower the chances of getting classified as someone sending unsolicited emails.

You might be thinking – “easy to say, but hard to put into practice”. What does a “relevant message” actually mean? It implies creating a message that corresponds to the needs of your target audience, which brings us to selecting the right prospects.

Make sure that you’re contacting the right people

Before starting outbound campaigns, you should define your ideal customer profile. This means two things:

  • determining the companies that can benefit from your product or service

  • identifying the people within the above-mentioned companies who might be interested in your offer. For example, if your product will be used by Salespeople, make sure you aren’t reaching out to Technology Directors

Exclude contacts who aren’t interested in your offer. While it’s good practice to occasionally recycle your contacts (for example, every six months), make sure you don’t reach out to people who already said “no”. In your new campaign, you should only contact prospects who hadn’t replied to your previous outreach.

At the third step of campaign creation (Prospecting) in Growbots, you select the prospects that you’ll contact. It’s important to cherry-pick the prospects from the list provided by Growbots. The app will generate a variety of different people and it’s your job to choose those you want to contact. Pay attention to their details, company description, and their LinkedIn profiles to see if they are the right fit. Spend 15-30 minutes per each 50 prospects you evaluate. Based on the contacts you reject, you’ll be able to see patterns. For instance, if you reject a lot of “IT directors”, you will be able to go back to the campaign criteria and update them so that they are more relevant for future prospecting.

Design a well-targeted campaign

We clarified the ideal customer profile, now it’s time to talk about designing a well-targeted campaign. There is a number of steps you should follow:

  1. Split your target audience into segments and pick a specific segment

  2. Adjust your messaging accordingly. For instance, don’t send the same message to CEOs or Owners and Marketing Experts. Their pain points and needs vary and need to be correctly addressed

  3. The same goes for targeting companies. While businesses from different industries and of various sizes and locations might all fit your Ideal Customer Profile, it’s important to separate them into segments so you can better address their needs.

With the above in mind, here are a few tips on creating a campaign in Growbots:

  • Use the Campaign Creation Worksheet to define particular segments & write relevant messages

  • Check the breakdown in Successful Campaigns to understand which elements of your campaign performed best. Was it the subject line? Or maybe was it the time of delivery or the email’s length? If you notice a positive correlation between a given factor and your email’s success rate, it’s worth applying your findings in the future campaigns

  • Ask our dedicated Outbound Strategy Consultant for campaign feedback (if you have access to premium support).

Verify emails before you import your own data

Growbots gives you an option to import your own contacts. If you use your own data, make sure to verify all email addresses before sending out your campaigns. Unverified emails might bounce, and as a result deteriorate your domain reputation.

Create the right email content

Once you’ve picked the right prospects, it’s time to craft your message. It’s absolutely crucial that your messaging meets the standards below:

  • the “From” field should be filled out with the sender's first and last name. Don’t use your email address or anything else

  • keep your subject line short and to the point. Make sure to use a custom field and keep it casual. Don’t use salesy, catchy words. For inspiration, take a look at our dedicated subject lines article here

  • the formatting of your message should be plain, don’t use complex HTML structures or fancy signatures. As mentioned before, use as few links as possible as they can harm the deliverability. The same goes for pictures – remember that you’re sending a cold email and not a newsletter

  • avoid SPAM-triggering keywords. Take a look at this list and make sure you don’t use any of them

  • make it easy for your prospects to unsubscribe from your emails. For this purpose, you can use the ‘Unsubscribe’ text custom field. This will automatically stop the campaign for them in Growbots, so you don’t have to worry about contacting them again

  • your footer should resemble the one you use in regular email outreach. Remember to put in your company address. If you target Canada, then remember about the CAN-SPAM law. In this case, you should also keep the number of links to the bare minimum.

Review custom fields

At the fifth step of the campaign creation (Custom fields), you can review the custom fields you’ve used in your sequence. Sometimes the data might not come across as human, so it’s important to verify the custom fields and update them, if necessary. For example, if you mention someone’s position as “CEO, Founder & Owner”, it looks automated. Change it to “CEO”. The same goes for companies with long names or suffixes or even people’s first names (e.g. Joshua -> Josh). To summarize, it’s important to keep your email conversational so it doesn’t look automated.

Avoid mass emailing

When scheduling your campaign, keep your sending volume stable. We've noticed that 100 messages/day is more than enough! Don’t blast a few hundreds emails every couple of weeks. Instead, send the same number of emails to prospects every day. It’s crucial to be consistent with outbound and not treat it as a one-off mass send-out initiative. Otherwise, you’ll trigger SPAM filters if you suddenly email 500 prospects after not sending any emails for weeks.

Furthermore, treat the “send next message on the nearest free sending slot” option as a last resort only, as all prospects will be contacted at once. Skip this option to send the messages in prospects’ timezones and spread their delivery in time.

Dose your emails

Make sure that your sequence doesn’t include too many emails. While it’s key to send out follow-ups, sending too many emails to one prospect might trigger them to mark you as SPAM. Our data shows that four emails in a sequence (so, three follow-ups) is a sweet spot for outbound sales. Sending more might make your prospects angry.

We recommend using the last email, i.e., the “goodbye” message, to maximize your response rate by asking for a “not interested” reply. This will give you a clear answer from a prospect and will also build up your reputation (since you’re actually getting a reply). You can write something in the lines of: “If we don’t seem like a fit, just let me know by replying “not interested”.

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