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The Constant Contact Guide to Email Marketing by Eric Groves

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How Four Types of Permission Can Make or Break Your Strategy

The CAN-SPAM Act was created to provide the federal government with the ability to pursue blatant spammers. The requirements under the Act should be considered the minimum standards for legitimate senders of email campaigns. As email marketers we are not just trying to comply with the law, we are also trying to build our reputation, trust, and loyalty with our recipients.
In order to deliver beyond the requirements of the Act, you need to practice permission. Overdeliver on the expectations you set and strive to enhance your relationship with each communication you send.
The following sections explain the four types of permission and give you some rules to follow so you can impress your customers and build trust.

NO PERMISSION

Sending emails with no permission is a violation of the law, but the worst thing that can happen to your business when you send permissionless emails doesn’t have anything to do with federal fines. You’ll get spam complaints. Lots of them.
Spam complaints are your recipients’ way of telling you that, for one reason or another, they no longer want to hear from you. In the case of some email programs (AOL, for example), they actively tell their customers to use the “This is spam” button rather than unsubscribe. When people receive an email they didn’t ask for, they are much more likely to report it as spam. A spam complaint is your recipient’s way of telling you that he has lost trust in ...

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