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Stay Off the Naughty List: Common Spam Phrases to Avoid in Your Holiday Emails

Stay Off the Naughty List: Common Spam Phrases to Avoid in Your Holiday Emails

Email marketing is a critical component to any holiday campaign. Whether you’re delivering coupons to your customers, alerting them to your holiday hours, or giving them product recommendations with a gift guide, well-planned emails are valuable to you and your audience.

Even the best-laid plans, though, often go awry.

You may be surprised to find that some of your emails aren’t even landing in your customers’ inboxes this holiday season. Instead, they are getting caught in the ever-tightening mesh of spam filters. At this point, we all know that words like “free” and “buy” are common spam keywords that can get you sent to the spam folder wasteland. Astoundingly, even “visit our website” can get you flagged as being needy, shady, or manipulative, by spam filter standards.

To help you make the most of this critical Q4 conversion period, we’ve put together a list of common, seemingly innocuous phrases that we inadvertently lean on in our email marketing that may actually be working against us this holiday shopping season. Check it out:

spam words list

Are any of these phrases in your holiday marketing campaigns? Some spam keywords and phrases trigger spam filters without fail, while others can be passable on occasion. There is no hard and fast list of spam phrases to avoid to ensure total deliverability, but with a little research and strategic editing to your email copy, you can make the valuable connections with your customers that we all look forward to this time of year!

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Creative Director/Senior Designer

Tom DiGrazia

With over a decade and a half of professional design experience, Tom brings his knowledge of design principles and focus on user experience to every aspect of his contribution to TTG. Paying special attention to each client’s brand, personalized needs and individual interests, he strives to create compelling concepts utilizing intuitive and highly-refined design solutions. In addition to traditional and digital design work and oversight at TTG, Tom also boasts a wide portfolio of web development projects with the company, allowing him to stretch his CSS and HTML skills across multiple platforms and disciplines. He feels that being a designer in the digital landscape of websites, eCommerce solutions, email marketing platforms and social media, it is important to understand the code that goes into these areas as it assists his ability to tailor designs specifically targeted to achieve the best end result and further builds understanding and communication with backend development teams.

In his off hours, Tom is an avid pop culture enthusiast, staying up to date on the latest shows, films, comics and games. He can also typically be found taking part in a whole host of artistic activities that help him further stretch his creative legs. Regardless of the activity, Tom is always accompanied by his dog, Eli, and his cat, Tib.

Design, Photography, Illustration, Digital Imagery Manipulation, Wesbite Development

Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Lightroom, HTML/CSS, Wordpress


Courtney Dumont

As Senior Marketing Strategist & Analyst at Technology Therapy Group, Courtney is energized by the ability to flex both her left and right brain daily. Courtney discovered her passion for Marketing at Bryant University, where she spearheaded research on students’ perceptions of Social Media Marketing for her Honors Capstone Project. After graduating Bryant in 2012, she joined the Technology Therapy team, where she’s honed her skills in social media, search and social advertising, email marketing, SEO, and more.

Since joining the team, Courtney has created digital marketing strategies and managed campaigns for clients across the country, ranging from plastic surgery centers, to jewelry stores, to construction companies. With a cohesive, cross-channel approach and a focus on data-driven decision making, she has increased their leads by up to 217%. But Courtney doesn’t leave her zeal for social media at the office; she also runs a local foodie Instagram account with her husband to document their meals across Rhode Island and beyond. Check them out: @hoppilyfed.

Marketing Strategy, Data Analysis, Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Social Media

Google Analytics, Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Facebook Creator Studio, Instagram, Klaviyo, Mailchimp, Emma Mail, Google Data Studio, WordPress, YouTube, LinkedIn, Facebook, Microsoft Office