Email Campaign Rules and Tips

Our goal is for your email blast to have the best results possible. We use a trusted 3rd Party email program to send email campaigns for union members. An Appletree MediaWorks staff member will test your email for deliverability and let you know if it can be sent as is, or if the email server will refuse to send it due to a high spam score. If blocked, you will need to make edits to your email campaign before it can go out.  Spam filters and server rules are constantly evolving, the most common tips for success are below.

Tips to Improve Email Deliverability

  1. Don’t Include Images with Text. Email clients cannot read text in images and often will block the email as spam. Use images to compliment your email content, not to be your entire message. Use mainly text for the body of your message.
  2. Use More Text and Less Images. If your email message has many images and little to no text it is likely to be marked as spam. A good ratio is 2/3 text and 1/3 images. Keep in mind many email programs block images from being shown by default.
  3. Tell a User Where They are Going. Links should state exactly where a user is going to be sent, don’t use “Click Here” or “Visit Facebook”. Tell users exactly where a link leads to; such as “Visit Our Website at” instead of just “Click Here to Visit Our Website”.
  4. Watch Your Subject Lines. If your subject line has spammy words in it (like free, discount, guarantee, etc.) or is all uppercase then it creates a false sense of urgency and is common with fraudulent emails. Instead consider what subject lines inspire you to open an email.
  5. Don’t Send from a Free Email Account. Sending from a free account (e.g. Gmail, Yahoo) has a negligible impact. These email address types are common among fraudulent emails. An option is using a paid email service with a good spam reputation and proper DNS settings.
  6. Sending Duplicate Emails. Avoid copying a sent email and sending it again to the same contact list with unchanged content and the same subject line as the first email. At a minimum change the subject line.

Ways to Create Your Email

  1. Build Your Email in Word or Pages: Keep it simple; insert one or two images with pictures that drive your point home and add text for at least 2/3 of the email. We will do our best to match your fonts and formatting in the email editing program, but please know your email may still appear different on different email browsers.
  2. Use an Email Template Builder: Ensure that the template builder will let you export the HTML code and images to be sent to Appletree MediaWorks. This will allow you to have nicer formatted email. A free program that does this well is: Other email guidelines should still be followed.

Keep in mind results vary because every email user and their ISP have different rules, filters and AI learning that influence who receives and opens your email. For more information on sending emails use a search engine to find “tips for email campaigns”.

HTML Email Blast FAQ

We’re happy to provide HTML Email Services for organizations and their members.  We’ve developed this FAQ specifically for our election email campaigns. If you’ve reached this page in error, but are looking for an organization to provide this union service to your membership, we would be happy to provide more information about our services and expertise.

Q: How do I get started?

A: You’ll need to get some things together for your email.

  1. First, gather the text and images you want in your email. We can work with all sorts of file formats including: .html, .pages, word, open office, jpeg, and gif. You may optionally send an email of just text and picture(s), or you can send out an HTML email that you’ve coded. (One free program to write the code can be found at: There is an extra charge if you’d like our staff to write the HTML code for your email based on a mock-up you’ve created.
  2. Then have a friend quality check what you’ve created. Our staff can’t point out typos in your content and it is time consuming on both ends to make corrections after an email has already been drafted.
  3. Choose:
    • Your “Subject Line”
    • Your “From Name”
    • Your “From Email Address”
    • Your “Reply-To Email Address”
    • What “Address, City, State and Zip Code” will display at the bottom of your email. *The CAN-SPAM Act requires that your email message must include a valid physical postal address.
  4. Decide on a good date and time you’d like your email to be scheduled for sending. Remember that we need up to 48 hours to draft an email test, run it through initial spam checks and send an email test back to you for review and approval, so early notice is best. Don’t forget to let us know what time zone you’re referring to as well.
  5. Email your content, images, and the details listed above to We’ll contact you as quickly as possible during normal business hours to let you know we’ve received your materials. At that time we will request any missing details. You may also call or text Katie at (810) 444-4080 with questions.
  6. Allow up to 48 hours for a “test” email to be drafted and sent back to you for review. At that time you’ll also receive a PayPal Invoice for your campaign – you can pay this online via PayPal or Credit Card.
  7. Let us know of any edits to the “test” email you received from us or if it is approved. If you have edits we’ll acknowledge we’ve received them and send you back another “test” email for review until you approve the email.
  8. You will receive a statistics report 24 hours after your email campaign has been sent.

Q: Does every candidate get to use the same email list?

Yes, we start with the email address list provided to us by the organization at the beginning of the election process. That same email address list is loaded into the Email Campaign program for EACH candidate. Recipients have the option to unsubscribe from EACH candidate individually. This does not remove them from any other candidate’s list. If a candidate sends a second email campaign, anyone who unsubscribed from the first email from that candidate will not receive the second email from that candidate.

Appletree MediaWorks cannot and will not release the email lists provided to us by the union to candidates or unnecessary 3rd parties before, during or after elections. All questions about email lists should be directed to your local board of elections. 

Q: How will I know if people received my email campaign?

We will provide you with a PDF report 24 hours after your email is sent out. This report will include:

  • The total number of email addresses that your email campaign was sent to.
  • The number of emails that were opened.
  • The number of emails that were NOT opened.
  • The number of recipients who clicked on links in your email.

The report does NOT include which email addresses opened/did not open your email.

Q: Can I send a 2nd Email Campaign?

Yes, you can. You can change your content or use the same content. The cost is the same as your first email campaign. Keep in mind that anyone who Unsubscribed from your first email, will remain Unsubscribed from your list and will not receive your second email, per the CAN-SPAM Act.

Q: When should I send you my email information?

The sooner the better. We need 24 hours to draft your “test” email for you to review. You’ll likely want time to have it proof-read by a friend or colleague before it goes out. You can tell us what day and time (including time zone) you want your email to send and we’ll get it scheduled in the system to be sent after you give us final approval.

Q: Can you filter my email to only send to certain bases (if applicable)?

Yes, we can filter email addresses by base, we’ll just need to know which base(s) you’d like the email sent to. There is no extra charge or discounts for sending to specific bases.

Q: Can you prevent my email from sending to certain members (IE: my competition)?

Yes and No… Not every member has an email address on file with the union AND not every member goes by a name you may know them by in the membership database. **There is an extra hourly fee for this service as it is time consuming to filter emails** If you’re interested in this service you’ll need to provide us with the union members first and last name. We can provide you with a final number of how many email addresses are being sent to, but we can’t tell you WHO exactly we were able to match the name to for removal.

Q: Can you tell me who else is sending out an email with your company? Or when they’re sending out their email?

No, we are only allowed to communicate email campaign information to the person sending out the email and to the Board of Election.

Q: How come my friend received an email from one candidate but not another?

Every email from each candidate is sent to the same email list provided to us by the Board of Election. There are many external factors which may affect whether or not a given email reaches its final destination. For example, email clients each use their own algorithms for deciding whether or not to allow an email into the inbox. These rules can vary widely between individual accounts and providers. Some email users also employ their own custom rules to weed out emails they suspect are unwanted. Often, even when the email is received, people simply don’t remember which candidate emails they opened or not so they may report that they didn’t receive it when they actually did.

Q: What’s the best way to get results from my email campaign?

There isn’t a “magic bullet” solution that works in every situation. We recommend you use a search engine to research and employ the best strategies for your specific campaign. There is a wealth of information freely available on successful HTML email campaigns.

Q: Are Appletree MediaWorks staff union members?

Yes, we are proud union members of Graphic Communications Conference/International Brotherhood of Teamsters (GCC/IBT) Local 508-M. We’ve been serving our brothers & sisters for over 20 years.

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