A Healthy Ride to Wealth

Email Marketing 2024: Achieving Compliance – Part 1

Hey guys!

Remember the milestone 2 of my business plan (see “Will I Reach My Goal“, July 9th)? I needed to change quite a few things there.

This took me a considerable amount of time and efforts to achieve everything because, first, I made mistakes (see “I Received a Tap on the Wrist“) and second, I had to actively revise the logistic around my blog and rework my email marketing system, sales funnel, and future email list to adapt for an important industry shift.

Near the end of that same post I made some allusions about this important change and now here it is, knocking at the door.

The big change

In October 2023, Google (GMAIL) and Yahoo came together with new email sender requirements, enforcement taking effect from February 2024 onward.

By the way, this is NOW!

Senders who don’t comply with the new requirements will start to see issues getting their emails delivered.

Clearly, if both of these internet leaders are taking this pathway, we can assume that others will follow the trend too.

Based on Marcel Becker, Sr Director Product Management at Yahoo, the mission is to deliver messages that consumers want to receive and filter out the messages they don’t.

Ultimately, it is a fight against SPAM, with the objective of ensuring a safer and more secure email environment for users.

Personally I think it’s a good thing.

Nonetheless, this will have a huge impact for affiliate and other marketers that use this channel to communicate with their audience.

You don’t have to go very far before you realize that this will directly affect the way we do business.

Well, it looks like it’s going to be a major struggle for everyone. My special thoughts go to affiliate marketers having big mailing lists.

But fear not my friend, here I can help.

First, let’s take a look at the basic key requirements that apply directly to all senders:

  • Senders have to authenticate their email implementing industry standards such as SPF, DKIM, and DMARC;
  • Enable Easy Unsubscription in one click and honor users’ requests within two days;
  • Only send emails that users want reducing and maintaining a SPAM complaint rate below 0.3%;

Most of the requirements are technical and thus, talks more to programmers than the general users. Listed above only those rules upon which email senders have direct power to take immediate action. One that will likely cause the most problems is the inbox users’ complaint rate we’ll have to keep below the 0.3% threshold (aiming at 0.1%).

Clearly, this is not actually near everyone’s range.

The common inbox user being understandably largely impatient and easily overwhelmed by emails coming from everywhere, the little button “report SPAM” is too often easily clicked.

With this, we are also forced to admit that many emails remain unopened in most of our inboxes when they are not simply redirected to the junk folder.

This is now a real issue.

Yahoo and Google are clear about this. No more bulk email sent to unknown users!

Between the lines, it means that email service providers will track and hold a sort of “score” for your reputation. This reputation will ultimately dictate what happens with your emails when you send them to your subscribers’ inboxes.

As we said, “money is in the list”.

You want your email communication to be the most efficient possible.

Sending an email becomes a privilege and you don’t want, as an affiliate marketer, to lose this privilege.

As a consequence, emails senders will have no choice than to protect their domain’s reputation by ensuring to send emails to the right people, those that are likely to open your emails and read them.

So how all this will apply to me? Continue to read.

The Beginners Advantage Program

Fortunately I’m not alone to figure out what I need to do.

I have the chance to count on the expertise of my mentor Dean Holland which did a great job preparing everything in order that we, his partners and member of the Beginners Advantage Program, we get the smoothest transition possible and accelerate our business forward taking advantage of our beginners’ momentum.

This initiative came in handy.

This is what I call being at the right place at the right time!

Let me explain why.

The traditional way

The traditional way of doing email marketing is something similar to this:

  • get traffic (an audience),
  • get them on an email list,
  • sell them stuff they want ASAP.

Inbox’s users respond more or less using a “buy or unsubscribe” approach, thus the necessity to close a sale rapidly.

This is not surprising in a “on-demand”, “want it NOW“, economy where we have access to everything we want at finger tips just by touching our mobile phone. Big companies like Amazon are at the fore front of this marketing trend.

To meet with this behavior, today most marketer’s follow-up is centered around making offers until people unsubscribe, or report as SPAM. This inevitably results in a lack of content preferring to make place for “asking” instead of “giving”.

The New Way

But times are changing.

People will always want results as fast as possible, in the easiest possible way. The “on-demand” economy will not be reversed.

However, human beings do have and will always crave human connection.

It’s thus our role to become someone that our audience will connect with. We can no longer play by the old rules.

It’s time to adapt and embrace these new times. Those that fail to adapt will fail to ever reach their goals.

And you know what?

Beginners have no old rules to get rid of.

Considering beginners don’t have any email list yet, they start from scratch. For us beginners, this is a real advantage because we don’t have any existing lists to clean, adapt, and transform to meet with the new requirements.

In the eye of those email providers, our domain name is clean from any complaints!

We start building our list directly as per the new rules.

That’s the Beginners Advantage.

This program was setup by Dean for a privileged group of willing partners in order to teach them how to adapt their affiliate marketing strategy to the new way of working.

Luckily, I’m proud to say that I’m also part of that group, so I can account for that.

The “Affiliate System” Online Platform

But Dean’s initiative wasn’t limited to just preparing a program and coaching lessons…

In order to face the change imposed by the industry, new software tools were also necessary.

To respond to this need and position itself as a leader in this market, Dean created “Affiliate System“, an all-in-one online platform that provides everything we need as an affiliate marketer, from websites hosting with increased security, to email marketing tools with automated workflows.

In a nutshell, that’s everything we need at one place to do our affiliate marketing tasks faster and more effectively. This platform became the command center for all my business needs.

Coaching sessions also are preparing ourselves, partners, to develop new skills on this platform, so we could have some steps ahead when time will come to make the official release of the Affiliate System product such that other marketers could benefit from it too.

More about that later.

The “FANS” strategy

I was told by my mentor to aim at a complaint rate at 1 per 1000 emails (0.1%) or lower with each email provider to keep my emails out of SPAM.

Once a complaint rate of 3 per 1000 emails is detected at GMAIL for example, my emails can be rejected from their network entirely, which means I can’t make any money.

What will I have to do to send emails that are most likely being opened and read?

How will I succeed in having no complaints?


I need to build a list of true FANS!

FANs are the opposite of strangers.

They are people that know and like you, follow you, and with time, they will trust you. You nurture a relationship with them.

At the other end, strangers are less likely to pay attention to you. Strangers are less likely to grow your email list.

In fact, they are more likely to report your emails as SPAM.

Having an email list built only with strangers won’t let me go very far… However a list of only true FANs will make me fly!

This means I’m not going to see explosive results overnight!

I’m not going to have an “ego-inflating” big list.

Nothing of these at all!

I know this may seems disappointing to some. Think that you have to allow for the process to play.

Like Alex Jeffrey once said to my mentor Dean Holland: “You have to think get rich forever, not get rich quick”.

Focus on the process and results will pay.

The Process

If you’ve been working in the industry of affiliate marketing since quite a long time, there are certainly some bad habits, and way of doing things that you will have to change regarding the aspects of emailing to your subscribers. If you are new to affiliate marketing like I am, then start on the right foot with the following recommendations.

No longer do these things

Building a list of FANs will help you meet most of the new requirements while maintaining your reputation under the radar of the email system providers. To do this, one will have to avoid:

  1. Import unengaged lists of subscribers into your email system

If you already have an email list somewhere and you want to bring it inside your new email system think twice.

You don’t want to turn-on the autoresponder and start sending emails without having done some clean-up before.

If you have a relatively large amount of non-engaging subscribers on your list you may find yourself in trouble. The danger here is to increase the SPAM rate, email bouncing or unopened email.

The email provider will rapidly be advised that your behavior is detrimental to their platform so they are going to restrict you from sending any emails and you will lose money.

Keep your list as clean as possible before importing it.

  1. Send mass email with your new sending domain

Imagine you have a new domain with no reputation yet.

Then you start emailing a massive quantity of emails, what do you think the email inbox provider will think of this?

Chances are that he flags you as a possible spammer and block everything right?

You don’t really want to be black listed straight from the start don’t you?

So, at least for the time you are “warming-up” your email domain reputation, take it easy. Sending mass emails from a new domain might immediately ruin your reputation and can lead to you being tagged as a spammer by email authorities.

Instead, secure and establish your reputation by properly warming-up your domain name. Fix a quota like sending no more than 30 emails per week.

  1. Drive solo ad traffic to opt into your email system

You may be able to bring persons on your email list quickly and easily by driving solo ads but they are likely complete strangers and you don’t want this.

You don’t want to bring too many people at once on your mailing list because this is not “warm” traffic. Those people don’t even know who you are.

In fact, any method that let you bring leads traffic before it let them know who you are should be avoided.

Build your list slowly and gradually by bringing FANs on it, not strangers.

  1. Keep emailing people that are not engaging

The effect will be to increase the number of unopened emails hence affecting negatively your reputation.

Instead, you want to remove from your list these people if they don’t open your emails in, let say, about 90 days.

It is better to not having them than having them and they are not opening your emails anyway. This doesn’t make any difference right?

Ensure that people are real and engaging people. Ensure your email reach someone, and that people open your emails, and read them. I use a double optin form system presenting my leads with a second confirmation email, where they have to click a link to confirm they really want to be on my list and to receive my emails.

  1. Using SPAM trigger words in your emails communications

Increase your chances for your emails of not going into the SPAM folder by avoiding any kind of known spam words like “Money”, Online Income”, “FREE”, etc.

Make a search for “SPAM words” or “SPAM Triggered Words” in a search engine, you will find there a lot of articles about words that are susceptible to cause your email to go into the SPAM or JUNK inbox folder.

  1. Ignore replies from subscribers

Sometimes subscribers could reply to your email.

Don’t ignore them.

Ideally you want your system to tell you that you have received a reply. Take the time to answer. Remember you want to establish and nurture a relationship with your subscribers for them to know you, like you, and trust you.

Applying the process- The Machine that make FANS (and Money!)

I think by now you understand the concept. You know that you need a list of FANs, that is, only people that like you and that are looking forward to open and read your emails.

Up to now, I didn’t reveal clearly what is the mechanic I implemented and that allows me to realize that.

The “Fans making” machine

So here is how it works.

Like you know, I started a blog where I bring traffic to. This is my own asset.

On this blog I post every weeks relevant content for people willing to know more about affiliate marketing and how they could start an online business if they decide to do so.

On my blog, I can of course make offers, put lots of banners here and there, but the most important is to post content that is valuable for the people interested in the topic I’m presenting.

Now people on my blog that are interested to receive more value content can optin with their email address to receive my newsletter “A Healthy Ride to Wealth”.

I was recommended by my mentor to chose a double-optin funnel system to get subscribers, presenting my leads with a second confirmation email, where they have to click a link to confirm they really want to be on my list and to receive my emails. With this technique, I hope to get better quality subscribers, that is, people more interested in my topic.

Here the lead magnet principle with the “bribe” remains the same; I give gifts to all serious subscribers that click my lead magnet banner and decide to optin on the pop-up form. Those gifts are digital products made by Dean Holland and that have a sure value for them.

Once a subscriber is on my mailing list, he will be informed every time I release a new post. In this way, I bring subscribers back again to my blog.

The more of my content they consume, the more they learn to know me, like me, trust me.

I don’t want to present product offers in my firsts newsletters.

The most important in this part of the process right now is to build and nurture a relationship with my audience. I want to build a relationship using an approach that looks more like this:


instead of a form of content that asks more often than it gives.

My subscribers must be warmed long enough before I make an offer. Building trust prior to that is of highest importance.

Well, here above I described the core of my business, what I call my FAN’s making machine.

Will it works? I will tell you in the next weeks, but for now, let’s give it a try.

Now that all is in place, remains bringing traffic to my blog and getting people on my list. This is where I go for milestone 3 (see “Will I Reach My Goal“).

Time will come when eventually the process will pay but let be patient. Too often we forget things or just fly over details because we want to go fast, only to realize we need to go back some steps to learn the important detail we didn’t get.

I will explain in my next post what I have done to meet the other, more technical requirements. Of course, you will want to be there!

Get on my list and don’t miss anything.

Like always you can leave a comment below.

Have a good day!





22 Responses to “Email Marketing 2024: Achieving Compliance – Part 1”

  1. Nakina Lawson Avatar

    Hi, Martin! This is a very informative post. I like your description of the need to give-give-give-ask-give-give-give-ask. Too often, I visit blogs with so many ads that it’s hard to read the content. I like that your focus is on giving value to your fans. You certainly did that today!

    1. Martin Lefebvre Avatar

      Right! I’m happy you say that! Some blog are cluttered with so many ads that it is difficult to read them, especially on a cell phone! I think keep it simple and concentrate on giving value. Those blogs didn’t have the right coaching. 😉


  2. Alison Blaire Avatar

    Hi Martin, this is a wonderful breakdown of the new rules. This really is a new world of affiliate marketing, and it is going to be an adjustment for all of us. I think it is really important, and I am so glad you mentioned avoiding “SPAM words.” I appreciate this tip and love the way your blog is organized; its easy to follow and very informative. Look forward to your next post!

    1. Martin Lefebvre Avatar

      Thank you Alison, I appreciate you like the blog and the information I give. Affiliate marketers have to adapt to these new rules so I think it’s important to understand what they are and prevent the consequences.

  3. tony simms Avatar

    That very nicely sums up both the problem and the solution. For me, in my online business, the focus is on Valuable Content, for the very reason you state… I want a fan base that loves all the stuff I provide for free so that when I offer a paid option they know it will be worth what is being asked.

    Thnks for setting things out so clearly.

    1. Martin Lefebvre Avatar

      No Problem Tony. Very glad you found there useful information. Build it and they will come!

  4. Lauren Millman Avatar

    Martin, this is an excellent detailed breakdown of the new email marketing rules! I have recently heard about them myself but I can appreciate you diving into more depth about what some of these rules actually mean (and how to prevent getting in “trouble.”) Thank you for putting this together!

    1. Martin Lefebvre Avatar

      My pleasure Lauren! I try to document what I’m doing and how. I thought this would have been of interest because it took a lot of place in my business since fall while I had to restructure and re-think how to adapt. Be there on part 2! 😊

  5. Sasha Avatar

    Hi Martin! Thank you for sharing such informative and useful content. Email marketing is crucial in the affiliate marketing business, and I’ve heard that a good opening rate should be above 20%. Is this information still accurate?

    1. Martin Lefebvre Avatar

      Hello Sasha, Thank you for your comment. The 20% is more or less the average for most industries. So I think that if you meet the average, it is a good sign that your emails are being opened. Of course this stays valid for 2024 as well. You can read more on this here: https://www.omnisend.com/blog/email-open-rate/
      Have a nice day!

  6. Marc Avatar

    Hi Martin,
    After reading your blog – I’m definitely a fan!
    You are right, many of the old guards that have thousands upon thousands of email addresses that are not whatsoever engaged with them will most likely find this turn of events hard to swallow.
    Like you, I’m pretty happy with this business decision; however, I’m sure that as quickly as this is being implemented, spammers out there are trying to find a way around it. (That’s me being a realist and not so much a pessimist LOL).
    Looking forward to reading your continued posts.
    All the best!

    1. Martin Lefebvre Avatar

      Hehe, this means my fans machine has started producing! Regarding spammers, no system is perfect, and on this point yes I’m realist too that they will find some ways around. However they will now find hurdles they would rather like not to have.
      Thank you Marc!

  7. Sandy Avatar

    Great post Martin,
    You really give so much helpful information. I like the way you put in about give-give-give-ask-give-give-give-ask on building relationships. I receive so much spam buy-buy-buy..

    Keep these coming, I find them so helpful.

    Thanks Sandy

    1. Martin Lefebvre Avatar

      Hey Sandy, Thank you! Give more than you take and get much more.

  8. Atif Perwiz Avatar

    Martin, thanks so much for all the really valuable information within this blog. You’ve given everything everyone needs to know about the switch in the email rules and what to do. It’s almost like you’ve created a reference document for people to come back to again and again just to refresh their memory of what changing. Thank you so much. It was very useful. Thanks, Atif

    1. Martin Lefebvre Avatar

      Hey Atif, I hope one day I’ll become a reference. 😁


  9. Eleanor Hope Avatar

    ah yes, I am a true fan! You have provided an in-depth view of several important topics! – which could be several individual posts. My favorite is the reminder of human connection as this is a scarcity in many types of businesses.

    1. Martin Lefebvre Avatar

      Indeed that build up a long post. I didn’t want to extend too much the subject on several weeks, part 2 next week will close the topic. I got so plenty of other things to tell and document.
      Thank you Eleanor,

  10. jon bowman Avatar

    Hello Martin, this is definitely an important issue we will have to address correctly from now on. I personally think it is going to do away with the people who do not want to show some sort of personalization with their audience, in which case should be a big help to those not just out for easy money. I look forward to your future posts, have a great week ahead!

    1. Martin Lefebvre Avatar

      Hey Jon, thank you for your comment! Right, this should help truly those having a real business to grow.

  11. Sherri S Pulcino Avatar

    Such an awesome post packed with valuable info! The insights into the new email rules were particularly enlightening because, let’s face it, we all need to keep up with these changes. And that “give-give-give-ask-give-give” concept? Love it! Can’t wait for your next post.

    1. Martin Lefebvre Avatar

      Give more place to content than to ask with your offers. Same thing applies to blogging. Some blog are so crowded with ads and offers that you lose the path of your reading. Keep it simple and make place for value and engaging content. Thank you Sherri!

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