Email marketing is a must-have for any serious Realtor, loan officer, or business owner these days. In fact, emailing offers, updates, reports, and newsletters is a critical way to reach your audience.
Research shows that it has one of the highest ROIs, is mobile-friendly, easy to personalize, and fosters high levels of interaction and engagement.
However, if you’re currently running email marketing campaigns then you also realize just getting your messages through to your audience’s inbox is a significant challenge.
In fact, studies show that only 79% of commercial emails actually hit the receiver’s inbox, and that number is continuing to shrink year by year.
Faced with an unprecedented barrage of email messages (many of them illegitimate), email servers are filtering and flagging messages as spam like never before.
Here are the 10 most common reasons why email marketing from Realtors and loan officers goes to spam:
1. You didn’t get permission
The single biggest reason why email marketing gets sent to spam is that the sender doesn't have permission! In fact, unless your email recipients have subscribed or opted-in (even if you met them in real life and got their email address from the business card they handed you!), you could be in violation of the CAN-SPAM Act. That comes with stiff fines as well as virtually ensuring that you'll end up in their Spam folder.
2. Your IP Address is flagged for Spam use
Have you ever heard of “guilt by association?” Well, if your email was sent through a server that has previously been flagged for sending spam, your legitimate email may automatically fall under that label, too. Therefore, it’s recommended that you use reputable email platforms like MailChimp, Infusionsoft, CoverKit, and others.
3. Your Open Rates are subpar
Webmail providers track the rate of email opens, as well as how many are deleted, in their spam filtering formulas. In fact, 26% of email campaigns that are mistakenly flagged as spam can be attributed to low open rates.
4. You’re not familiar to your subscribers
Even if someone did opt-in or subscribe to your email newsletter, they may not remember you – leading them to not open your email or even report it as spam. Spam complaints affect about 21% of all emails that never make it to a recipient’s inbox, whether that’s legitimate or not.
5. Low Mailbox Usage rates are holding your emails back
About 19% of emails that don't hit your audience's inbox are being held back because of low mailbox usage. Mailbox providers have carefully tuned spam filter algorithms, and one of the major factors is the ratio of the active versus inactive email accounts you’re sending to. So, if you’re sending to a large number of email addresses that aren’t being used or have been dormant for a long period, it raises a red flag with the spam filters.
6. A subject line that misrepresents the email
Your subject lines should accurately characterize the content in your email, as well as who it is coming from. But, too often, companies and marketers try to get too crafty with their email subjects just to attract attention. Furthermore, there are a whole lot of scams out there who blatantly lie in their subject lines. According to a Litmus and Fluent survey, 50% of email users have felt “cheated, tricked, or deceived” by at least one email subject line that’s hit their inbox. Furthermore, according to the CAN-SPAM act, a subject line that’s intended to mislead the audience is actually illegal.
7. Misleading sender information
We just covered subject lines that misrepresent the ensuing email and trigger spam filters, but the sender information can do the same thing. Shifty scammers or overzealous advertisers may pretend to be someone they’re not in the “from,” “reply-to,” or “to” fields. So, if you list your name or set up your address to look like you’re the president of a company that doesn’t exist, affiliated with a public agency, or display other authority you don’t have, you’re in violation of the CAN-SPAM act AND ensuring that your emails are marked as spam.
8. There’s no “Unsubscribe” link
There’s nothing that screams “SPAM!” louder than an email without a clear (and usable) unsubscribe button. According to internet protocol and CAN-SPAM law, you must have a link to unsubscribe or opt-out of any email list, which usually is presented clearly at the bottom of the email. Once they click, the process of unsubscribing also has to be simple and easy, so you can’t make them fill out extraneous information, pay any money, or visit more than a single page on your website. When someone does unsubscribe, you also must process that request and remove them from any subsequent mailings within ten days.
9. Your email is missing a physical address
One of the other requirements for a legal, legit email is a valid mailing or physical address. To ensure transparency for any company or sender, the email must contain a current street address, although a valid P.O. Box will work.
10. Your email contains words that trigger Spam filters
To stem the tide of spam, many email providers filter for certain trigger words that reek of unsolicited messages. Common words that trigger spam filters include:
• cancel at any time
• check or money order
• click here
• dear friend
• e-mail marketing
• for only (dollar amount)
• great offer
• increase sales
• order now
• promise you
• special promotion
• this is not spam
• to be removed
Want more help with effective email marketing that won't end up in spam folders?
Wait, you're STILL not utilizing email marketing? Here are 10 reasons why that's costing you business.
Back in 2006, the options for online marketing for real estate agents, mortgage lenders, and just about any business owner were a lot more limited. Sure, there was Facebook, but few people were using it for business, Twitter was brand new, AOL Instant Messenger was fun but not really useful for marketing, and Myspace was booming. Myspace!
But every time you went to a broker training or any marketing Lunch-and-Learn, you were told that you should start building your email marketing campaign, including organizing and adding to your email database, creating great content, and sending it out consistently.
Thirteen years later, and so much has changed with social media and online marketing (R.I.P. Myspace!).
However, email marketing is STILL the tried and true method for reaching your audience directly where they live, work, and correspond.
And you probably STILL haven’t implemented a regular email marketing campaign.
Why the heck not?
(Or, maybe you’re paying a company to send out generic “canned” content like gardening ideas, holiday notices, and maintenance tips that they send out for everyone else! BORING! – and ineffective.)
Another (painful) way to think about it is this: imagine how big your email list would be now, how many extra deals you would have closed, and how much additional income you would have earned if you had started your email marketing campaign years ago? Ouch.
You’re STILL missing a HUGE opportunity to generate leads.
So, let's hammer this home again:
Email marketing – such as newsletters, market reports, special offers, educational pieces, local profiles, invites, surveys, and even videos – offers some unique and highly effective benefits, serving as a perfect complement to social media and other marketing venues.
We’ll cover some email marketing nuts and bolts and best practices in a future blog, but to open your eyes to how critical it is for any Realtor, loan officer, or any business, consider these 10 facts and stats (all based on credible research and studies):
1. Email marketing In fact, email marketing reportedly offers an average 3800% Return on Investment (ROI), which means it should bring in $38 for every $1 spent. In real estate, when a closed deal typically means thousands of dollars, that ROI is probably much higher.
2. Email is 40x more efficient at acquiring new clients than Facebook or Twitter. And a client on your email list is 6x more valuable over their lifetime than social media followers alone!
3. A message is 5x more likely to be seen when emailed compared to just posted on Facebook, or receive 6x more click-throughs than Tweets.
4. People who subscribe to your email list are 3x more likely to share your content on their social media accounts than people who come about your marketing messages other ways.
5. 72% of people prefer to receive promotional content by email compared to only 17% who want to see promotional messages on social media. (Although Instagram and Pinterest are higher than 17%.
6. Even better, 77% of consumers actually want to receive emails from brands and professionals they like and believe in – that’s you!
7. Email messages can be personalized to the receiver, and personal subject lines are 26% more likely to be opened. Additionally, personalized email messages see 14% higher click-through rates and 10% higher conversion rates.
8. All of the email marketing platforms allow you to track results like your Open Rate, Clicks, etc. and even see who signed up to your list or unsubscribed. You can also sync your email marketing campaign with your website, Facebook page, or simple landing or splash page that builds your list by giving away something for free.
9. Email marketing is still one of the best methods to deliver a singular message and drive traffic with a direct Call-to-Action. You can promote a new listing, announce an Open House, offer a CMA, talk about a special 0%-down loan program, talk about first-time homeownership, or just about anything else. Your email is just the "teaser," and with one click, the recipient is on your blog, website, watching your video, reading your report, or emailing you.
10. Email marketing is so powerful because of its exponential nature, picking up steam, scale, and results the more you do it. For instance, it takes about the same amount of money and time to send out a fantastic email to 10,000 as it does to 1,000 or just 100!
So, are you finally going to start your email campaign, or are we going to be talking about this again in 2025?
Probably not, if statistics hold, as only 17% of Realtors, lenders, and small businesses are utilizing email marketing campaigns.
Maybe you think it’s too expensive (it’s definitely not), hard to set up (we can have your campaign for the whole year mapped out in a single weekend), or, most likely, you don’t have the time or energy to create content and actually DO IT all (that’s what I’m here for).
Let’s solve that and get you on track to generate new leads, clients, and closed deals with great email marketing campaign – just email me to get started!
I don’t sell real estate or loans – I just make you guys a whole lot of money!