Is an excellent e-mail delivery tool enough for the success of your campaigns?

Well, it’s done. You’ve choosen the Contactlab platform for your e-mail campaigns. Now? What other steps are essential to make your deliveries effective, the e-mail arrive in the inbox and the contacts engaged?

The value of a good database

Whenever we face with the activation of a new sender or the request to use a new database, our deliverability experts are ready to suggest some valuable and useful indications to improve the quality of the data and consequently the result of the deliveries.

Sending e-mails means configuring all technical aspects of the delivery but also taking care of the lists to be addressed and therefore the reputation of the sender – your brand. A bad reputation in fact very soon leads to being filtered, or worse, blocked, by the main recipient domains and this reduces the effectiveness of any e-mail activity.

While a bad reputation is unfortunately achieved in very few wrong moves, a good reputation is built with time and effort. Recovering a ruined reputation is much more difficult, expensive and uncertain than keeping it good by paying attention over time.

That’s why getting off on the right foot with a new database is very important. Among our proposals that go in this direction, we find the Vetting and Boarding procedures.

What is the Vetting

A qualification process: a simple questionnaire submitted to the brand on the database – and on the e-mail flow, to be filled in before any delivery addressing it. In this way, our experts are provided with information that enables them to complete the analysis independently and at different levels. The aim is to identify the best:

  • Technical configuration: from the implementation of dedicated or shared IPs to dedicated sender domains or tracking links in the e-mails.
  • How to start using the database or e-mail flow: for example the Boarding process that we will see in detail below.

For this phase to give a really useful result, it is necessary that the indications provided by the brands are complete and as correct as possible, otherwise the effectiveness of the whole analysis is compromised.

What is the Boarding

Boarding example


This is the phase that in the example above precedes the date of April, 15th and which puts resources into place to improve the KPIs of your e-mail campaigns. The chart shows the impact of the procedure: the opening rates on the receiving domains reflect a fluctuating movement that is stabilized over time by using targeted tasks under the guidance of our experts. If you are interested to know what actions have been taken in this individual case, please contact us.

It is essentially a risk reduction procedure caused by the use of a new database of uncertain quality, the duration of which depends on the results obtained during its execution.

The main aim is to identify any critical points and discover the best ways to manage or limit them, thus avoiding that new lists cause irreparable damage to the sender’s reputation due to massive or careless use.

How it works

The database is first sampled on a statistical basis and then segmented into tranches whose size is determined by the sampling result.

Both the initial sample and the subsequent tranches are then included regularly in e-mail campaigns:

  • No more than one per day per recipient.
  • For a period whose duration depends on the size of the database, on the sampling results and on the continuous monitoring of regular deliveries downstream of the sample.

The relevant phenomena initially assessed and then measured and reconsidered during the trial includes:

  • The information gathered in Vetting.
  • Hard bounce rates – i.e. invalid addresses – and their deviation from best practice values.
  • Spam rates and abuse reports.
  • Positive engagement rates: openings and clicks.
  • The result of spam filters analysis on messages sent during the Boarding phase.
  • The result of the Inbox Placement observation.
  • The distribution to the target domains.

In most cases the procedure is short and the brand can start sending. In other situations, however, more time is needed to reach a verdict that is perhaps below expectations. However, ignoring any problems is not the best way to proceed. The stakes are high and the benefits of such an approach are very clear.

What can Boarding reveal?

The results can be varied and very different. In the worst case a database can be unusable but also require:

  • Special actions such as the re-optin of the entire database.
  • Split into segments of different quality.
  • Reactivation initiatives.
  • The elimination of problematic segments due to e.g. original data collection mode or obsolescence.
  • The adoption of a different startup approach on different segments.
  • The use of differentiated dedicated IPs.


Whatever the outcome, these procedures offer precise indications to be implemented and tailored to the specific needs of the brand at that particular time. It is a teamwork that starts and goes from the constant collaboration between the brand and Contactlab.

Contact us now. We’ll see together how Contactlab Marketing Cloud and the expertise of a team of experts can help you to design and implement successful marketing campaigns to support your business.