E-Mail Marketing History
Since that fateful day in late November or early December of 1971 when Ray Tomlinson sent the first email using a ARPANET (the predecessor of what we know as the Internet today), email has changed…a lot.
The email that Ray Tomlinson sent was sent to himself. It has been reported that the message was “QWERTYUIOP” but he says that it was more likely to have been „testing 1 2 3 4”. It might have been the first email sent and possibly the last one that wasn’t a marketing email.
Not really, of course but email is the primary communication choice of individuals and businesses world wide.
It became too popular for its own good. Everybody who had anything at all to sell or any message they wanted to promote discovered mass marketing email. Soon inboxes all over the world were overflowing with unsolicited marketing emails which came to be called SPAM.
In 2003 the problem of SPAM had become so big and so intrusive that the Congress of the Untied States passed the CAN-SPAM Act.
The CAN-SPAM Act defines SPAM as unsolicited bulk email. Bulk email isn’t SPAM and neither is unsolicited email. To meet the definition requirements of SPAM in the CAN-SPAM Act, email must be both bulk and unsolicited.
The CAN-SPAM Act made it illegal for businesses to send bulk marketing emails to people who had not agreed to receive them.
The opt-in list was born of the necessity to gain that agreement. The opt-in list is the backbone of email marketing today and opt-in list building techniques are possibly the most discussed subject among affiliate marketers.