When it comes to bounce data, many companies don’t know how many of their e-mails aren’t being delivered. Others have a general idea, but they can’t tell you why. There are many different reasons for a poor deliverability rate, but the first step toward improving it is to know what it is. The second is to know what’s causing it. This is definitely a situation where what you don’t know can hurt your bottom line.
But a white paper by Redwood City, CA-based e-mail marketer StrongMail, “Getting Smart About Bounce Management,” smart bounce management is vital to improving your e-mail deliverability because you can’t manage what you can’t measure.
Most companies today either underestimate the value of their bounce data, or they don’t examine the right data. A comprehensive bounce management system allows companies to quantify their delivery rate, isolate the exact reason for failure, diagnose the underlying causes, and take corrective action to proactively manage their e-mail lists, change their practices, and safeguard their reputation.
But e-mail delivery rates are only as accurate as the underlying data, and getting it right is easier said than done.
To build a smart bounce management capability, StrongMail advises taking these four steps:
- Capture all data streams. You need to capture all the data streams, including asynchronous and synchronous bounces.
- Interpret data. You need to process bounce data and correctly interpret numerous messages that are often inconsistent.
- Organize data. After acquiring the data, you need to organize it into logical categories, such as hard bounce, soft bounce, block, and technical failure.
- Make data actionable. Once organized, you need to produce the kinds of reports that make the data actionable in addressing the causes of failure.