While Halloween horror is a fun fabrication, there’s a very real terror lurking for pharma marketers--one they may not even realize the magnitude of: spam. A scary unknown is set into motion as soon as you hit the send button. Will your message land successfully in an HCP’s inbox? Or, will it be caught in the frightening spam filter and sent to its virtual grave?
The ramifications of spam extend beyond an HCP just not seeing your message because it’s been routed to a junk folder. Think about the budget that’s been blown on emails that have no chance of being read. Your entire campaign has just been compromised.
Leave the horror to Halloween. Eliminate the ghost in the machine and make sure your message both passes filters and engages HCPs with these three considerations.
1) Spam Quicksand
Of course, you never intend for your emails to enter the abyss. Spam traps, commonly used by inbox providers and blacklist providers, are designed to apprehend malicious senders. However, legitimate senders with bad data also get trapped in the spam quicksand. Unauthenticated email addresses jeopardize your credibility and put you at risk of being blocked by ISPs.
This doesn’t seem fair, especially when you are delivering a researched, well-intentioned message. The responsibility, then, lies within your list acquisition.
2) A Bad, Bad List
How can you tell a bad list from a good one? Bear in mind these problem areas.
- A ticking clock. It might not seem like much can change in a 24-hour period, but the truth is a database that hasn’t been updated in the last 24 hours has already aged out. Using a list that’s continuously refreshed and updated in real time will avoid your message inadvertently ending up in spam.
- A single source. No matter how precise information contained in an opt-in, single-source list may be, that list is still not comprehensive enough for what pharma marketers require for effective campaigns. Select databases that consolidate multiple primary sources.
- An email list in sheep’s clothing. Databases that have never been used for email marketing present a myriad of problems. Physical addresses may be correct, but that does you no good. Email addresses are likely incorrect or obsolete. Opt for a list that is specifically optimized for email.
- A non-verified list. Look for BPA Worldwide certification, which is the accredited auditing source for B2B communications. You can rest assured a list with this certification includes HCPs who have opted in and provided a preferred email address.
3) You Get What You Pay For
Remember those cheap Halloween masks held together only by a thin rubber band that was ready to snap at any second? Sure, your mom got a deal on the costume but once the rubber gave way, you got zinged on the ear.
Email should supplement your other marketing initiatives. Don’t let a shoddy list compromise your digital marketing efforts when your message cannot be continued via email. A quality HCP list is dependent on the source and process in which it has been authenticated and verified.