Blog Post

Keeping your email white list white


I've been blogging a bunch about our new white label email marketing software. In my last blog post, I talked in-depth about the Amazon sign-up process. Before that I was outlining why we made the decision to leverage Amazon's Simple Email Service infrastructure to begin with. I won't rehash those stories (see white label email video here). Today I want to talk about how to manage your white list and keep your reputation clean. This post is particularly targeted toward resellers using our white label email software for their clients.

You know from our previous discussions that each reseller applies for their own API keys from Amazon. Get full training on our Email Module in our Webinar. This ensures that the reseller is entirely responsible for their reputation. In Amazon's eyes, your delivery reputation is tied to your keys. For this reason, it is critical to keep tabs on who is using your keys. I want to walk through that process in today's blog post and show you where in your private label portal you can control this feature.

Understanding keys

The first thing to understand is that the HubShout white label email platform is designed to allow your end-clients to utilize your Amazon key unless told otherwise. Here is a typical progression:

  • You sign-up for your Amazon SES key when you get your HubShout portal (only once)
  • Later you sell a client and sign them up by filling out an SOW (hopefully more than once :-)
  • You grant the end-user access to the Email Module (done by default by the system - but you can revoke it)
  • You activate the Email Feature on the Campaign Details screen (see below)

It is the last step above that you really need to pay attention to. By activating the Email Feature on the screen above you are giving your end-client permission to piggy-back on your Amazon SES keys - unless you have previous entered Amazon keys for their Client Account. This may or may not be a good idea. Let's explore.

When is it okay to allow end-clients to use my email key?

If your client is extremely low-volume, sending only a handful of emails per month, and you trust their list to be clean, it is perfectly fine to allow them to send under your key. Amazon starts you off with a limit of 1,000 emails per day (about 30,000 emails per month). You are paying for these since they are sending with your white label email key. But the cost is extremely low. Ignoring cost, the main concern is growing your sending limits. You grow your limits by not getting complaints. Complaints come mainly from people who didn't really want to get the email you were sending... In other words, a dirty list.

When should I require my end-client to get their own Amazon email key?

If you have fears that your end-clients' list is dirty, or from a suspicious source, it's time to require them to run under their own key. Secondly, if you don't want to foot the bill for your client, you should not permit them on your email key. You can also solve the money problem by charging them for the service, something we highly encourage them to do. A third reason you might want to require a separate key is daily volume. If you are just starting out, and your client has 10,000 emails to send every day, you have a problem.

In summary, we've tried to architect our white label email marketing system with the flexibility to allow you to either share your email key or require your client to run on their own. The procedure is simple, don't complete the last step outlined above (turning the Email Feature to ON under Campaign Details) if you don't want them to share your key. Instead, you would instruct the client to apply at Amazon and tell you the key values. Once you have put these keys into your SEM portal, you would then activate the Email Feature. The software is smart enough to know which keys to use.