We are going to send huge bulk emails (It's an invitation to our site). I setup an instance on Amazon and installed zimbra on that along with phplist which is configured. DKIM and Domain keys are setup.

I am afraid my IP will be blocked by spam blockers so is there any way that I can tell them my IP address and they do not block my ip. Our emails are not spam but it will be millions of emails and sender is also so huge so I can could not subscribe to mailchimp like service, its becomes very expensive.

Email will be also sent to gmail, yahoo, hotmail and AOL. I need some way to tell spamblockers service providers that they do not block my IP. for example to the following spam blockers.

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    Just one hint: If you sent mail to just a single address who has not consented to receive this stuff, you are sending spam. – Sven May 7 '12 at 7:21
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    Just image how useless blacklists and spam filtering services would be if one could just request that their particular system not get listed or blocked. Dream on! – John Gardeniers May 7 '12 at 9:12

It's not your decision as to whether or not your emails get blocked as spam, because spammers would use the same mechanism to say "Our messages aren't spam either, honest, all these people asked for penis extension pill information, really they did, even that 11 year old boy and that 88 year old woman, honest!".

There are essentially 3 reasons why a message might get identified as spam, and you need to look into all of these if you're not using an established bulk email service:

  1. "It looks like spam" - some emails contain certain phrases that trigger anti-spam software that looks at the content of messages. You need to make sure your emails don't contain any (or at least, too many) of these triggers. Not that you'll find a published list anywhere. Also there are various things (DKIM, etc) that are important for senders of bulk email, and not having these or having them set up wrongly will increase your chances of having automated filters classing your emails as spam. You mention that you've taken care of the technology side of things here, which is great, but I think ultimately futile because of my 2nd reason.

  2. "It comes from a spam haven" - some IP addresses are listed either because of a past history of spam, or because the owner of those IP addresses doesn't have a good history when it comes to dealing with spammers, or because those email addresses shouldn't actually be sending email in the first place (e.g. dynamic IP ranges for ISPs, highly volatile ranges related to cloud providers whose providence its not possible to guarantee).

  3. "It tastes like spam" - Lots of people say "I didn't ask for this!" and click the spam button / move it to the junk mail folder on their client, leading their provider to block any further messages. This is a real issue if you send to end users who are using webmail providers, because that can represent a lot of users, especially as many ISPs buy cloud email services for their customers from the likes of gmail, hotmail or yahoo these days.

There's a reason why Mail Chimp and similar services are expensive, and it isn't just because their owners like lighting cigars with ten dollar bills.

  • Thank you for all your answers, that help me alot to conclude to some decision. I will setup mailchimp as a backup, as in case our IP is blocked we will switch over to mailchimp. – Toqeer May 8 '12 at 4:59

There is no way that you can send millions of emails from an Amazon instance and not have a majority of them blocked by most email systems. Amazon IP ranges are perma-banned on many black lists as well as directly on many major email provider networks, inlcuding ISPs and the major webmail providers like Gmail and Yahoo.

You will be better served by using a service that is specifically set up to handle outbound bulk email, such as MailChimp or SendGrid. If you attempt to do this on your own, you'll need to get a clean IP address and you'll also better be served by an application or appliance that is intended to be sending out millions of messages safely. For example, the Cisco Ironport 370D.


You're doomed. Use {major outbound mail provider}

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    Agreed. MailChimp makes it so easy and cheap, there's no reason not to use them. – EEAA May 7 '12 at 8:51
  • For 25000 subscribers, MailChimp charge $240/Month and we have more then that. I think it becomes so expensive. Thank you David for your response, I will find a way to send emails safely. – Toqeer May 9 '12 at 12:31

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