Be Authentic(ated): Part 3 of 5
When it comes to email marketing, what you don't know can hurt you.
Deliverability can be a tricky subject, and really impacts your long term results.
When you’re new to the workforce, you don’t really know about the 401k match and how it can impact your long term financial success. When you’re new to email marketing, you don’t really know about authentication, sender reputation, and how both impact your long term email success.
Some people look back and say, "Man, I’d love to go back in time and max out my 401k and company match. I’d be that much closer to retirement..." Well, the same goes for SPF and DKIM authentication for email marketers. Better deliverability might not lead to an early retirement, but it can't hurt.
Both a 401k and email deliverability can be seen as pretty complicated concepts, with intricacies that aren’t worth the brainspace to remember. But just like your financial advisor would simplify the 401k and say "invest and match as much as you can", we're here to simplify SPF and DKIM authentication.
Authenticate the domain that you’re sending from.
It’s that simple.
When you send a piece of physical mail, the recipient is able to take a look at your return address and be confident they’re opening from somebody they know. Email is a bit more complicated than that, but let's run with the mail analogy for a bit.
If you send email from firstname.lastname@example.org, your sending domain name is wineryemail.com. Email Inbox Providers like Gmail, Outlook, etc. look at that sending domain (which is your "return address" in our mail comparison) and the sending IP address the email is originating from (the "wax seal" on your envelope), and hopefully they say "yes, these two are connected in a way".
A handshake has taken place between your sending domain and the email marketing system you're sending from that says "Yep - this IP address is allowed to send email from this domain." That is authentication.
Sender reputation is whether or not that wax seal on the envelope is reputable and trustworthy. The score in most cases is out of 100. It’s like a Wine Advocate rating: loosely based on a whole bunch of things you don’t quite understand, but you really like it when you have 100.
Not sure what your sender reputation looks like? Senderscore.com can give you a good idea. Just ask your email service provider what your sending IP is.
At Premier Cellar we manage private IP addresses for our clients to keep them insulated from the external riff raff out there. We set up SPF and DKIM authentication as soon as you start doing business with us.
Interested in learning more? We’re happy to explain how we’ve gone the extra mile to take care of our winery clients' sending reputations online.
Feel like you need to learn more about Sender Policy Framework (SPF) or Domain Key Identified Mailer (DKIM) authentication? Get in touch.
Handshakes between nameservers and email marketers are a good thing.