Getting Your Newsletter or Ezine Past the Filters

    December 16, 2002

As if it’s not difficult enough to create high quality content for your newsletter or ezine, there’s a new problem that’s cropped up lately that could have a major impact on your success. That problem is the growing amount of spam that is being sent across the internet, and the many filters that are being put in place to block it.

The problem is two-fold. First is the possibility that your newsletter or ezine recipients have activated the spam filters in their email programs, and set them at a high enough level to actually block your legitimate emails to them.

You might also be unknowingly using “trigger words” that can make these filters think your email is spam. Do you know what those words are? Dr. Ralph Wilson, one of the acknowledged leaders in the field of internet marketing, has posted a list of some 250 words and phrases that can trigger some of the most common spam filters. Check out this list at

An even more insidious problem is the fact that some of the larger ISPs are now trying to block spam for their clients before they pass them along. Yahoo! Mail and Hotmail, to name just two, have installed anti-spam measures that can hurt legitimate marketers like yourself by blocking your ezines and newsletters so that they never get to your subscriber list. If you track your open rate and have noticed a recent decline that you can’t attribute to anything else, this may be the cause.

Fight Back!

Well, you’ll be glad to know that help is at hand. There’s a new free tool you can use to check your newsletter before it goes out and make any changes necessary to get it past all these filters. The SiteSell SpamCheck Tool is a quick way for honest marketers to make sure that their e-mails are less likely to be considered spam by ISPs, by Yahoo! Mail and Hotmail (which tosses you into their Junk folders) and even by individual filters set up by an ever-growing number of recipients around the world.

Here’s how it works…

STEP 1: Copy-and-paste your subject, but start your subject with the word “TEST” (without the quotes, in UPPER CASE) so that they know this is a test e-mail. (If the subject does NOT start with TEST, they’ll assume it’s REAL spam and delete it). Here’s a sample subject…

TEST Living off the Grid: A Newsletter for Wilderness Living #29

STEP 2: Copy-and-paste the rest of your e-zine and simply send it, exactly the way you would send it to your recipient, to…

You’ll get a report back (in seconds, perhaps a few minutes if volume is heavy) telling you how good or bad your e-mail is, from a spam-detector’s point of view. You will receive a full, free report of all corrections that you should make to your zine, in order to stay out of the junk folders. It does NOT, of course, actually comment on WHAT you write — first, it’s not that smart. And second, the actual content is YOUR business! 😉

And remember, this SpamChecker is just one feature of the E-zine MailOut tool, which itself is merely one part of the entire system of Site Build It! tools… guaranteed to make any small business succeed online… in a tenth of the time … at a tenth of price.

For more information about Site Build It!, please see…


It’s a sad state of affairs when honest folks have to go to great lengths to protect themselves from the bad guys and the problems they cause. But at least we now have a free tool that lets us “clean up our act” so that we can send our messages out without worrying about getting blocked by spam filters.

Please forward this to a friend!

Les Goss is President of ZebraMoon Design, Inc.

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