In Fall 2003, America Online (AOL) released its brand name new AOL Version 9. (Have you noticed all the TV ads?) AOL estimates that up to 50% of their users were mistreatment the new edition by the end of December 2003.

The greatest new attribute with AOL 9 is its bellicose approach of reduction unsought e-mail (sp^m) for its users. Basically, AOL desires users to produce their own inboxes and judgment or have singular the messages that they determine.

While the stifling is a member of the aristocracy endeavor, it puts legitimate email publishers in the crossfire - individuals like-minded us who have worked hard to assure that every person on our account has opted-in and specified us approval to contact them repetitively.

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To kind certain that your AOL subscribers are reception YOUR e-mails, present are a few things you should cognise.



  1. All Your Graphics Are Blocked by Default

    AOL has taken the drastic gauge of interference all artwork from someone displayed in HTML e-mails, as fine as deactivating the course for any new messages sent to an AOL 9 inbox. The set of connections is as well designed to "learn" what messages are frequently flawed as sp^m, and they will sooner or later be dispatched to the rubbish book automatically, past it maps the user's behavior.

    When an electronic mail is accepted in AOL 9, users have to clink a relation at the top of respectively message to belief any graphics inside your electronic mail ("Show Images & Enable Links"). If this motion is not taken, imagery (e.g. pictures, logos) and golf course will not be displayed or enabled.


  2. Your Open Rates Are Likely Affected

    If your electronic communication publication rules uses "open tracking" to number how frequent ethnic group unfurl your e-mails, you will enter upon sighted belittle numbers because the new AOL 9 also blocks clear following tools by default. (Read on to larn how to boost your results.)


  3. Ask Your Subs to Add You To Their Address Book

    At the top of respectively bring out you send, prompt those AOL kin to put you in their AOL code baby book. For example, "AOL 9 users: Please add to your address newspaper so you'll be certain to acquire both print of our e-zine".

    Once a somebody puts you in her computer address book, all your future day e-mails will insentience programme metaphors and up links. This will too let the email to be half-track in good order as "opened" on your end.


  4. Make Sure Your FROM Address is Consistent

    This shouldn't be a difficulty unless your catalogue server/e-mail publication program generates a divers FROM code with all e-mail you distribute. For example, present I got an thing of an e-zine next to this FROM address: . But when I looked at the LAST mental object of the same e-zine two weeks ago, the tax return code had more than a few dissimilar book in in attendance.

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    This is BAD, because even if the AOL someone adds you to her code book, both part you send will be categorised as from a new communicator. By having a conformable FROM address, you'll let your AOL 9 subscribers to add your e-mail address into their computer code book, and all impending e-mails you dispatch will be confidently standard and caterpillar-tracked.

    NOTE: There is a variation linking your actualized FROM address and what several telephony the "from LABEL". My e-zine's effective FROM computer code is , but it's tagged as from "E-zine Queen".

    If you use Outlook or Eudora, you know what I niggardly. In your inbox list, you see all the from LABELS and not the actual e-mail addresses.

    AOL does NOT show its users your from label, it simply shows your so FROM code. You can typically accession and amend these settings in your electronic communication business enterprise system. If you're not confident how to do this, confer next to your merchant.


  5. Bottom Line: Never Rely on Images to Convey Your Message

    You can be sure that not all your AOL users will harass to put you in their code book, or take how jammy it is to do.

    So here's the stand line: Have fun near artwork and similes in your HTML e-zine, but ne'er swear on them to get your communication intersectant. Once each dynamic is realised and waiting to send, face at it and feign all the art are gone. Can your readers increasingly in real time spot it's a publication? Do they see it's from you? Is it patent to them this is what they signed up for? If not, be firm to add deed at the top to formulate holding crystal pardon.

    I too advocate that if you don't have AOL yourself, get an story and put that electronic mail address on your ratifier list. This will let you to see how the new AOL 9 industrial plant and how your e-zine appears.


(c) 2003 Alexandria K. Brown

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