Many retail jewelers tell us they are collecting names and emails but want to wait until they have 100, or 300 before doing anything with them. The truth is that you need to start with 10, or 30, then keep adding new emails every week as you collect them.
ISPs (the guys who actually control the internet) have hardware filtering which recognizes typical spam patterns. One recognizable spamming pattern is when too many emails sent at once from an email address that's never sent bulk email before. If you suddenly send out 1000 emails over a single night you will get blacklisted.
This is why if you've been collecting email addresses in your store for the last 5 years but haven't used them yet, you could be setting yourself up for a fall by sending an email blast to all of them in one day. Email marketing needs to start slowly and build organically over time.
Organic building of email lists happens every time you collect a new email from a customer in your store, or have someone sign up on your website.
If you do have a large, unused list, you need to start sending emails out a few at a time at first; either randomized or by "best" customers, or ones you're more certain are accurate and for active customers. Slowly add more addresses to your subscriber list.
Just like search engine optimization, the best way to grow an email list is through a slow, organic method. There are many companies that buy customer email lists and send unsolicited emails. From the ISP's point of view they can't tell the difference between someone who bought 1000 email addresses or someone who legitimately collected 1000 email addresses in their store and that those people all really want your information.
In tomorrow's Nugget we'll explain some of the horrible effects of being black listed and how to reverse the blacklisting.