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  • Writer's pictureMichael Goff

Silver Bullets

Alright, it’s time to talk about one of my pet peeves!

Yes, it’s my blog, so I get to rant and rave about what I choose :-P

And so today, I’d like to discuss “silver bullets”.

When talking to other people in the industry, eventually you’ll hear a few. “Simply do X, and money will rain down on you from a thousand cash guns!”

Here are some examples for email marketing that I’ve heard over the years:

  • You need to make sure you have DMARC and PTR records set.¹

  • You should mail subscribers who didn’t open your morning message again in the afternoon, with a new subject line. If you don’t, you aren’t maximizing your message.²

  • Emails should include banner images at the bottom, otherwise you are throwing away clicks (and money).³

  • “Buy my product!” There are lots of vendors out there who have commoditized a trick for better inboxing.⁴

  • X day of the week is a bad day to mail -- queue your campaigns on Y day for the best conversions.⁵

When people tell you these strategies, it feels like an easy thing, a simple change that guarantees revenue. And so, you feel like a fool for not already having done it...and you race to your computer to get things organized.

Here is what I’ve learned -- maybe these “silver bullets” do work for some people, but they’re not universal truths or secrets. Every list, domain, and IP combine to make something that inboxes uniquely. Also, a clever idea may show signs of working, then it loses its “magic” just as quickly as it came. There’s no gaming the algorithms, and there’s no substitute for the cold hard truth: your email program will work best when you focus on quality traffic sources, and only mail engaged subscribers.

I’ll temper this by saying, sometimes you’ll be surprised after running a test for something new (I know I have...recently even), so it’s important to stay connected, and try new things...

But, don’t lose sight of your overall goals and priorities. Don’t be tricked into chasing unicorns!

¹ In my experience, only SPF and DKIM really matter.

² Caveat here, I haven’t found this to be great for affiliate offers, but I think this strategy does work for branded lists that don’t push their products too hard.

³ This being said, Loop7 does include banners at the bottom of most of our emails. However, I don’t think this makes sense for all lists and brands, for a variety of reasons.

Of course, there are diamonds in the rough!

Any day of the week or time of day can work...there are so many factors, including the product being sold and the list itself. There is no “magic” day/time of day.


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