An anonymous email address: Why do I need it and how do I create one?

Email marketing is a great marketing tool, but sadly, there are websites and platforms that misuse it, not only bothering users and contacts, but also giving email marketing a bad name.

This is the case, for instance, when certain websites or landing pages, which the user has no intention of subscribing to, ask or demand that the users open a new user or give their email address, in order to see content such as articles, E-books, search results, enlarged images, scores on questionnaires, etc.

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An example of this is, say, a website that offers a free “intelligence test”.  After you’ve spent 15 minutes filling out the questionnaire, you get a message that in order to get your results you have to enter your email address (and the results will be sent there).  If you give the website an address that’s not your real one, you won’t gain access to the link.  On the other hand, if you give the website your address you risk having your inbox flooded with spam, since this is something that repeats itself in many websites and platforms.

There are also cases in which we simply don’t want to use our email address for various reasons, such as certain matters of privacy, business matters, etc.  Thus, for example, for the purpose of QA, disposable or temporary email addresses can be wonderful.  If you work in QA, after you read this article you won’t have to bombard your colleagues’ inboxes the next time you run a test.

So, in all the instances described above, we’ll want to use a fictitious, secondary, or temporary email, and not the email we’re used to using regularly.  What solutions are available to us?

An additional email

The first solution that comes to mind is opening a secondary email, in Gmail for example, that will be used for all those cases in which an email address is required and we’re not interested in using our main address.

The disadvantages of this method are that you need to remember another user name and password, and that the address we’re using is permanent.  So, for example, if we entered this email on a website that offers a three-day trial and we want an additional trial period, we won’t be able to use the same address again on that website because it’s already “burnt” there.

A disposable email address

There are all kinds of websites that let you have an email address for one-time use for ad hoc needs and, among other reasons, so your own inbox doesn’t fill up with spam.

The mailinator website provides such a service.  The next time you need to receive mail immediately and you don’t want to give your email address, enter any address with the ending ‘mailinator’, and the email will be sent there. For instance:   Instead of the word ‘example’ you can write any combination of letters and numbers you like.

 The idea behind the website is that when mail is received at a specific address in the mailinator domain, that address is created temporarily in order to receive the email and display it.  In order to see what was sent to you, you have to enter the address you made up in the mailinator website and you’ll be immediately sent to the appropriate inbox.

The YOPmail (Your Own Protection Mail) website functions similarly.  Here, too, you don’t need a password and you can make up an email for yourself and access it through the website.  In YOPmail your email addresses are saved for eight days, and emails can’t be sent from your YOPmail address.

It appears that this is the better of the two options, so next time you’re asked for your email and you really, really don’t want to give it out, know that you have other options.

This way you’ll keep your inbox clean and receive only emails you’re really interested in getting.

You’re email marketers and you want to learn how not to be spammers? Here are 10 things you should do so your emails don’t end up in spam.

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