Best practices for sending B2B email

B2B senders face numerous deliverability challenges with mailbox providers. One of the main challenges faced is the number of 3rd party spam filters available in the marketplace that a company could use to filter your email. 3rd party spam filters also allow companies to customize the filter to fit their needs. One company may want aggressive spam filtering, which may place more legitimate email in the spam folder. Another company may want less aggressive filtering, which may make it easier for your email to reach the inbox. You also have to navigate the spam filters provided by hosting companies such as Rackspace or GoDaddy as well as traditional B2C mailbox providers such as Gmail, and Yahoo!. 

With all of the variety of spam filters to contend with, it places a lot of emphasis on you to follow email marketing best practices to increase your chances of reaching the inbox. 

B2B best practices: 

  • Follow all standard email marketing best practices, including:
    • Sign up with all available complaint feedback loops and suppress complainers
    • Authenticate all email with Sender Policy Framework (SPF), DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM), and Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance (DMARC)
    • Immediately honor unsubscribe requests
  • Monitor your performance using Return Path Platform.
  • Send both promotional and transactional email to Inbox Monitor. Transactional and marketing email that share IPs could affect each other, so monitoring inbox placement is important.
  • Segment transactional email and marketing email using different subdomains and IP addresses.
  • Don’t send B2B bulk marketing email from your corporate infrastructure. Sending bulk email from a system used for more day-to-day business communication puts that system at risk of obtaining a poor sending reputation. If poor sending practices are used for bulk B2B email, legitimate corporate communications may be at risk of being sent to the spam folder or getting blocked.
  • Use opt-in consent. Purchasing email lists and list harvesting from social networks such as LinkedIn are common B2B practices that result in deliverability problems. Ensure consent for receiving promotional email is obtained at all acquisition points.
    • Don’t assume consent is given by someone to receive promotional email because they attend a webinar, conference or download a whitepaper.
    • If direct consent is difficult to obtain due to other circumstances (such as receiving business cards at a conference), use a confirmed opt-in email that requires a link to be clicked on by the recipient prior to sending promotional email.
  • Identify buyer personas. Know who you are sending to and what their intentions are towards your business. Some recipients may attend a webinar purely for educational purposes and may have no ability to influence or decide on purchasing your product or service. Promotional emails in this case are a waste of your resources that could be spent targeting the right people.
  • Send email according to the prospect’s position in the buying cycle. Use lead scoring to help you send relevant emails to the right people.
  • Use personalization. Using a name is not enough. Try to obtain information about their position in the company and location to help design content that is right for them.
  • Use a branded friendly from name. Most people will delete or send an email to spam if they don’t recognize the sender. Using a person’s name in the friendly from name should be done either when a relationship with the recipient is established or if the brand is synonymous with the name, such as a founder (e.g. Richard Simmons, Dr. Oz)
  • Determine the proper voice and tone for your business. Do your recipients expect a more formal voice and tone (Mr. Smith) or is it more Casual (James). When trying to establish the relationship, the voice and tone can help you make that important connection.
    • Be mindful of coming across as too casual and personal to executives in the beginning of a relationship as some executives may prefer a more professional and formal tone until a relationship has been established.
  • Coordinate messaging across marketing channels. Reinforcing your marketing message across channels is great way to help prospects engage with you.
  • Ensure the subject line reflects the content of the message. People will quickly lose interest in your email or mark it as spam if it doesn’t deliver what is promised in the subject line.
  • Use responsive design. Many business professionals read email on their mobile device in addition to their desktop email client. Responsive design helps to ensure the content is displayed in a manner that encourages engagement.
  • Take full advantage of marketing automation tools available from your ESP. Transactional and triggered email can be very effective keeping your prospects and customers informed or notified about your products and services. 
  • Test and review the trigger logic on any non user-generated triggered emails (e.g. birthdays, renewal notices, etc) on a regular basis. Triggered emails are often forgotten and may not always work properly as you grow your email program. These emails are often sent to people who are not engaged with your email, which can cause deliverability problems. Strong list hygiene practices are key for these messages to get good results.
  • Don’t forget about the landing page. Be sure the experience a prospect or customer has on your website reflects a professional appearance and provides relevant information.
    • Make it easy for someone to know where to go next to request a demo, request additional information or to gain access to your blogs, white papers, or other content offerings.
    • Ensure all forms are easy to fill out and don’t require a lot of time or ask for irrelevant information.
    • Ensure contact information is easy to find for those that may prefer speaking to a sales associate instead of navigating your website.
  • Include links to your social networks in all emails. Some business professionals may prefer to communicate with you using a social network.
  • Test. Use A/B or multivariate testing of different content and subject lines to determine what resonates best with your prospects and customers.


Was this article helpful?
0 out of 0 found this helpful
Have more questions? Submit a request