Did you know that email marketing is a super affordable and effective way for businesses to promote their stuff? Statista predicts that email marketing alone will make around $17.9 billion by 2027.
Email marketing allows businesses to connect with a larger audience. Also, it helps to improve customers’ connections with your brand. But, like other product promotion methods, email marketing encounters some challenges.
In this blog, let’s review some of the challenges of email marketing. We will also review some best practices to ensure the security of your email messages.
The Importance of Email Marketing
Before we jump to the threats, let’s discuss why email marketing is crucial for all businesses.
Email marketing allows companies to:
- Build Relationships: Email serves as a direct channel for you to communicate with your customers. As such, it plays a significant role in nurturing relationships and building trust.
- Increase Sales: Well-crafted emails can lead to higher conversion rates and increased revenue.
- Targeted Messaging: You can segment your email list to send personalized content to specific groups. This can help increase the relevance of your messages.
- Cost-Effective: Compared to traditional marketing methods, email marketing is budget-friendly.
6 Major Email Marketing Threats in 2023
Now, let’s check out some of the email marketing threats that can hinder your email campaign.
#1. Phishing Attacks
One of the most favorite activities of hackers is phishing. They pretend to be real businesses and send emails to individuals, tricking them into sharing personal information like credit card details, user IDs, or passwords.
This can include credit card numbers, user IDs, or passwords. A hacker may send fake emails asking people to download attachments or click on links containing viruses or malware.
This practice can have a catastrophic effect on both the business and the mail recipients. For individuals, it can lead to significant breaches of data and financial damage. For businesses, it can mean the loss of their carefully built reputation.
Do you know cybercriminals send an average of 14.5 billion spam emails every day?
Spam emails inundate our inboxes with unwanted content. These emails promote products or services we didn’t ask for, which can be annoying.
But worse, they can also affect your email marketing efforts. This includes your recipients marking your email as spam.
Spam can damage your sender’s reputation. When recipients mark your emails as spam, it tells inbox providers that your emails are unwanted or harmful. As a result, your emails may be blocked or filtered, which can reduce the effectiveness of your email campaigns.
#3. Data Breaches
Cybercriminals can access confidential information by gaining unauthorized access to your emails.
Data breaches have led to millions of dollars of losses for businesses and their clients. Also, they have resulted in severe, often irrevocable, damage to a company’s reputation.
Plus, data breaches can mean legal implications, like lawsuits, for businesses.
#4. Malware and Viruses
Viruses and malware are codes that deliver harm to a computer system. They can corrupt computer systems and networks, steal data, or access sensitive files.
Malware is most often spread through malicious attachments and links. The worst part is it can cause monetary and non-monetary harm to everyone involved.
Companies that have become victims of malware experience interrupted operations and data loss. Worse, their reputation is forever damaged. If your recipients get emails that seem to come from your organization, it can erode customer trust.
Spoofing is the practice of posing as someone else to gain the recipient’s trust. This way, the recipient is more likely to take an action that they otherwise wouldn’t. This can lead to damaging consequences for the recipient, like divulging confidential information.
As you can probably imagine, spoofing can destroy customer trust and damage your brand image and reputation. It can make customers start to doubt your company as legitimate.
#6. List Bombing
List bombing occurs when cybercriminals make hundreds of subscriptions to you with fake email addresses. This can lead to inflated subscriber counts, increased costs, and damage to your email deliverability.
List bombing can make your marketing metrics lose integrity. It also makes you waste resources and negatively impacts your sender’s reputation. It may result in higher expenses without the corresponding benefits of genuine engagement.
Best Practices to Protect Yourself Against Email Marketing Threats
Let’s take a look at some of the best email marketing practices that can protect you from online threats.
Conducting Employee Training
Just like you train employees in customer service or sales, educating them about email security is essential. They should know how to spot phishing emails and avoid falling into traps set by cybercriminals.
Regular training sessions can help create a culture of security awareness in your organization.
Promoting User Awareness
Your email recipients also need to be aware of email security. You can include tips in your emails about identifying suspicious emails and encourage them to report anything that doesn’t look right.
Having Email Authentication Standards in Place
There are three main protocols of email authentication standards:
- Sender Policy Framework (SPF): Think of SPF as a security checkpoint for your emails. It tells email providers which servers can send emails on behalf of your company. This prevents hackers from pretending to be you.
- DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM): DKIM is like sealing your emails in a tamper-proof envelope. It adds a digital signature to your emails. This shows to the recipient that the emails are authentic and, indeed come from your company.
- Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance (DMARC ): DMARC builds on SPF and DKIM. It’s like a strict bouncer at the email club. It enforces policies that help protect your domain from email spoofing and phishing. Plus, it can provide you with reports about any authentication failures.
Verifying Your Email List
Like a garden, your email list must also be pruned to remove dead, unwanted email addresses. This keeps your list healthy and prevents you from sending emails to potentially harmful or disinterested recipients.
Using a VPN Location Changer
A VPN location changer can help you browse the internet safely and privately by hiding your real location and identity. This can be especially useful when working remotely, as it can help you access blocked websites or content.
Focusing on Email Encryption
Email encryption is like sending a secret code. It ensures that even if someone intercepts your email, they can’t read its content. Always use email services that offer encryption, especially for sensitive information.
Enabling Firewalls and Other Security Tools
Firewalls are like guards stationed at the entrance to your email system. They block unauthorized access and protect your email servers and networks from cyberattacks.
Using anti-malware Tools
Anti-malware software is very effective in scanning incoming messages for hidden threats. These tools scan email content for potential dangers, stopping them from reaching inboxes.
Monitoring Access Control
Access control is like giving keys to only a few trusted people. It makes sure that only authorized people can access your email marketing systems. It also gives them just enough access for their specific job.
Conducting Regular Audits
Audits are like health check-ups for your email security. By examining your systems and practices, you can identify and fix any weaknesses before cybercriminals exploit them.
Enabling Spam Filters
Spam filters are your email’s bouncers. They stand at the door, keeping out unwanted and potentially dangerous emails. Use robust spam filters to protect your subscribers from phishing and scams.
Leveraging Double Opt-In
Think of double opt-in as a confirmation handshake. When someone signs up for your emails, they receive a confirmation email. They must click a link or reply to confirm their subscription. This ensures that only genuinely interested people receive your emails.
Checking Sender Verification
Sender verification is like checking someone’s ID before letting them into a secure area. Tools like DMARC verify that emails claiming to be from your company are legitimate.
Processing With Software Updates
Software updates can patch up holes in your digital fortress. They fix known vulnerabilities and keep your email marketing software and platforms secure. Thus, it is important to keep your software updated to stay protected.
By following these straightforward practices, you’re building a strong shield around your email marketing efforts.
Remember, email security isn’t a one-time task. You need to stay on top of all email security measures since threats continue to evolve.
With the right email security tools and features, you protect your business and ensure your recipients’ information stays hidden and in safe hands.
There are many threats to your email campaigns. These threats include phishing attacks, spam, data breaches, malware, email spoofing, and list bombing.
To protect yourself from these threats, you can use strong security measures. These include education, email authentication, list hygiene, spam filters, VPN encryption, and more.
When you use these measures, you make your email campaigns safer and more secure.
Having great email security won’t just keep you protected; it will ensure your email marketing campaign is successful. Plus, it is a great way to build strong and lasting relationships with the people you send them to. This makes your customers happy and helps your business grow over time.