Are your emails getting through to recipients?

Email Communications 1 Comment

Tristan Collings gives us some insights into the impacts of business emails not getting through to recipients and what to do about it …

Email is an amazing technology, enabling us to send messages at lightning speeds with or without attachments. We can expect to send and receive many emails each and every day.  While technology is excellent when it works, it can and does sometimes go wrong, which can have negative impacts on business.

Sometimes you may send an email or reply to an email sent to you and for some reason the email just doesn’t get through to the recipient.  It’s not until you haven’t received the reply you were hoping for, or the recipient contacts you asking why you haven’t replied to an email, that you realise something has gone wrong.  The end result can be a delay in you getting something you want from the recipient, or vice-versa.  There can be several points of failure, including:

  1. Your mail server IP address might be on an email spam blacklist, which would possibly stop the email from reaching the recipients email client.
  2. The recipients email account and associated email scanner might determine the email to be unsafe and so strip it out without the receiver being aware.

A mail server can be considered as a source of spam and be blacklisted if it has been used as a source of spam in the past.  An IP address is added to this blacklist if it is associated with an open relay email server or the computer has been hacked and is running a Trojan that allows spammers to send from that machine.  If you send emails through your ISP’s mail server then you are generally assured that emails won’t be blocked due to spam or if so, then the ISP should be quick to stop the problem. However, things do sometimes still go wrong.

At Custwin we’re not experts in the intricacies of email and blacklists but we have been on the receiving end of email communication problems and have the following advice, which is largely common sense …

If sending an email that’s particularly important then diarise a note to contact the recipient (by phone) if you’ve not heard back within a set period of time.   Don’t assume the email will reach them.  Even better, a little while after sending the important email, ring them anyway, just to confirm it’s been sent for their attention.  Sometimes, the recipient chooses not to act on the email (e.g. if they don’t have time or it’s something they really don’t want to act on) and it’s a perfect excuse for them to say they haven’t received it (when you eventually make contact, having not heard anything back).  However, by ringing at an early stage to confirm the email has gone to them then they may feel obliged to pay more attention to it.