- Not all CSS properties are supported by all email clients, so it's important to ensure the CSS used in your eDM will be widely supported. Inline CSS is usually required.
- As all the images in your eDM will be hosted externally, look out for broken images. Always include a description for each image in ALT tags.
- Remember that your eDM will be viewed on mobile devices as well – a responsive design helps ensure your message reaches the most viewers possible.
- Make sure all your links work and connect to the right pages.
- Ensure that it's clear who the message comes from: your recipient should immediately know who sent the information and trust who it is coming from.
- Create a compelling subject line for your email, but excludes any spam triggers. This ensures your email won't get accidentally blocked by your recipient's spam trap.
- Keep background graphics to a minimum and use neutral colours. This ensures your reader's email client won't accidentally remove them.
- Offer consistent navigation throughout your eDM, so viewers know what to expect as they read your message, and will be able to quickly find links straight to specific areas of your website.
- Online and mobile readers need to skim through information quickly, so ensure all your main information is clear and accessible at the top of your message.
- Always offer an opt-out option from your mailing list. It's not just polite, but will also help reassure your customers that you have their best interests in mind.
- Always include a signature with your message, to doubly ensure your viewers know it legitimately comes from your business.
- Don't forget to test your eDM before sending it out! There's always some small detail that could be missed!
Spread your message to an old or purchased email list not only wastes your effort and time, but potentially harms your brand's good name. More than ever, businesses are finding it vital to keep their lists up to date and free from redundant addresses.
Over 77% of consumers choose email for permission-based marketing messages. It's good practice to give your recipients the choice of opting into your mailing list. By asking for their permission first, you'll ensure your list only contains recipients who want to receive your content.
This in turn helps improve your sender's, and your brand's reputation with ISPs, preventing your emails from inadvertent bans, thus allowing you to raise positive engagement with your customers.
Your message has gotten into your customer's Inbox. Congratulations! You've tackled one of the great difficulties of electronic marketing. There's just one hurdle. How do you stay in that Inbox, and increase your chances of getting read?
The first step is technical, removing invalid subscribers with overly full Inboxes for extended periods of time. UFOSend handles this part of the process for you, keeping your mailing list clean. Since many email providers score your company based on user engagement, removing invalid users can help raise your score and improve your messages' chances of reaching an Inbox.
Basic tricks you can use to help retain your message with your potential viewer include reducing the number of images in your message, and replacing them with easily-readable text. Tweak wording and subject lines to create compelling copy, better ensuring they get read.
When a user marks your email as spam in their Inbox, their email service provider will include your email address on their unsend list, blocking any of your future emails to that user. Email service providers also measure the amount of spam complaints your email addresses receive over time. Every time a user marks your email as spam, it counts towards their email service provider's decision whether to mark all emails from your domain as spam or send them through to inboxes.
Improving your spam complaint rating: You can help improve your emails' chances of not being reported as spam. First, make sure the unsubscribe link and information in your emails are easy-to-find and follow. This may seem counterintuitive in an eDM, but its better in the long run that a recipient who doesn't want your email to unsubscribe rather than mark you as spam.
Secondly, keep your eDM deliveries to a set schedule that is known to subscribers, or ensure that you're not sending out eDMs too often. Flooding your subscribers with emails will only result in frustrated spam complaints. This keeps the information in your emails valuable and relevant to your readers.
A growing number of tech-savvy users access their emails from mobile devices, be it smart phones or tablets. If your eDM isn't ready for their devices, you stand a good chance of losing your subscribers.
Improving Engagement with Mobile Users: First, see what your email template looks like on the small screen. This should give you a great start on places that may need improvement. Consider reducing the number of images you use, and removing any Flash components in your eDM. Finally, ensure that your email message is also available as a multi-part text-only version for text-only mobile devices.
The first thing to do is to set up a sender's email address which will also be able to receive emails. Verify that this email works by sending a test email to yourself. Fill in your most up-to-date company information, including all contact details. Finally, create your send list for your first eDM campaign.
Your email's "From" field should accurately identify your organisation as the source (the originating domain) of that email. This is for both your subscribers' and their ISP's instant identification. If anything in your header appears misleading or false, your address could be banned by your subscriber's ISP. Subscribers could also mistake your email for spam.
In Hong Kong, OFCA regulations specify that commercial electronic messages (including emails, short messages, faxes and pre-recorded telephone messages) must provide clear and accurate sender information within the message. This includes the contact name, telephone number and address of the sender. If the message is an email, it should also include the sender's contact email address. Every message must provide opt-out instructions, and the sender must honour any opt-out requests within 10 days of receipt. This is why it is good practice to include all the necessary contact information, plus a postal address, and opt-out instructions, with all eDMs.
Different countries may also impose different requirements for electronic messages. For example, in the US and EU, a physical postal address should be visible in the message's footer.
Creating your new campaign is easy. Just follow these instructions from within your user account:
- Choose "Create campaign" under the Campaign section. Enter your basic campaign information (campaign name, email subject and sender).
- Choose a way to design your newsletter. This can be done in 3 ways:
- Use our pre-designed templates. These are pre-tested, responsive designs for both desktop and mobile screens.
- Use the built-in graphical editor to code your own templates.
- If you already have your own templates prepared, simply import your templates into our system as a .zip/.rar file.
- Choose whom to send your campaign to. You can either choose a predefined send list, input email address(es) manually or upload an Excel sheet listing all the recipients.
- Choose a delivery time. You can either send out your eDM immediately or schedule a time to send them later.
During campaign creation, choose any pre-designed template. Click on the framed blocks to edit your text and add images.
There are a few precautions you can take to make your message's subject and content less likely to be blocked by your subscriber's email service provider.
- Avoid using deceptive or misleading subject lines.
- Avoid using keywords in both your subject and content that may be mistaken for spam triggers.
- Check every link in your message to ensure they lead to the correct, functioning page.
- Use inline styles.
- Provide an ALT title for every image.
- Send out your email with a corresponding plain text version. This will make it easier for viewers to read it on text-only mobile devices or email clients.
Find additional references in our Resources section, with detailed instructions on crafting a good eDM message.
All merges use then $tag$ format, under which the system substitutes this parameter with the desired value. Mail merge functions apply to both the subject line and body of an email. For example, if your subscriber's name is entered into a field, let's call this 'firstname', and your subscriber's first name is 'John':
Dear $firstname$, will output as Dear John
UFOSend also automatically detects the language you're using and displays the name in the appropriate sequence.
Example for your reference :
Every campaign has three statuses. When a campaign is under construction, its status is 'Draft'. You can continue editing it as long as it is not officially sent out. Once your campaign is confirmed and sent to your target recipients, its status changes to 'Released'. For the sake of system integrity and reporting purposes, the system does not allow editing this sent campaign again. If you have scheduled a campaign for future delivery, the campaign's status will be shown as 'Scehduled'.
From time to time, you may want to edit released campaigns and prepare them for a second delivery. To do this, click the Duplicate button and the system will automatically create a new campaign that is identical to the original. This new campaign's status is automatically set to 'Draft', allowing you to edit it as needed.
Mock-ups are important examples of how your eDM will look in most popular email clients. Unlike the preview function, a mock-up allows you to directly test if every mail merge field and link is working properly. We strongly recommend reviewing every campaign as a mock-up before release. Mock-up emails are not deducted from your email quota, and will not change your campaign's status from 'Draft' to 'Released'.
UFOSend offers 3 methods to retrieve your subscribers for delivery:
- Type in your recipient's email address manually.
- Import your mailing list as an .xls file. Just drag the file to import and send.
- The most convenient method is to store all your recipients in a database. That way, you can select a previously defined send list to mail targeted groups.
A send list is a basic list of stored subscribers. You can group similar users into one send list according to criteria you've defined, like shopping preference or gender. The same user can belong to multiple send lists. Any uncategorised users are automatically placed by the system under 'Unassigned Users'.
Choose a send list to import. To do this, compile your contacts into an Excel sheet (a sample file is available in our send list section). List one contact per row. Drag your file into your screen to import it. Our system automatically validates your file for incorrect formatting, and warns you if it contains duplicate emails.
Go into the send list you'd like to create a signup form for, and click 'Create my signup form'. This will show a few line of code that you can paste into your preferred page's HTML code. A signup form will then be displayed on this page in an iframe.
An unsend list holds the addresses of all unsubscribed and bounced emails, as well as emails that were reported by their recipients as spam. These are a few ways an address may be placed in the unsend list:
- Unsubscribe: When users click to and confirm that they wish to unsubscribe from your list, their address will be added to the unsend list.
- Bounce: If an email is sent out and the mail log reports back that the user is unknown or their address is terminated, this address will be put in the unsend list.
- Routine scans: Our system intelligently tracks the number of soft bounces an email receives to determine if the address it's been sent to is still valid. If it is not, the address is placed on the unsend list.
- Spam reports: UFOSend works with ISPs' feedback loop programs. If any of their users report an email address for spam, we then record it on the unsend list as well.
Please note that in all circumstances, the system will not send eDMs to addresses listed on the unsend list.
Our system generates numerous useful reports you may find handy to track your users based on:
- Daily & hourly open rates, clickthroughs, unsubscribes and reported spam
- Individual reports for each on-going campaign
- Consolidated monthly statistics
'Successful' deliveries mean the recipient's mail server has accepted your message. This shows the number of emails that have successfully been delivered to their recipients.
'Bounce' refers to the number of emails that could not reach their recipients. Each bounce shows the individual reason why. For example, whether this is due to an unknown user or host (hard bounce) or full mailbox(soft bounce).
'Awaiting Feedback' counts how many emails have not received any response from the recipient's mail server. This happens when emails have not been processed and stay in the queue, or under retries. It may take a while to receive a response after an email is sent. Depending on the response, this could count towards a 'Successful' or 'Failed' delivery. There's also the small chance that the remote server will not respond at all, for example, if the remote domain cannot be reached.
Authentication is used by large ISPs and corporate mail servers (receivers) to control the spam they receive. This means that legitimate email marketers must ensure their email campaigns have been authenticated, in order to prevent deliverability issues with these receivers.
UFOSend assists users in leveraging SPF-authorised and DKIM-signed messages to achieve domain-level authentication for all outbound emails sent from its platform.