Inclusivity is the way of the future, allowing business owners to build a productive workplace and enrich it with a vast diversity of experiences and approaches. WorkplaceDiversity is an online platform that helps businesses find and hire professionals that have both the skill and the experience necessary for diversifying their workspace and keeping their productivity high. The platform users were able to look through job offers to match their qualifications as well as look for opportunities in a certain city or area of the USA/ Having been around for decades, the company was using all digital channels necessary for building powerful relationships between companies and experts across a wide range of industries.
Naturally, when it comes to connecting people, email marketing serves an incredibly valuable purpose. In the case of WorkplaceDiversity, the platform offered email subscriptions to let its users stay informed about new job opportunities. Therefore, it was critical to keep their emails punctual and visible.
The team of WorkplaceDiversity realized that their email domain needed a round of health checks after they started receiving complaints from users and subscribers about not receiving or not seeing notification emails in their inboxes. Since WorkplaceDiversity wasn’t tracking their Open Rate on regular basis, there was no clear image of how many emails weren’t reaching their intended recipients. However, the number of complaints kept increasing, outlining the need for professional intervention.
With that, the WorkplaceDiversity team started looking for the tools and experts capable of figuring out the problem and coming up with the best solution. This is how WorkplaceDiversity came in contact with Folderly.
- Domain health analysis. Considering that WorkplaceDiversity didn’t run regular domain health monitoring and lacked the statistical data, we hooked the WorkplaceDiversity domain to our Folderly monitoring tool and launched a round of domain health checks and mailbox audits to see the domain’s current state and find the root of the problem. These checks and tests revealed the following:
- Low sending reputation. We found out that around 100% of emails sent by WorkplaceDiversity were re-directed from inboxes to spam folders. That meant that the WorkDiversity domain reputation wasn’t enough for internet service providers and email services to consider them credible senders.
- Zero deliverability. As the result of spam issues, around 100% of the client’s messages never reached the intended recipient. Therefore, it meant a lack of opens and interactions with emails and no chances for the domain's reputation to build itself back.
When you can’t get the necessary volume of emails delivered to your recipients, you can’t improve your sender reputation and, therefore, can’t solve your spam folder issues. This is why you must always keep a close eye on your performance and start investigating as soon as there is the slightest dip in your open rate. Otherwise, you’ll risk sinking down to 100% deliverability.
After we figured out the source of subscriber complaints, we looked further to see what triggered spam filters and caused WorkDiversity emails to go to spam folders. It’s worth noting that the WorkDiversity domain was created around 20 years ago, meaning that it was an aged domain that is usually trusted and well-received by email service providers.
An aged domain gives you a good advantage over newly made ones. Combined with following the best email sending practices and sticking diligently to your email sending schedule, you can reach stellar productivity and maximize your email marketing results. However, if an aged domain starts neglecting email-sending guidelines and sending volumes, the email service providers will start suspecting that it got taken over by a spammer. Therefore, they will take measures to isolate this domain from recipients.
Additionally, WorkDiversity engaged in warm outreach only, sending to users who previously agreed to receive emails from the platform. After studying the sending behavior of the domain and running mailbox audits, we discovered the following issues:
- Incorrect DNS settings. The WorkDiversity platform started out 20 years ago and has grown significantly since then. However, the state of the domain’s DNS records didn't reflect these changes, not taking new policies, SPF record size, DKMI requirements, and DMARC policies into account, resulting in a number of failed authentication checks.
As a rule, your DNS records are generated automatically by Gmail or your email service provider of choice, so you don’t have to edit them or interact with them in any way. However, when you intend to launch massive email marketing campaigns and rely on email as your main source of business connections and clients, you will have to make sure that your emails are authenticated properly and your authentication protocols take your tools and sending volumes into account. Also, you must keep in mind that modern email sending practices are very strict about anti-phishing measures, meaning that you’re obliged to follow all safety protocols and make your introduction as clear as possible. That means that you will have to review your DNS records and tweak them, adding all the mechanisms and modifiers necessary for the receiving servers to identify your messages properly. It’s a very complicated process that should be done either by working together with your domain hosting provider, by using a DNS record generation tool, or by consulting with an expert.
- Lack of intervals. Upon further investigation, we found out that there were no intervals for the client’s massive email outreach. Such domain behavior patterns are usually attributed to spammers, which explained the client’s negative Sender Score.
The “interval” term stands for the time period between each automated email. Intervals vary from 1 to 3 days and are necessary for balancing your automated sending schedule and helping you keep it steady and predictable. Without intervals, there is no pattern for internet service providers to follow and keep track of, therefore your performance seems chaotic and overwhelming. That may result in you getting confused for a spammer trying to spread as much spam as possible before they’re banned.
- Massive volume of emails without a positive email interaction campaign. WorkDiversity increased their sending activity considerably. However, even though they were communicating with warm recipients, their domain wasn't prepared to send such a large volume of emails. This is because the domain didn't generate enough trust and credibility from email service providers to be allowed to expand sending limits. As a result, the domain's Sender Score fell.
Sending limits are restrictions that outline the exact number of emails you can send per day, per hour, or per minute. Their purpose is to prevent mailboxes from being abused by spammers and to motivate users to work on their sending reputation prior to launching massive email campaigns. This regulation ensures that only trustworthy and reliable senders participate in email exchange and mail recipients can engage in safe and productive communications.
With all the issues outlined, we were able to work on solving them,
- DNS record generation. Before we could start addressing the flow of emails, we needed to fix the foundation of every email outreach campaign - the authentication protocols. Since the original WorkDiversity record was too long and needed some editing in order to create a correct DMARC policy, we used our Folderly SPF generator to build a new SPF record that was readable to internet service providers and compatible with the client’s email campaigns.
Afterwards, we edited the DKIM signature and DMARC policy, equipping the WorkDiversity domain with a clear set of authentication protocols, proving its credibility and reliability.
Whenever you edit your SPF signature, you must see that it doesn’t conflict with your DKIM signature and DMARC policy. It can be done with advanced email outreach tools, such as Folderly Domain Health Check which instantly points out any problems with your email authentication protocols.
- Campaign fine-tuning. With the DNS records sorted, we then proceeded to the client's campaigns to provide the missing pieces—structure and positive email interaction campaigns.
- Reducing email volume. We started by cutting down on the number of emails sent by WorkDiversity regularly to relieve the domain from the pressure it wasn’t prepared for.
When you see that your domain can’t handle the increased email volume, it’s okay to go a step back. In fact, it’s obligatory. Reverting to your allowed sending limit makes it easier for you to fix the damage to your domain reputation and avoid getting blacklisted.
- Building a schedule. Using the insights from the WorkDiversity team, we designed a schedule for sending automated updates and newsletters to the platform users and subscribers. We chose the intervals necessary for working out a pattern.
- Running positive email interaction campaigns. After scheduling our primary campaigns, we began working on improving WorkDiversity's Sender Score. We initiated this by sending emails to a list of warm contacts and ensuring that the recipients interacted with each and every message.
Users interacting with the received message is something a spammer can never hope for. Therefore, when internet service providers see that recipients respond to your emails and treat them like important mail, they grow more tolerant of your presence and greenlight your sending activity.
- Onboarding the client's team. Once the email interaction campaign was complete and the client's primary campaigns were ready to go, we worked directly with the WorkDiversity team. We educated the client's team on email infrastructure as well as the best email-sending practices to follow. We also showed them Folderly's monitoring tools so they could easily navigate them in the future.
You will always have to learn something new in order to stay productive and ahead of your competition. Always look for experts that are willing to consult you and provide you with enough knowledge and insights, so you could use their product more efficiently as well as be able to detect and solve issues on your own.
- Domain reputation restored. After fixing DNS records and running email interaction campaigns, we saw a positive dynamic with WorkDiversity's Sender Score. After running positive email interaction campaigns for one month, we were able to increase WorkDiversity's domain reputation to the levels necessary for emails to be delivered to recipients' inboxes instead of their spam folders.
- Deliverability increased. With main deliverability issues out of the way, we saw more emails getting delivered to intended recipients, no setbacks, and no spam issues.
The client reported positive feedback from their subscribers, while we observed high open rate, open-to-click rate and inbox placement rate. As a result, the client got more emails delivered in spite of sending fewer messages per day.
- Response rate improved. Achieving greater visibility helped the client with establishing a connection with their subscribers, increasing their engagement rate, and getting more users to interact with their content. That meat WorkDiversity was able to keep its domain reputation positive and stay a credible sender in the perspective of internet service providers.
- Subscription rate boosted. Once the client’s emails became more regular, visible, and predictable, more users became eager to subscribe and opt-in to receive messages from WorkDiversity, accelerating the platform’s productivity and letting the client generate more revenue.
- Warm outreach still needs positive email interactions. Sending emails to users who have opted-in and are expecting them doesn't mean you can start blasting out emails left and right. Your domain is still under the scrutiny of email service providers and must maintain a steady email-sending behavior pattern. Running positive email interaction campaigns will help maintain a high Sender Score, allow your mailbox to increase its sending limit, and perform correctly.
- Sometimes less is more. Don’t hesitate to decrease the volume of your emails if you see the first signs of deliverability issues. Keeping up will only make the matters worse while staying within your limits but getting all of your emails delivered and interacted with will bring you more profit, more satisfied users, and more connections.
- DNS records aren’t set in stone. Your email authentication protocols need reviewing from time to time. If you want to perform at your best all the time, you must provide receiving servers with everything they need to identify your domain and any apps or sources that are allowed to send messages on your behalf. Therefore, you need a skilled assistant who can check your DNS records and point out the areas for improvement.
- Don’t ignore your open rate. Keeping a close eye on your deliverability states gives you a good heads up on the processes behind your email infrastructure. When your open rate starts going down that’s a first sign that something is awry, but not to the point where you have to invest a considerable amount of time, budget, and resources to fix it. Therefore, if you don’t have a tool for monitoring your statistics, get it now and learn how to work with it - it will have a great long-lasting effect on your performance.