While many of us are making personal New Year’s Resolutions such as losing weight (myself included), finding a new job, or going back to school, email marketers should also be making a New Year’s Resolution concerning deliverability.  A new year means a new look on your email marketing program.  So, for your first email marketing meeting of the year, make sure you include these in your “resolution” checklist:

-User engagement is now more vital than ever.  Depending upon your business and sending methodology, identify subscribers that have been inactive for 6-9 months, and segment them out.  Removing the unengaged subscribers will help reduce complaints, improve your response rates, and help establish a stronger reputation with the ISPs.

-URL shorteners are not your friend!  Many URL shorteners are listed on major blacklists and will get your emails blocked, so always use full URLs in your campaigns.

-It is time to authenticate with SPF and DKIM.  If you do not have IP and domain authentication set up for your email program, resolve to get this done for 2012.

-Set up and monitor abuse@ and postmaster@ email addresses for your email sending domain.  This way people can get in contact with you if they have questions.  With that being said, monitor the reply email address too.  Nothing is as bad as trying to reply to a brand’s email only to find out that mailbox isn’t monitored.

-Resolve to test, test, and test your email marketing campaigns.  If you are a Real Magnet customer, we have deliverability tools for rendering, usability, and spam checking.

The key to success is to make sure you don’t just do all of the above once, but to continually look back at your email marketing program and make adjustments as needed.  I hope your New Year is prosperous and you strive to keep all of your New Year’s Resolutions!  Until 2013…