Spam – How the Home Based Entrepreneur Can Be Spam Wise

Every entrepreneur engaged in online marketing wants to have as many people to market their products or services to as possible. But with this desire can come the temptation to send email to those that haven’t asked for it.

I, for example have a website with over 6500 email addresses on it. I have another unrelated new business that I want to start marketing for. Can I send those 6500 people an email for the new unrelated business? I wouldn’t dare.

Sending email to this set of contacts is considered Spam because they did not opt-in to my new business, and sending them this unsolicited email can see my email server black listed by other email servers. Incidentally, it’s widely agreed that the term Spam comes from the Monty Python film ‘The Life of Brian’ a film which sees prisoners continually fed Spam meat.

While the terms origins are somewhat humorous, the consequences of sending Spam are not. Email marketing is regulated in the United States by the ‘Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing’ act of 2003 (or the “CAN-SPAM Act”). And breaking this law can result in fines of up to $250 per infringement – not funny.

So what can we do to ensure that we don’t fall foul of the CAN-SPAM act and maintain a good reputation?

Well one thing we can do is make sure that beside every opt in form we state that by opting in they are agreeing that we can send them communications about our products and services.

We can also assure them, in a line under the entry boxes that we will only use their information for these purposes.

We can ask them to ‘Double opt-in’. This would see the customer enter their email address into a box and then they would be asked to confirm their opt-in by opening an automated email sent from us to them and clicking an activation link.

This has upsides and downsides. The upside is that people can’t opt-in those they know without their knowledge. But the downside is that many people won’t be bothered to follow your instructions and find your activation email.

SPAM is a very serious offense and the online marketing community would do well to take it seriously. So take care to make sure that the people you market to have requested your communications so that your journey to home business success goes unhindered.

Marc Francis is a wealth coach, author and television presenter who helps individuals reach their goals and create personal wealth. To find out more visit

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By Marc R. Francis


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