homepage Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from
register, free tools, login, search, pro membership, help, library, announcements, recent posts, open posts,
Become a Pro Member
Home / Forums Index / WebmasterWorld / Webmaster General
Forum Library, Charter, Moderators: phranque

Webmaster General Forum

sending out 1 million emails in one go

 7:07 pm on Sep 12, 2006 (gmt 0)


I have a client that wants to send out 1 million personalized (firstname, lastname) emails in one go.

what problems do you think I might have doing this?

I know there are companies out there that offer this service,
but the client insists the data is kept on a server
that they control plus they need it to all go out in
one go, so spreading it out over a few weeks or a week is not
an option.

has anyone ever done this?



 7:25 pm on Sep 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

There might be legal implications; are they all opt-in?


 7:27 pm on Sep 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

You must throttle the email frequency so that they do not bombard the mail servers at major ISPs -- or else there can be major spam blacklisting repurcussions for the mail server used. Keeping a mail server white-listed is a big job, even a specialist's job. That's how the third party services earn their keep.

1 million emails is not a good place to start in on this learning curve, IMO. I've never sent out that many emails in one campaign, but even at a lower level and using well vetted double opt-in lists, I've had my share of troubles.


 7:27 pm on Sep 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

yep it's not spam, it's for a national company. and everything is legit.


 7:39 pm on Sep 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

thanks Tedster, it's a one off campaign so i dont mind ditching a mail server if i have too. not sure a hosting company would like me tho.

1 million emails is a lot but thats the contract on offer.


 7:45 pm on Sep 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

you might want to re read your hosts TOS, it might, might be a binding contract an where they to suffer a material loss stemming directly from a breach of their TOS,,,,

smells so good

 8:58 pm on Sep 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

FWIW, this does not make sense to me. Something is missing, and my nose is twitching.

it's not spam

One million people have opted-in to receive this mailing? Unwanted email = spam, no matter who is sending it.

a national company

In the nation of Nigeria?
Most major companies will realize the potential for trouble with a single mass mailing like this.


I'm not convinced.

About the only scenario I can envision where a mailing like this is valid would be a situation like the recent data leak of millions of veterans personal information. The VA had no choice but to send that many emails, and even at that, I seriously doubt that they were all sent on the same day.

If you insist on going forward, at least set up a couple of thousand throw-away email servers around the globe. With a single server you probably won't get more than a hundred-thousand emails out before the rest of them hit the bit bucket.


 9:04 pm on Sep 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

is everyone paranoid?

it's for a national car company, they want to email their customers.


 9:12 pm on Sep 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

If it's for a national car company with 1 million members on their site then I think they should hire a specialist company, they clearly have the cash. This is not the sort of thing one should do if one doesn't have experience and resources. A botched job/blacklisting/etc would be damaging to the company.
In any case I'd say there's pretty much no chance someone is going to post instructions on how to send 1 million emails in 1 day from your server here.


 9:38 pm on Sep 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

Cheers for your help but I was asking what problems I might have not how to do it. Have you done it before?


 10:01 pm on Sep 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

I manage a site for a customer with over 600,000 opt-ins, does that count?

Regardless of everyone's feelings on this issue, you've been tasked with a job and you're going to do it one way or the other, legit or not legit, so here are a few grains that will at least spare fellow Internet users some down time, rather than just have you plod forward and hit the send button.

Personally I'm with physics, if Ford, Chevy, or GM's webmasters are here asking about this it's truly a sad state. But you are seeing a part of the problem in the reactions you see here. It would be in your best interests to find a way to conduct this to your employer.

You are best advised not to do this "all in one shot" but in chunks, I wold say maximum of 100,000 per day. What if it gets through a portion of the 1 mil and the server croaks? How will you know where to pick up, how many of the original 1 mill are going to get 2, 3, 10 enmails, or however many times it takes you to restart the mailing and get through the list?

You must also have a VERY good sense of how much load your server can handle. Do you have a dedicated mail server or are you operating on shared bandwidth? If shared, you are going to have SERIOUS problems, I would say only attempt 10 or 20 K per day, at best.

You may be able to get all 1 mil into the queue, but even a dedicated mail server will chew on this for as much as 1 or 1 days. One of the large mailings with my client takes up to 3 hours to process, and it's not even sending to all 600 K. Yes he has a dedicated mail server.

Lastly on something of this size I would use some sort of scripting solution that tracks how many emails you ATTEMPTED to send (sent to mail program and queued,) how many actually were sent (a second script that parses out your mail logs into some intelligible format) so you know exactly where you stand if the server croaks.

If you hope to push some theoretical button and generate 1 million fresh leads, you're in for some late nights and disappointments, best of luck.


 11:37 pm on Sep 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

It seems wierd that a company that would be able to opt-in 1 million addresses, with personalized data, and would not have a service that could send out an email for them. Usually storage, sub/unsub process, and delivery come as a package deal.

I send out about half a million emails each week and we have a lot of technology and process devoted to it. I can't go into all of CAN-SPAM in a forum post but needless to say, if you are doing it wrong you can go to JAIL.

My advice is talk to a email service provider, I have a service I love, but it aint cheap. But it lets me sleep well at night knowing that I am not getting blacklisted, reported to the FTC, or annoying my ISP.


 4:30 pm on Sep 14, 2006 (gmt 0)

If Ford, Chevy, or GM's webmasters are here asking about this, it's truly a sad state.

Sad but not surprising. Look at their collective product lineup, minus the full-sized pickups and the Corvette.


 5:50 am on Sep 15, 2006 (gmt 0)

You can't send 1 million emails in one go. Hire a consultant to tell you how to do it.


 10:26 am on Sep 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

Permission based email marketing system might be a recommended route.

Global Options:
 top home search open messages active posts  

Home / Forums Index / WebmasterWorld / Webmaster General
rss feed

All trademarks and copyrights held by respective owners. Member comments are owned by the poster.
Home ¦ Free Tools ¦ Terms of Service ¦ Privacy Policy ¦ Report Problem ¦ About ¦ Library ¦ Newsletter
WebmasterWorld is a Developer Shed Community owned by Jim Boykin.
© Webmaster World 1996-2014 all rights reserved