Jul 23, 2009

Images ON in Gmail – If You’re Authenticating

images-turned-offUnless you’re totally new to email marketing, you know that most email programs turn images in your HTML emails OFF by default. It’s meant to protect your privacy, but is very annoying to legit email marketers for a variety of reasons. Well, Gmail to the rescue.

Matt Vernhout from EmailKarma reports that Gmail is now turning images ON by default, so long as the recpient has sent YOU, the sender, two messages in the past (kind of a neat way to make sure there’s a trusted relationship). Here’s the post from the official Gmail Blog.

There’s another catch — your emails to the recipient have to be authenticated (SPF or DKIM). As a reminder,  Authentication is a method used by many ISPs to judge whether or not an email is trustworthy (learn more at the Online Trust Alliance’s website). All major forms of authentication are built-in and automatically turned on for all your MailChimp campaigns.

As Matt points out, it’s almost worth it to get rid of any "DO-NOT-REPLY" statements you might be using, and actually encourage your recipients to send you emails. If it sounds a little too scary to add a "send us feedback!" link for your entire list, just add that for Gmail subscribers.

Here’s how you can segment your list and send only to your subscribers @gmail.