Yanna-Torry Aspraki Talks In-Depth About Email Deliverability

Yanna-Torry Aspraki Talks In-Depth About Email Deliverability
02 April, 2024 • ... • 4115 views
Diana Kussainova
by Diana Kussainova

Email deliverability is often seen as either too technical or too unpredictable to manage. However, it can make or break the email marketing results of every company.

Want to better understand the deliverability and its benefits for business? Read this interview with Yanna-Torry Aspraki, a renowned professional in the field.

Yanna-Torry Aspraki is a Deliverability Specialist and CRO at EmailConsul & EspecialMail.

Yanna-Torry Aspraki portrait photo
Source: Yanna-Torry Aspraki

Professional journey

Tell us about your career path. How did you get into deliverability and why this sphere in particular?

My professional journey into deliverability began somewhat serendipitously. I started my career at Cakemail, where I initially fell in love with the intricacies of email sitting right behind the Head of Deliverability, Kevin H. It wasn’t long before I found myself gravitating toward the specialized field of email deliverability and loving every minute of it! 

This sphere intrigued me because it combines a unique mix of skills and disciplines — from analytical thinking and understanding technical protocols to navigating business impacts and legal considerations. It’s a realm where my diverse interests and skills converge, allowing me to make a tangible impact on businesses’ success.

Deliverability is often the unsung hero of email marketing; it ensures that all the creativity and effort put into crafting emails actually reach their intended audience. The complexity and the constant evolution of this field presented a thrilling challenge that I was eager to tackle, driven by the realization that mastering it could significantly amplify marketing effectiveness for businesses of all sizes.

On your website, you have a mission statement — “to democratize and simplify deliverability”. What is behind this goal?

This mission stems from a recognition of the critical role email deliverability plays in the success of email marketing efforts and the acknowledgment of its complexity and the lack of accessible knowledge surrounding it. Many businesses, especially smaller ones, struggle with the nuances of deliverability, from understanding how to navigate email service provider algorithms and spam filters to implementing the correct authentication protocols like SPF, DKIM, and DMARC. My goal is to bridge this knowledge gap, making the intricacies of deliverability understandable and actionable for everyone. 

By “democratizing and simplifying deliverability,” I aim to level the playing field, ensuring businesses of all sizes have the knowledge and tools necessary to optimize their email marketing campaigns effectively. This mission is about empowering senders with the understanding they need to navigate the ever-evolving landscape of email, ensuring their messages reach their intended inboxes. This, in turn, improves their overall marketing success.

You have partnered with Selzy to release an email marketing 101 course. Tell us more about why educating matters to you.

Education is at the heart of my mission to democratize email deliverability. Partnering with Selzy to release an email marketing 101 course was a strategic step towards making in-depth knowledge about email marketing and deliverability accessible to a broader audience. I believe that informed marketers are empowered marketers. Through education, we can tackle the biggest challenges in email marketing, from improving sender reputation to understanding the importance of email authentication techniques. This course is designed to provide a solid foundation in email marketing, offering practical advice and actionable strategies that marketers can apply to improve their campaigns.

Educating matters to me because it’s transformative. It’s not just about sharing knowledge; it’s about empowering individuals and businesses to achieve their objectives and drive success. By equipping marketers with the right tools and understanding, we can collectively elevate the standards of email marketing, ensuring that efforts are not wasted due to preventable deliverability issues. This course with Selzy represents a commitment to fostering a community of well-informed marketers who can confidently navigate the complexities of email marketing, leading to better outcomes for their businesses and the industry as a whole.

Email deliverability

In your experience, do you think most companies understand the importance of email deliverability? And what can you recommend to email marketers who need to convince their leads and teams?

From my experience, a significant number of companies do not fully grasp the critical importance of email deliverability. Many are unaware of the substantial revenue they miss out on by not actively monitoring and managing their email sender reputation. 

To convince leads and teams of its importance, I recommend starting with the data: showcase the direct correlation between deliverability rates and campaign ROI. Illustrate how improvements in deliverability can lead to substantial increases in open rates, click-through rates, and, ultimately, conversions and sales. Educating teams on the basics of deliverability, such as the impact of high bounce rates, spam complaints, and list hygiene can also help underline its significance. By framing deliverability as a key component of email marketing success, it becomes easier to prioritize and invest in the necessary tools and practices to manage it effectively.

What is the biggest misconception about email deliverability?

One of the most pervasive myths surrounding email deliverability is the assumption that a business is either too small to face issues, immune due to its size, or that deliverability concerns are merely seasonal anomalies that don’t warrant constant vigilance. This misconception fosters a dangerous sense of security, leading to a neglect of proactive deliverability management and domain reputation monitoring. 

The reality, however, is starkly different. Email deliverability challenges do not discriminate by company size; they can and do affect everyone and it’s not because of “spammy words”. Neglecting to actively manage and understand deliverability can stealthily erode a business’s email marketing effectiveness, with potentially significant repercussions on its bottom line. Acknowledging and addressing deliverability as a critical, ongoing component of email marketing strategy is essential for ensuring messages reach their intended audience.  It safeguards the company’s engagement and revenue generation efforts.

Email marketing comes hand in hand with monitoring and testing, but both of these can affect deliverability. So how can one monitor business goals and adjust the strategy without compromising the email deliverability?

To balance monitoring and testing without compromising email deliverability, it’s essential to use the right tools. Regular seed list testing, whether weekly or monthly, helps track deliverability and identify potential issues early. This approach allows marketers to adjust their strategies proactively, ensuring they achieve their business goals without harming their deliverability with a small budget.

Sender reputation is a complex and nuanced parameter directly connected to deliverability. How can one check its state and start changing it for the better?

Checking and improving sender reputation starts with leveraging deliverability monitoring tools to understand your current standing. The primary issue for most senders relates to list hygiene. Utilizing email validation tools like Bouncer to clean lists and remove unengaged users can significantly improve sender reputation. Also, monitoring for sudden spikes in email volume or too rapid migrations can prevent reputation damage. Maintaining a healthy sender reputation requires ongoing attention to these details.

What are some of the tools you can recommend for monitoring and improving deliverability and sender reputation?

For monitoring and improving deliverability and sender reputation, I highly recommend EmailConsul or Validity. They provide a comprehensive suite of tools tailored to email deliverability and sender reputation management. Both platforms offer in-depth insights and actionable recommendations to improve email performance.

Do popular websites like Sender Score or SpamTester provide useful information?

While websites like Sender Score or SpamTester can offer some insights, such as double-checking authentication or providing SpamAssassin scores, they don’t typically offer the depth of information needed for thorough deliverability monitoring. The only person that has access to that information is the owner of the domain. More valuable information tends to come from inbox providers like Google Postmaster or directly through ISPs, as seen within tools like EmailConsul and Validity, which provide more comprehensive deliverability insights.

How can email deliverability benefit business?

Working with various companies, we’ve seen remarkable results, including a reduction in the volume of emails sent coupled with a doubling of income. By achieving stable, continuous inbox placement across major ISPs and monitoring for issues like blacklists, spoofing with DMARC monitoring and lookalike emails in real-time, businesses have been able to address problems proactively. I’m most proud of enabling companies to maintain high deliverability standards, leading to increased revenue and improved sender reputation. These experiences have reinforced the importance of a proactive approach to deliverability and the value of ongoing monitoring and adaptation.

What brands or companies do you think nail their email marketing?

A standout example of excellent email marketing is Chubbies, a men’s clothing store. They have mastered the art of brand voice, using humor effectively to engage their audience. Despite never purchasing from them, I find their emails compelling and always look forward to opening them. Their email campaigns are a testament to how well-crafted content can enhance brand loyalty and engagement.

A Chubbies email that includes messages between the brand’s marketing team members that discuss the last-minute sending of a promotional email.
Source: Really Good Emails

What’s one thing every email marketer or newsletter author should not do?

One critical advice for every email marketer or newsletter author is to never purchase an email list. Buying lists can severely damage your sender reputation, lead to high bounce rates, and increase spam complaints. Instead, focus on building a list organically. This approach ensures a more engaged audience and significantly better deliverability and campaign performance in the long run.

02 April, 2024
Article by
Diana Kussainova
Writer, editor, and a nomad. Creating structured, approachable texts and helping others make their copies clearer. Learning and growing along the way. Interested in digital communications, UX writing, design. Can be spotted either in a bookshop, a local coffee place, or at Sephora. Otherwise probably traveling. Or moving yet again.
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