What To Do Now About the New Gmail Spam Rules

We love quality email marketing – it makes the world go around for recruiters. A well-timed job alert or informative newsletter can do wonders for engaging with people in your database, generating leads and upping your placement rates.

Poor practices abound in email marketing, however. Google is kicking back against the growing volume of spam on its platform, so they’re tightening up their email spam filters from February.

With its new, stricter filter for Gmail spam, Google says it wants to set an industry standard for email hygiene – and Yahoo is also on board with the changes.

These developments will have implications for email-based recruitment marketing campaigns, so it’s important to understand what is changing, so you can avoid getting caught up in pesky spam filters!

Don’t Bulk Email

If your organisation is sending more than 5,000 emails in one day to email addresses with Google domains (@gmail.com or @googlemail.com), or Yahoo domains (@yahoo.com, @myyahoo.com, “@yahoo.com” or “@myyahoo.com etc), the new filter will automatically place you in the ‘bulk sender’ category, an effective penalty. In practice, this means your email messages may not get delivered at all.

For recruitment marketing purposes, it’s vital that you’re tracking the number of messages going out to candidates and prospects, to avoid falling foul of this rule. When you have a whole team of recruiters using CRMs and automated communication tools daily, it’s easy to go above this threshold.

If you have email-based KPIs in place for your recruiters and business development teams, it’s wise to swap these out for KPIs that aren’t contingent on the number of emails going out, especially cold emails.

Add a One-Click Unsubscribe Button

Most email marketing tools include an unsubscribe link template by default, but many of these force users to click through several buttons to complete the unsubscribe process.

Google and Yahoo are clamping down on this by obliging senders to allow recipients to unsubscribe with one click. Effectively, a multi-click unsubscribe process risks getting your emails marked as spam, so you should start implementing one-click unsubscribe buttons immediately.

Google also advises senders to periodically send check-in messages to confirm that recipients want to stay subscribed. You should be able to regularly identify recipients who don’t open or read your messages over a certain period, so you can unsubscribe them – also the best way to keep your database clean and current.

Authenticate Your Company Email Domains

In the unlikely event your business has not authenticated its email address domains, be sure to get onto this pronto! Google and Yahoo will now require email senders to prove they own their domain name and aren’t hiding behind spoofed IP addresses.

Your email service provider should be making the necessary updates to their DNS automatically, but it won’t hurt to double check this. 

Watch Your Spam Complaint Rate

Monitoring spam complaint rates is always a good recruitment marketing practice, but now it’s essential for any business sending messages to Google email addresses. Under the new Google and Gmail spam rules, you’ll need to ensure the rate of recipients marking your messages as spam stays below 0.3%.

Going over this threshold can drive up your bounce rates or even risk getting your emails blocked altogether, so ignore this rule at your peril!

Create High-Quality Email Content

Technicalities aside, all effective recruitment marketing hinges on creating content that speaks to your audience’s needs. What we’re trying to say here is, don’t be boring or salesy in your emails. Do be obsessed with making your content relevant to whoever you’re sending it to.

How do you do that? By segmenting your audience into specific groups and understanding their intent throughout the stages of the sales cycle (placement pipeline). This will enable your business to create email content that gets opened and read – and more subscribers!

Beat the Gmail Filter for Spam with a Smart Strategy

With Gmail covering about 30% of the overall email market, keeping informed about changes to spam filtering can have a profound impact on how you design and deliver email marketing campaigns. Ultimately, the best approach to overcoming these limitations is to double down on quality content and better targeting of your audience.

In short, the days of “spray and pray” emails are over for recruitment marketing, but all for the better! For actionable advice and an email marketing strategy that supports your business aims, reach out to the recruitment marketing experts at Prominence. We’d love to help.