Can I Send Marketing Emails to Non-Subscribers?

A Reddit user working at a B2B company based in the United States asked the following question.

I work at a B2B company in the U.S., utilizing HubSpot and Salesforce, and we’ve had an influx of requests from our sales team to send emails on their behalf.

The salespeople have contact lists, but the recipients haven’t formally opted in to receive marketing emails.

Although we have clear opt-out options, we’ve been strict about not allowing these campaigns since HubSpot and Salesforce both have terminology in their contracts around explicit opt-ins.

Curious how others handle these requests?

Reddit user ksl2493

As you correctly pointed out, inbound (opt-in) email marketing automation tools have restrictions on sending sales outreach emails.

So it might work for a little while but eventually they’ll shut down your account AND it’ll harm the email deliverability of your entire HubSpot and Salesforce accounts.

However, there is a correct way to do cold outreach. Here’s what you do:

  1. Use a separate domain (never use your primary domain).
  2. Set up the SPF, DKIM and DMARC records for that domain, our checklist will help.
  3. Set up 3-5 email accounts for that domain (use Google Workspace/Gmail).
  4. Use a cold outreach automation tool like Instantly or Lemlist.
  5. Start the warmup process and let it run for at least 2 weeks, preferably 4 (both tools I mentioned above include this service in their plans).
  6. Validate your contact list to prevent bounces, read this post.
  7. Start with low volume and slowly increase incrementally over several weeks.
  8. Do not send more than 100 cold emails per day per account (this includes your warmup emails).

How to comply with CAN-SPAM when sending marketing emails to non-subscribers

Identify Yourself

Clearly identify who you are in the email. Use your real name and your company’s name if applicable.

Use Accurate Subject Lines

The subject line should accurately reflect the content of the email and not be deceptive in any way.

Include Physical Address

Your email must include a valid physical postal address.

This can be your current street address, a registered post office box, or a private mailbox registered with a commercial mail receiving agency.

Provide Opt-Out Mechanism

Include a clear and conspicuous way for recipients to opt-out of receiving future emails from you.

This can be an unsubscribe link or an email address where they can reply to opt-out.

Once someone opts out, you must honor their request within 10 business days.

Honor Opt-Out Requests Promptly

If someone opts out, remove them from your email list promptly and ensure they do not receive any further emails from you.

Hope that helps, let me know if you have any questions in the comments below.

Hans Desjarlais
Hans Desjarlais

Hans Desjarlais is a seasoned tech entrepreneur with over a decade of industry experience. Faced with low open rates in his previous lifestyle software business, he dived into the complexities of email deliverability, performed rigorous testing and learned to achieve remarkable results. Now, he specializes in helping companies fix their email deliverability, avoid the spam folder and boost their email ROI.

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