Top 10 Email Spam Trigger Phrases to Avoid in Your Marketing Efforts


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Reminder: PMarketers have to be careful when drafting emails to avoid having them be triggered as spam. Marketing teams send out bulk emails on a consistent basis to leads, opportunities, and customers in an effort to show as many people as possible why their business’ products matter.

Here, we’re going to break down our top ten spam trigger words to avoid in your emails. You want every email your marketing team sends out to count, to give your business the best possible chance at increasing conversions.

“Multi-level Marketing”
This refers to the practice where businesses hire salespeople to go around and try and sell someone a product, then have that person recommend the product to someone else. Sometimes this is a legitimate practice; most of the time, it’s comparable to a pyramid scheme. Any business practice connected to a pyramid scheme should be avoided like the plague. Even googling “multi-level marketing” brings up questionable results, so it makes sense that any emails with the term in it will be triggered as spam. Don’t get it confused with multi-channel marketing, which is actually a growing strategy that works well.

“Increase Sales”
This is both surprising and not surprising. It’s hard to imagine a B2B marketing team drafting an email for hundreds or thousands of potential clients and not using this phrase; however, that’s exactly why it’s often triggered as spam in the first place. Here, context matters. It’s a phrase that will eventually come up in an email, but there are ways around it. For example, don’t use the phrase in the subject line. Steer clear of trying to look spammy and try these 67 techniques instead to boost sales.

“Web Traffic”
If you saw an email with “Web Traffic” in the subject line, would you think it’s legitimate if you don’t know where that email is coming from? Increasing web traffic for an online business is absolutely essential for the success of that business. The more traffic your website receives, the more likely you’ll convert that traffic into sales. Spammers and scammers take advantage of this term because it’s something all online businesses are doing research on.

“Online Biz Opportunity”
Shortening words in an email might seem like a really convenient way for you to write emails quickly, and with a personal touch, but that’s not professional and it should be avoided even with the best intentions. “Online Biz Opportunity” screams spam to anyone who’s been on the internet for more than ten years. No Millennial or Gen Z’er will ever click on an email like that. We know better. You’d find this phrase on a sketchy Craigslist ad — not in a mass email for a legitimate marketing campaign.

“While You Sleep”
This is one of those phrases that’s simply too good to be true, everyone knows it’s too good to be true, and yet, it’s still used constantly. Marketing campaigns typically require more than a day to complete, along with the sales process and then completion of a purchase, depending, of course, on what you’re selling. You don’t want to oversell in general, so try to limit the hyperbole for your business’ and marketing team’s own benefit.

“Free Consultation”
Few things in today’s world are actually free, which immediately jumps out to just about everyone. Even if the consultation is free, there’s always a catch, and if there’s a catch, that means your marketing team isn’t being transparent to its targeted audience. Unless you’re truly offering a free consultation for potential buyers, do not advertise it as free. To avoid being marked as spam, leave “Free Consultation” out of the subject line.

“Once in a Lifetime”
This is another phrase that’s simply not true — ever. There’s no marketing campaign or product that’s going to offer a potential customer a “once in a lifetime” experience. Hyperbole in general needs to be avoided if you’re trying to make a conscientious effort to avoid having your emails being marked as spam.

“As Seen On…”
Who can honestly look at this phrase and not think about horribly scripted and produced infomercials for products that barely work? This also isn’t the best strategy for your marketing team because if the product they’re trying to sell has already been done, it shows that your product isn’t exactly better than anyone else’s. Having your products or services associated with a term that implies them being cheap or unreliable.

“Call Now”
Last, but definitely not least, is “Call Now,” which is innocent enough, but like “As seen on,” is often associated with potentially-sketchy products and services. It’s good to implement actionable content in your marketing strategy, but this phrase has been around for too long to be associated with anything other than a marketing ploy. Plus, customers today are more interested in using other channels to reach out to a company — especially if they’re being reached via email. That alone could set off a red flag.

The Final Word
It’s important for marketing teams to make sure their emails aren’t being marked as spam or contain too many spam trigger words. If they do, they will either be ignored altogether or get reported, which doesn’t make the business look good. Marketing teams should avoid hyperbole whenever possible and avoid making claims that are too good to be true because they’re not really fooling anyone.

Spammers and scammers use these words to pray on those who are easy to manipulate. Any reputable business would never go out of their way to be anything less than transparent with their customers. They prioritize the customer experience and want to make sure the buyer’s journey is as clear as possible. The more a potential buyer feels like they can trust a company, the more likely they’ll return. First impressions matter, so it’s best to make sure even a simple email isn’t being interpreted as spam.

Reuben Yonatan
Reuben is the founder and CEO of GetVoIP. With an extensive background in cloud communication technologies, and building industry leading internet companies, Reuben's writings blend commentary, research, and perspective on cloud computing, digital media, business/leadership strategies, and enterprise solutions. Follow Reuben on Twitter @reubenyonatan.


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