Email Marketing: How to Avoid Emails Ending Up in Spam

Regardless of the size of the business, every penny spent on marketing must be worth it – this is especially true for startup businesses that have smaller budgets and unique needs. The good news is, email marketing allows marketers to market their products or services without spending too much. Marketing products or services by email can be a fast, flexible, and cost-effective way of reaching new customers and retaining existing customers by encouraging repeat website visits.

Unlike some other marketing channels, email marketing allows marketers to create targeted and personalized messages that help build meaningful relationships with their customers. Be it a simple, “Thank you for subscribing,” a cheery, “Welcome on board,” or a sincere “Happy Birthday,” email is the easiest and most effective way to let their customers know that the company values them. Customers love it when businesses in Thailand treat them as an individual, not just like everyone else. Email marketing is also one way to improve the conversion rate of direct marketing campaigns. 

However, it is important not to overuse this marketing strategy. Receiving sales and marketing emails can irritate people if it is irrelevant, too frequent, or unwanted. If messages are not targeted to the right people, the recipient may delete the email or unsubscribe. When sending an email, marketers always have to be careful not to end up in the spam filter of their recipient’s mail provider (Gmail, Outlook, etc.) 

What Is Spam?

Spam is unsolicited, irrelevant emails, sent in bulk to a list of people. This can include unsolicited commercial emails or fraudulent messages, like those including lottery scams, phishing scams, or computer viruses. For instance, a customer purchased a list of email addresses from a local business organization. On the surface, that list of addresses seems like it could contain some great prospects for his business, and he wants to send them an email with a relevant offer they can’t refuse. But since those people didn’t permit him to contact them, sending an email to that list would be considered spam.

So, to minimize the risk of that happening, marketers can hire a reliable startup consultancy firm for some best advice, or they can also check out some helpful tips below:

  1. Always Get Permission to Send Emails

    Nothing will get an email flagged as spam faster than sending an email without permission. Just think about what marketers would do when they get an email from an unknown sender – they will ignore it. The first rule of email marketing is to always have permission before sending an email. Sending people marketing emails without their permission is not a recipe for startup business success in the long term. Not only is it unethical, but it’s also ineffective and can potentially land marketers in some unstable position.

    Additionally, marketers must also be mindful of their recipients. Even if their intended recipients are already their customers (or their colleagues, or people they met at a trade show, etc), they should not send promotional emails without getting their permission first. Marketers can consider adding a signup form to their website or giving customers the option to sign up for their list when they purchase from their store.

  2. Write Good Content and Avoid Trigger Words

    People do not like commercial advertisements and pure promotions. 
    Keep in mind that the contents of the email matter, but so does the subject line. It shouldn’t look spammy. Exclamation points, dollar signs, and other trigger words such as ‘Best price’, ‘Free’, ‘Only’, ‘Winner’, ‘Money’, ‘Billion’, are just so obvious and aggressive and must be avoided. 

    To ensure that recipients do not mark the email as spam, try to offer them original and interesting content. Marketers must personalize their email to make it more engaging, tailoring their content to fit a specific audience interest or channel makes it more likely to be seen and remembered and possibly shared or acted on. They must keep it real, informative, and don’t waste people’s time. Moreover, avoid too much text; users will only devote a few seconds to deciding whether to read the email. And create responsive emails that are easily displayed on any mail client or device.

  3. Target the Right Audience

    One of the primary goals of email marketing is to create meaningful conversions. Emails that are sent to the wrong people create poor open and bounce rates. In addition to this, marketers also have to consider how their ROI will be impacted. Keep in mind that it is important to serve the needs and interests of each subscriber. Thus, knowing who to target with their email marketing campaigns is crucial. A targeted audience means a segment of their list filled with individuals who are pleased with the emails they’re receiving.

    List segmentation does not have to be difficult. It can begin with a signup form. One way marketers can segment their list is by demographic. This includes gender, age, and location. Based on the data fields on a signup form, marketers can sort new subscribers from the beginning.

  4. Avoid Including Attachments

    Attachments should be avoided at all costs for two reasons.
    First, they alert spam filters and reduce the chances of an email making it to the recipient’s inbox. For all they know, attachments are used for distributing malware or other malicious activities and are going to attract attention from spam filters, especially certain file types (like a .exe file). Second, the attached files also increase the size of an email, so consequentially, it takes them longer to load. When sending an email, there’s no need to attach a file. Marketers can bypass this by placing the particular document on their website and providing a link, or a CTA that leads to the document’s location.

  5. Don’t Buy Email Lists

    Many marketers are tempted to grow their list by a million potential customers in no time – this can seem harmless behavior, especially if they do it with a “trusted” business partner. But in reality, it is not a good way to avoid spam and is unethical. It violates the agreement marketers made with subscribers and increases the risk of their emails being marked as spam. Moreover, buying contact lists is a bad idea for three reasons:

    • The list won’t be structured or targeted, with profiled contacts divided into groups and chosen coherently.
    • Marketers can’t find spam traps among purchased addresses.
    • It increases the chances of a message ending up in the spam folder.

    Collecting quality email contacts may be a long and tiring job. But to get results, marketers must do it correctly. There are no shortcuts and any attempt to speed up the process can be harmful.

  6. Include Option to Unsubscribe

    One thing marketers don’t want to experience is for their subscribers to unsubscribe from their email list. But they cannot force them to stay. One way they can do this is to respect their decision by including an unsubscribe button or link in every email. Marketers should give their email recipients a way out and should be visible to them. Marketers should understand that it is better to lose a subscriber than to be marked as spam. When more people mark their emails as spam, it is harder for them to get through the spam filter.


Unfortunately, there is no magic formula that guarantees emails won’t land in spam. Anti-spam laws are brutal, and there is no definite guide to help marketers deal with deliverability issues. However, by paying attention to technical issues, cleaning email lists, taking good care to avoid all spam triggers in the subject lines and email bodies, and by following up appropriately and on time, marketers are more likely to preserve their credibility, sender reputation, and protect their IP address and domain from ever getting blacklisted.

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Andy Aditya

As Business Startup Specialist, Andy is often hired as a Virtual Director/Consultant to assist Business Owners in Thailand. For total business information and consulting for doing business in Thailand - Pls check -

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