FanBridge Blog

Your go-to source for smart fan marketing


This October 31st, protect yourself against one of the biggest pitfalls of HalloweEmail Marketing: spam traps!

Spam Traps

What is a spam trap? These are email addresses that are not meant for receiving emails. And if they are sent to, this tells inbox providers and blacklist managers that the sender is not using best practices for building or maintaining a good email list. This can negatively impact your sender reputation in a big way, because then these email delivery gatekeepers will think twice before delivering your emails to legitimate inboxes.

But not all spam traps are created equal. Here are two common types of traps: pristine and recycled.

Pristine Spam Traps

Pristine Spam Traps are email addresses that are created by blacklist providers. They look just like regular email addresses, but they are never used for joining lists or other online activity. They have never been used by a person, but don’t let that fool you; that inbox is not going unchecked.


Since these addresses will never be used for subscribing to any list, if that inbox gets mail, that signals something is wrong; and sending email to that inbox can tell blacklists that you are not following proper opt-in methods. Meaning, you’ll be fending for your reputation (email sender reputation, that is).


How to Fend Off Pristine Spam Traps

Avoid list sharing, purchasing a list, or scraping addresses to add as subscribers. Again, pristine spam traps are designed to look just like any other email address, so you won’t be able to tell which address is good just from looking at it. And if you purchase a list or take a list from someone else, they can’t tell the difference either. Even more difficult, if you do send to a pristine spam trap, you won’t be able to know that you did. The identity of these email addresses is kept secret to maintain the integrity of the trap. Better to rely on signup forms, your Fan Action Page, or web plugins to collect legitimate emails.

Recycled Spam Traps

Recycled Spam Traps are email addresses that once existed as legitimate email addresses created by a person for the purpose of receiving emails. But now, the address has been dead and has been dead for a while (usually more than a year). These addresses are prime candidates for the inbox provider to revive, not as a valid inbox, but as a type of spam trap.

How to Fend Off Recycled Spam Traps

Where fighting off pristine spam traps means not doing something, the issue of recycled spam traps requires taking some action, because they are coming from… inside the list!

If you have been building and maintaining a list for a long time, then you might want to look into your fans that have been dormant for a while. We recommend sending an occasional Win Back Campaign. And in FanBridge, you can target your Undefined Fans that have been on your list for a long time to make sure you are targeting the likely culprits of who might be a recycled spam trap. Having good list hygiene will protect you from sending to recycled spam traps and warding against a blacklist from email providers.


Team FanBridge

Besides discovering where your fans are, we understand there’s an importance to knowing WHO your fans are. So we want to kickstart your data collection efforts and gain a stronger understanding of your fans by helping you collect their social profiles.

How to collect: It helps to collect fan info gradually over time as they may not be open to doing so immediately and all at once. One way to collect fan social handles is through Tweet For a Track. With Tweet For a Track, fans can access a free download just by providing a simple retweet.

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If you’re looking for more than Twitter handles, try sending a campaign during slow times to ask fans to update their subscriber info and provide social accounts. As a reward, give them a quick shout out or follow them back.

We’ve got more ways to collect this info in the works. But don’t just wait around, get started on collecting that info today!

Team FanBridge

Like anyone needing to market themselves online, there’s probably a million questions about engagement on your mind. Well we’ve come up with a list of articles we’ve done in the past that should hopefully answer any questions you have on engagement for social or email campaigns


What is Engagement? – Clicks? Likes? Comments? What does engagement really mean?

What is a Good Engagement Rate? – Once you understand engagement, how do you know you’re receiving enough?

What is a Good Open Rate? – Discover the industry standard for email open rates and how to improve your metrics

Visual Strategies to Boost Engagement – See how adding images to your content can help improve social/email engagement

5 Major Takeaways on Fan Engagement – A few crucial lessons we’ve learned from our experience with garnering fan engagement

5 Tips to Increase Your Email Engagement Rate – Keep fans interested with 5 simple strategies for improving email engagement

6 Ways to Connect With Your Audience at Events – Engagement isn’t just for email & social media. Bond with fans face to face with these 6 tips.

4 Simple Ways to Engage Your Social Media Audience – Learn 4 easy fundamentals on connecting with your audience on social media

After the Contest: Getting Value from Social Media Contests – Maintain audience momentum after a social contest while building up your fan base with a few helpful tips

13 Ways Not to Build a Fan Base – Establishing an audience from scratch? Then you may want to avoid these “techniques”.

Creating Effective Calls to Action in Email Campaigns – A strong call to action could be just the push fans need to engage your campaigns

Why Bands Should Be On Pinterest – “But Pinterest is for nothing but home decor ideas, right?” Wrong. It could be your next channel for engaging fans.

Turn Facebook Likes into Engaged Fans – Industry experts weigh in on ways to convert Facebook likes into an active audience

Guest Series: Fan Engagement/Monetization – After a fan joins your list, when is a good time to start selling?

Fan Engagement: What Should Artists Do to Excite Inactive Fans? – Worried your audience is losing interest? We asked a few experts for ways to win back fans.

How Do You Tell If An Artist Has a Loyal/Engaged Fan Base? – What metrics or fan behaviors should artists focus on to determine fan loyalty?


Still not too confident in your fan engagement skills? Subscribe to our mailing list to stay updated on any tips and tricks for engaging your fans.


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